Los Angeles County Mayor Michael D. Antonovich criticized plans to extend the subway to the ocean, suggesting that the huge cost will add to Los Angeles County ’s regional transit crisis.
“Plagued with cost over-runs, sinkholes and economic damage, the current $5 billion, 17-mile Red Line helped to create the regional gridlock we now face by draining scarce transportation funds away from vital projects for the County’s other 87 cities and 134 unincorporated communities. Despite the public voting against future subway funding in 1998, the proposed extension will spend another $7-10 billion for 13 miles — further threatening vital, cost-effective projects that will benefit the entire region.
For one mile of subway, Los Angeles County could build about 7 miles of light rail technology like the Green, Gold, Blue and Expo Lines or 15 miles of bus rapid technology like the Orange Line. Cost-effective projects to increase transit ridership, relieve congestion and improve air quality for our entire County include the Gold Line Foothill Extension to Ontario Airport, the Green Line Extension to LAX, the Expo Line to Santa Monica, the Orange Line Extension, the Downtown Regional Connector, the Gold Line Eastside Extension to Whittier, and Metrolink track improvements from Palmdale, Santa Clarita and Chatsworth to Union Station.
If the cities of Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica and West Hollywood desire a subway, they should use their own communities’ resources and creative financing options including redevelopment strategies and benefit assessment districts — rather than draining vital transit dollars away from regional transportation projects which are required to alleviate regional traffic congestion.”