Blog

Forward Motion, November 2014

Mobility 21 Summit to Return to Disneyland Hotel
Friday, Aug. 28, 2015

Save the date for Mobility 21’s 14th Annual Southern California Transportation Summit. More than 1,000 transportation leaders and elected officials are expected to attend California’s largest one-day transportation event on Friday, Aug. 28, 2015 at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim. Stay tuned for more information.


Mobility 21 to Co-host Holiday Reception Honoring
California Transportation Commission (CTC)
With Special Guest Andre Boutros,
Retiring CTC Executive Director

Wednesday, Dec. 10, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
The Atrium at the Riverside County Administrative Center

Registration
$25 Private Sector
$10 Public Sector, Nonprofits, Students, Elected Officials


L.A. Metro Breaks Ground on Purple Line Extension Project in Los Angeles

Earlier this month, leaders of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) joined federal, state and local elected officials in the Mid-Wilshire District of Los Angeles to break ground on the long awaited Metro Purple Line Extension Project, the largest, most ambitious public works project in the Western United States.

In July, Metro’s Board of Directors approved a contract with Skanska, Traylor and Shea (STS), a Joint Venture, to construct the Purple Line Extension Project. Construction of the subway extension will connect West Los Angeles to the region’s growing rail network, making it possible to travel between Downtown Los Angeles and Westwood in 25 minutes. The first subway segment will extend the Purple Line 3.9 miles from the existing Wilshile/Western Purple Line terminus near Koreatown into Beverly Hills. Three new underground stations are planned at Wilshire/La Brea, Wilshire/Fairfax and Wilshire/La Cienega, providing fast, frequent, high-capacity transit service farther west along busy Wilshire Boulevard.

“The Purple Line will ease traffic along the congested Wilshire corridor and will make traveling from the westside to downtown faster and greener.” said Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles and Metro Board Chair. “When it comes to infrastructure, L.A. is on the move. We are right now investing 36 billion dollars in our transportation infrastructure to ease congestion and create thousands of jobs. All together, this is the largest public works project in the nation. In the car capital of the world, we are looking to reduce traffic and cut air pollution by giving people car-free options to get to work and play.”

The Purple Line Extension is a critically important rail project that is partially funded by the 2008 Measure R sales tax that was overwhelmingly approved by two-thirds of L.A. County voters. The first segment of the subway is expected to be completed in 2023 with a project budget of $2.821 billion. In addition to this local funding, Metro received a $1.25 billion Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA) from the Federal Transit Administration to help pay for the first segment. The U.S. Department of Transportation also granted Metro a low-interest loan of $856 million from a Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) to complete the funding package for the project’s first phase. Combined, these nearly $2 billion in project commitments represent the biggest federal transportation investment for a single construction segment in the history of Los Angeles County.

The remaining $821 million in project funding for the first segment includes Measure R, City of Los Angeles local funding, and other existing local and federal funds.

The project is planned to be built in three sections. Section 2, which will include Wilshire/Rodeo and Century City stations, is scheduled for completion in 2026. Section 3, which will include Westwood/UCLA and Westwood/VA Hospital stations, is planned to open in 2035. When all three project sections are complete, the Purple Line will extend westward from Wilshire/Western for nearly nine miles with a total of seven new stations.

Metro is currently seeking additional federal funding that could accelerate subway construction for Section 2 in the form of a $1.1 billion grant from the federal New Starts program, and a $307 million low-interest loan from the federal TIFIA program.

The full 9-mile project is projected to generate about 62,000 daily weekday boardings at the seven new stations. Today, there are 39,000 daily boardings on the Purple Line between Union Station and Wilshire/Western. By 2040, 150,000 daily boardings are expected on the Purple Line between Union Station and Westwood/VA Hospital.

During peak periods, trains are expected to run every four minutes. During off-peak periods, they are expected to run every 10 minutes. It will also create tens of thousands of jobs and generate increased economic activity for the region.

Over 300,000 people travel into the Westside every day for work from throughout the region. More than 100,000 people leave the area for outside destinations. These numbers will increase over time. The Purple Line is expected to provide a much needed transit alternative for traveling to and from West Los Angeles, one of the county’s most densely populated, job-rich areas. The area is also home to major world-class destinations.

The subway extension is expected to reduce reliance on automobiles, help reduce roadway congestion, reduce travel times and reduce greenhouse gases.

The Purple Line extension also will offer improved connectivity to the entire Metro Bus and Rail network, as well as municipal bus lines and other regional transportation services. It is just one of several projects designed to improve transit options and mobility in the area. Other planned improvements include the Wilshire Bus Rapid Transit Project and Expo Phase II line to Santa Monica.


Mobility 21 Advisory Board Member Spotlight:
Dina Rochford
Principal, Leighton

Dina Rochford serves a Principal for Leighton and has been with the firm since 1996, maintaining and developing business through tracking regional transportation, public works, commercial and industrial projects. In addition to her role at Leighton, she is very active in her professional community. She currently serves as the Chair of the Board of Governors for the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC)-California; is a board member for the Orange County Chapter of ACEC; is an Advisory Board Member of Mobility 21; and is an active member in all Southern California chapters of WTS. Ms. Rochford is often asked to speak as an expert in her field and participates in mentoring programs to help upcoming professionals in the industry. She has been with Leighton Group, Inc. since 1996, maintaining and developing business for the firm through tracking regional transportation, public works, commercial and industrial projects.

