The following excerpt appeared in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and LA Daily News on March 21, 2023. To read the full article (may require subscription), click here.
Why 2 major LA Metro rail projects were denied funding by California transit agency – San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and LA Daily News
By Steve Scauzillo
March 21, 2023
A major funding factor was whether a project needed state funds to ensure promised federal funding, sometimes called matching funds. This was true for both the [East San Fernando Valley] line and the Inglewood project. The state document said there was an urgency to rush state dollars to these two in order to keep the projects from losing Federal Transit Administration dollars.
With the Gold Line [to Montclair], the internal document placed less value on the $1.23 billion raised from local tax sources. “The proportion of [Transit and Intercity Rail Capital Program] dollars being used to leverage other funding is not as competitive,” read the document.
“It is wrong to punish a local population for spending a billion dollars of local funds to accelerate the beginning of a project and then say there are not enough local funds to justify the TIRCP investments to complete the project,” wrote Habib Balian, CEO of the Metro Foothill Gold Line Construction Authority, in response to the document.
Montclair Mayor John Dutrey said the city adjusted its general plan to accommodate high-density housing near the Montclair TransCenter, where the L Line Station would be built. The Claremont and Montclair stations would add 8,000 daily boardings or about half of the line’s total ridership, the Authority reported.
Completion of the line to Montclair would take about 15,000 car trips off the roads each day and reduce 26.7 million vehicle miles travelled annually, studies show. Transportation planners, as well as San Gabriel Valley cities had hoped the project would be funded, so use of the light-rail train would lessen the traffic on the 210, 10 and 60 Freeways in Los Angeles County.
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