Los Angeles residents voted Nov. 8 to approve Measure M, a sales tax measure proposed by the Los Angeles County Metro Board of Directors to provide funding for transportation improvements in the region.
Measure M, which will levy a half-cent sales tax increase, will allocate $860 million annually for transportation improvements over the next 40 years. Included in the plans are a tunnel connecting the San Fernando Valley and the LA’s Westside, further extension of the Purple Line, and a rail line to Los Angeles International Airport.
Additionally, Measure M will pay for much-needed sidewalk improvements, pothole repairs, cycling infrastructure, bike share expansion, and a network of greenways. The measure won with approximately two-thirds of the vote.
Los Angeles is in the midst of a large building program that includes three major projects that extending transit service in the area that came on the heels of passage of Measure R, a similar funding bill that passed in 2008. Projects underway include:
Crenshaw/LAX – The $2 billion Crenshaw/LAX project consists of approximately 8.5 miles of new light rail infrastructure including bored tunnel, cut-and-cover tunnel, at-grade and elevated line along with eight new stations. The Crenshaw Line will extend from a terminus on Aviation Boulevard near LAX Airport to a new underground station near the Expo Line in downtown Los Angeles. Walsh/Shea Corridor Constructors was selected as the design-build contractor and was given NTP in September 2013. The line is expected to open for revenue service in 2019.
Regional Connector – The Regional Connector project is a $1.42 billion, 1.9-mile underground line, mainly constructed by EPB TBM. This project connects the Metro Gold Line in the north and east to the Metro Blue Line in the south and the recently opened Expo Line in the south and west. The project includes the construction of three underground stations through the center of the city. In 2014, Metro approved a $927.2 million design-build contract with Regional Connector Constructors (RCC), led by Skanska USA Civil West California District Inc. in partnership with Traylor Brothers Inc. Mott MacDonald is the lead designer for RCC.
Metro Purple Line Extension – The Purple Line Extension (formerly known as the Westside Subway Extension) is a $6.3 billion, 9-mile extension of the Metro Purple Line that is planned to connect from the existing station at Wilshire/Western westward through the Wilshire Boulevard Miracle Mile District, Beverly Hills, Century City and into Westwood, near the I-405 Freeway. The extension includes seven stations that will be built along the alignment. The tunnel will be about 22 ft outside diameter constructed by EPB TBM. The 9-mile project is broken into three sections. The first section, comprising 3.9 miles and three underground stations, was awarded to a joint venture of Skanska, Traylor Bros. and J.F. Shea for $1.6 billion.