She previsously served as:

  • Chair of the City of Huntington Beach Public Works Commission from 1997-2004;
  • Aide to Irvine’s Mayor Christina Shea from 1994-2000; and
  • Senior Staff Assistant to Congressman Chris Cox of Newport Beach from 1988-1996.

 


Officials cut the ribbon at a dedication ceremony celebrating the opening of the Hunts Lane Grade Separation Project in San Bernardino County.

Hunts Lane Grade Separation Project Opens to Public

The San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG), Union Pacific Railroad, and the cities of Colton and San Bernardino celebrated the opening of the Hunts Lane Grade Separation Project on Nov. 6 in front of a crowd of residents, business owners, project personnel and elected officials.

The dedication ceremony, held at the foot of the new overpass, celebrates the completion of the approximately $30 million dollar transportation improvement designed to reduce congestion, enhance safety, decrease emergency response time, improve air quality, and reduce noise in the neighboring communities.

Progress started on this complex project eliminating the at-grade crossing of vehicle traffic with rail traffic nearly two years ago. Motorists were allowed to use the new bridge for the first time on Oct. 30. Minor work will continue through the end of the year.

“Improvements like the Hunts Lane Grade Separation Project represent yet another way that SANBAG is trying to enhance the quality of life for the residents of San Bernardino County,” SANBAG President, L. Dennis Michael said. “Without funding efforts like Measure I, projects like this just wouldn’t be possible.”

The Hunts Lane Grade Separation Project is just one of a series of grade separation efforts throughout the county that are designed to keep local traffic moving in areas where heavy rail corridors exist. Currently, SANBAG and Measure I are participating in six other active grade separation projects totaling more than $250 million in project value. Those projects are:

  • Laurel Street Grade Separation – Colton
  • Palm Avenue Grade Separation – San Bernardino
  • Glen Helen Parkway Grade Separation – San Bernardino County
  • South Milliken Grade Separation – Ontario
  • North Vineyard Grade Separation – Ontario
  • Lenwood Road Grade Separation – Barstow

For more information about the grade separation program and all the other projects at SANBAG, visit the website at www.sanbag.ca.gov, or follow on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/sanbagnews.


Kraman Named CEO of
Transportation Corridor Agencies

Last month Michael A. Kraman was selected CEO of the Transportation Corridor Agencies (TCA) – the government agency responsible for the largest network of toll roads in California.

Kraman joined TCA in May 2012 as chief engineer overseeing environmental planning, engineering design, construction and contracting activities for State Routes 73, 133, 241 and 261. He was made acting CEO in March 2014 and has spearheaded the agencies’ strategic outlook as well as its daily operations.

He recently led the agency through the successful refinancing of $1.4 billion of its $2.2 billion in outstanding debt issued to fund construction of the 73 Toll Road. The refinance not only improves the toll road’s long-term financial health by lowering the annual debt service payments, but also steers Orange County’s toll roads in a direction that will benefit customers and provide long term stability for the region’s transportation network.

Prior to joining TCA, Kraman served as the Southern California District Leader for HNTB – a national infrastructure solutions firm serving public and private owners and construction contractors – where he was responsible for operations in Orange County, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino and San Diego. He served as the design manager for the $1 billion 405 Sepulveda Pass Widening design-build project in West Los Angeles which included its 56-hour weekend full freeway closure event coined “Carmaggedon” that took place in July 2011.

“I’m honored by TCA’s Boards of Directors’ decision and intend to operate the toll road network in a fiscally conservative manner and provide value to our customers. We are strong stewards of the environment and will continue to maintain our 2,000 plus acres of open space and restored habitat and future capital projects will be delivered in an environmentally responsible manner,” said Kraman. “It has been a privilege to serve as the acting CEO and I plan to ensure that TCA continues to improve mobility in Southern California without the use of taxpayer dollars.”

Kraman earned a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the United States Coast Guard Academy and a master of science in civil engineering degree from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. He is a registered professional engineer in California and numerous other states.


Transportation Events in the Community

Thursday, Dec. 4
WTS-OC: 26th Annual Scholarship & Awards Dinner
More info | Register

Thursday, Dec. 4
SMPS/LA: Holiday Party
More info | Register

Monday, Dec. 8
San Diego Transportation Associations Holiday Luncheon
More info | Register

Wednesday, Dec. 10
Holiday Reception Honoring the CTC
More info | Register

Wednesday, Dec. 10
ACEC Riverside-San Bernardino Chapter: Holiday Party
More info | Register

Tuesday, Jan. 13
SMPS-OC: A/E/C Update: Tustin, Irvine, Anaheim
More info

Wednesday, Jan. 21
ACEC-LA: County of Los Angeles Department of Public Works – Monthly Luncheon
More info | Register

Thursday, Jan. 22
WTS-IE: 10th Annual Scholarship & Awards Dinner

Thursday, Jan. 29
CMAA: Owner’s Night
More info | Register

Jan. 29-31
New Partners for Smart Growth Conference
Baltimore, Maryland
More info | Register

May 4-7
ACT Expo 2015
More info | Register

Friday, Aug. 28
Mobility 21: 2015 Summit at Disneyland Hotel

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