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Eco-Rapid Lite Rail Board Votes for Artesia to Paramount Line

 

BY BRIAN HEWS

(September 23. 2021) ~The Eco-Rapid Transit Board of Directors completed its review of the Metro Draft West Santa Ana Branch Environmental Impact Statement and unanimously voted to support “Alternative 1,” the one-seat ride to Union Station.

The Board of Directors also recommended the inclusion of a station in Little Tokyo as this station provides access to Downtown destinations, the Metro Regional Connector and offers the ability to transfer to destinations in East Los Angeles and eventually Whittier.

Board Chair and Artesia City Councilmember Ali Sajjad Taj stated, “This is an important step in the process of bringing this important rail line to our communities.”

For 20 years, the Eco-Rapid Transit Joint Powers Authority have been working together to bring rail transit to Southeast Los Angeles. This $9.8 billion 19.4 mile light rail line would connect communities from Artesia to Downtown Los Angeles.

Now it is becoming closer to reality with the Metro Board of Directors scheduled to select a locally preferred alternative in December or January.

Eco-Rapid Transit consists of 12 members including Artesia, Bell, Bell Gardens, Cerritos, Cudahy, Downey, Glendale, Huntington Park, Maywood, Paramount, South Gate and the Burbank Glendale Pasadena Airport Authority.

This line will serve a population of 1.4 million people through some of the densest parts of Los Angeles County.

Communities such as Maywood, Cudahy, and Huntington Park have densities that rival Manhattan. Much of the area consists of minority, low-income populations.

83.1% of the population are minorities, including over 90% being Hispanic, with about 76% of the residents speaking Spanish. Over 40 languages are spoken in the corridor.

The board members are local elected officials who care about their communities and recognize the importance of bringing this important rail transit line that can provide 100 years of service.

Board Director and South Gate Councilmember Maria Davila said, “We have been working on this for a long time. We are stronger all working together in support of this project. We recognized the challenges of obtaining funding to build this project. For our communities, this is also a question of fairness and equity.”

You can still provide your own comments. Metro is accepting comments on the Draft West Santa Ana Branch light rail project Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement until September 28th.

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