Both the Los Angeles City Council and the Community Redevelopment Agency moved the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) forward and it is now en route to Metro for final approval. “Alternative 7″ was selected as the LPA after considerable review and input at numerous community meetings. The full set of alignment alternatives and environmental documents can be found on Metro’s website, located here. The project’s next step is securing CEQA and NEPA environmetnal clearances.
Attached below is the full press release from the Office of Councilmember JoséHuizar:
LOS ANGELES (March 12, 2012) – The Downtown Los Angeles Streetcar project is taking another significant step forward by concluding its Federal Transit
Authority (FTA)-required Alternatives Analysis (AA) process. The formal report on the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) is set to be received by Metro’s Planning & Programming Committee and Construction Committee Wednesday and Thursday of this week.
The LPA selected – referred to as Alternative 7 in the AA process – was the highest scoring of all routes considered. The selected route proceeds south on Broadway from 1st Street to 11th Street, west to Figueroa Street, north to 7th Street, east to Hill Street, and north, terminating at 1st Street. The route would also include the ability to travel up 1st Street and into Bunker Hill on Grand Avenue as funding becomes available.
A variation on this route, which travels east on 9th instead of 7th, is also being considered as part of the environmental review. With the completion of the AA and the identification of a streetcar route, the next step is the comprehensive environmental review process, which is expected to last nine to 12 months.
“This is another important milestone for the Downtown L.A. Streetcar,” said Councilmember José Huizar whose Bringing Back Broadway initiative includes returning streetcar service Downtown. “Now that we have a route, our formal environmental review and critically important funding plans can now move forward. This route will connect Downtown transit, neighborhoods and destinations while boosting the local economy throughout Downtown. Thousands of people a day will be delivered right to the businesses, offices and cultural destinations they want to reach.”
The AA process began by analyzing 65 potential alternatives including routes derived from previous streetcar studies carried out since 1995. The Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) was determined after substantial public input at numerous workshops, scoping meetings and other public events. Several hundred people provided comments on and expressed support of their route and system preferences. Metro is conducting the study on behalf of CRA/LA and the City of Los Angeles. The Downtown L.A. Streetcar project is included in Metro’s Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) as one of the plans strategic initiatives.
CRA/LA funded the environmental efforts and the related consultant work performed by HDR. The Downtown L.A. Streetcar project is approved by the FTA to advance immediately into its formal environmental review and preliminary engineering.
In a study conducted last fall as part of the AA process, Fehr & Peers estimated the streetcar will generate 8,390 daily boardings. This analysis means the LA Streetcar is projected to have one of the highest opening ridership numbers in the country.
Streetcars have been an economic and job engine in Portland, Seattle and Tacoma, and are expected to do the same in Charlotte, Salt Lake City, Tucson and Atlanta, where new streetcar lines are planned.
In a study by AECOM, returning the Streetcar to Downtown would generate 9,300 new jobs, $1.1 billion in new development, $24.5 million in new annual tourism and consumer spending, and $47 million in new city revenue – all above projections for Downtown’s future without a streetcar.
Projected costs for the streetcar are estimated roughly between $107 million and $125 million.
The proposed Downtown L.A. Streetcar will be an approximately four-mile modern streetcar system, which would run seven days a week, 18 hours a day. Its projected opening ridership exceeds all other similar existing or planned streetcar projects in the nation. It would serve areas including Bunker Hill, Grand Avenue and the Music Center, Historic Broadway and the Historic Core, South Park, L.A. LIVE and the Los Angeles Convention Center.
More than 500,000 people converge on Downtown for work everyday, and recent census reports indicate more than 50,000 residents now call Downtown home, a figure dramatically higher than the 10,000 residents living in Downtown a decade ago.
For more information and agendas for this week’s Metro Committee meetings, visit metro.net/about/board/agenda/.
For more information about Bringing Back Broadway, visit BringingBackBroadway.com.
For more information about the Downtown L.A. Streetcar, including a link to a video about the project, visit lastreetcar.org/resources.
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