Foothill Gold Line E-News
Foothill Gold Line Board Welcomes New Leadership
Newly-appointed board members, from Pomona and La Verne, are named chair and vice chair
At their January meeting, the Foothill Gold Line Construction Authority (Construction Authority) board of directors welcomed two new members: Pomona Mayor Tim Sandoval (pictured above, fourth from left) and La Verne Council Member Robin Carder (pictured above, fourth from right). These new appointments come following last month’s retirements of longtime board members Doug Tessitor and Sam Pedroza, after having served on the board for nearly a decade. