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A light rail project that would take passengers from East Los Angeles to South El Monte or Whittier is moving forward, although it may take two decades to complete.
Last week, Metro released the draft environmental study for an extension plan with two light rail options, both beginning at the Metro Gold Line Eastside Extension’s Station at Atlantic and Pomona boulevards.
According to The Source, Metro’s news blog, the extension project could help ease traffic and provide an alternative to driving on the 60 freeway or along Washington
Although this phase of Metro’s Gold Line Eastside Extension is not on the timeline for operation until 2035, Metro is moving forward in case funds become available for earlier constructions.
From The Source: Potential light rail alternatives
”¢The “SR 60”³ Alternative would extend the Gold Line for 6.9 miles to South El Monte with four proposed new stations. The train would run adjacent to the 60 freeway, mostly on aerial structures, and include four new stations serving Monterey Park, Montebello and South El Monte.
”¢The “Washington Boulevard” Alternative would extend the Gold Line for 9.5 miles to Whittier with six proposed new stations. The train would follow the 60 freeway and then turn south, running on an aerial structure above Garfield Avenue until turning east on Washington Boulevard and ending near the intersection of Washington and Lambert Road. This alternative would serve Monterey Park, Montebello, Pico Rivera and Whittier.
The study estimated ridership for the SR 60 alternative to be 16,700 boardings each weekday. It would take riders 13 minutes to travel by light rail from the Atlantic Station in East L.A. to the Peck Road Station in El Monte.
The Washington Boulevard alternative would have an estimated 19,900 daily boardings per weekday. It would take riders 17.5 minutes from East L.A. to the Lambert Station in Whittier.
The estimated costs for the rail options range from $1.271 billion to $1.661 billion in 2010 dollars.
Metro will conduct four public hearings during the 60-day formal comment period in Montebello, Pico Rivera, South El Monte and Whittier. Visit Metro.net for dates and locations. You can also email in your comment to [email protected]