Senator Mendoza Issued the Following Statement Regarding Funding for Eco-Rapid Light-Rail Project

Environmental Impact Report Approved by LA Metro Board

September 22, 2016

Sacramento - Senator Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia) issued the following statement congratulating Eco Rapid for continuing to advocate for fully funding the Eco-Rapid Light-Rail Project:

“I congratulate Eco-Rapid's Board and staff and the Gateway Cities Council of Governments for their hard work and commitment in spite of delays in seeking to fully fund the Eco-Rapid Light-Rail Project.

“Their advocacy has recently resulted in the unanimous approval of funding for the Eco-Rapid Light Rail Project’s environmental impact study from Los Angeles’s Union Station to Artesia.

“The Eco-Rapid line is projected to carry over 80,000 riders daily, matching or exceeding the ridership of any proposed light-rail project nationally.

“While my constituents are disappointed that the project was "redlined" for any funds for the next 15 years from Metro’s Measure M which will be on the November ballot, they will be pleased that non-Measure M funds will be used to keep the line's planning process moving forward.

“I look forward to working closely with our southeast cities to ensure the study is completed as soon as possible.”

Background

In August, Metro voted to place Measure M on the November ballot, which if approved, will increase Los Angeles County’s sales tax by a half-cent to fund indefinitely major expansions of Southern California’s transit network.

The foundation for the Long-Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) is an Expenditure Plan which includes nine categories of funding for a variety of transit-related infrastructure projects and programs to build and operate a multi-modal transportation system. More information on the Metro plan may be found at http://theplan.metro.net/

The Eco-Rapid Light Rail Project which is a part of the LRTP will:

  • Use the abandoned West Santa Ana Branch right-of-way to extend a light-rail line from Artesia to Downtown Los Angeles by 2027 with subsequent links to Santa Clarita, integrating with the existing Antelope Valley & Anaheim/Santa Ana Line, and possibly the High Speed Rail lines at Norwalk.
  • Serve an area of south and southwestern Los Angeles County that is designated in the top 10% priority of Environmental Justice tracts in need of cleaner air solutions, according to Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) of California: http://oehha.ca.gov/ej/ces2.html
  • Have an estimated daily ridership of 70,000 to 80,000 people – more than any current or proposed light-rail transit line in the Los Angeles area, due to the high population density of the corridor cities including Artesia, Bell, Bell Gardens, Bellflower, Cudahy, Downey, Gardena, Huntington Park, Maywood, Paramount, South Gate, and Vernon.

A map of the proposed project may be found at the Eco-Rapid Transit website: http://eco-rapid.org/Project/maps.shtml

Los Angeles (LA) County is expected to grow by 2.4 million people by 2057. Metro recently updated its Long Range Transportation Plan to enhance mobility, fairness in representation and quality of life for LA County, to meet its transportation needs, and position the region for future growth.

Senator Tony Mendoza, a Los Angeles native and former elementary school teacher in East Los Angeles, represents the 32nd Senate District encompassing portions of Los Angeles and Orange Counties. For more information about Senator Mendoza visit his website or follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

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