Bohnett Foundation Donates $50,000 to Streetcar Project

March 2nd, 2011 by Eric Metz

PDF of press release available here.

LOS ANGELES (March 2, 2011) — An award of $50,000 to Los Angeles Streetcar, Inc., from the David Bohnett Foundation could help spur over a billion dollars in local economic development and create 9,300 new jobs.

The funds awarded will help with the nascent non-profit’s operational costs, as well as the promotional efforts of its Downtown L.A. Streetcar Project, an initiative to help the city revitalize its metropolitan core and transition to more sustainable transportation.

“These funds are vital to the early stages of an organization like Los Angeles Streetcar, Inc.,” said Michael Fleming, Executive Director of the David Bohnett Foundation. “We’re proud of this award and the economic impact it could have on the city — new economic development, job creation and tax revenue. It could be one of city’s most important infrastructure projects of the decade.”

The Downtown Streetcar Project seeks to provide an exciting and attractive transit experience, linking many of downtown’s main attractions and activity centers with other transit modes to enhance the region’s overall transportation network. It could also help boost the city’s fallen green ranking. By partnering together on the project, Los Angeles Streetcar, Inc., and the David Bohnett Foundation are committed to the sustainability of the city’s infrastructure and aesthetic appeal of the downtown area.

“We are thrilled and extremely grateful to have the ongoing support of the Bohnett Foundation,” said Dennis Allen, Executive Director of Los Angeles Streetcar, Inc. (LASI) “They were one of the first foundations to recognize the impact that a streetcar system will have on our community at-large and the many economic returns it can produce. We look forward to our continued partnership with them.”

On February 8, 2011, LASI released the findings of a study by AECOM that reveals some of the benefits of the proposed $125 million streetcar system. It concluded that a modern streetcar network could generate $1.1 billion in new development, 2,600 new housing units, 5,800 new hotel room bookings per year, 675,000 square feet of new office space, 9,300 new jobs, $24.5 million in new annual consumer spending, and $47 million in new city revenue.

Los Angeles Streetcar, Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization (www.golastreetcar.org), is led by a diverse Board of Directors that represents downtown’s numerous community, civic and business groups. Through a public/private partnership with the City of Los Angeles, LASI is leading the efforts to fund, design and build a modern streetcar project in downtown L.A.

Since 1999, the David Bohnett Foundation (www.bohnettfoundation.org) has been committed to improving society through social activism, and has provided funding, state-of-the-art technology and technical support to innovative organizations and institutions. Grants totaling over $40 million to date have been given in several primary funding areas: The Fund for Los Angeles, supporting a broad spectrum of arts, educational and civic programs; LGBT-related causes; voting rights and registration initiatives; supporting research and public policies to reduce the toll of firearm violence; and animal research and rights.

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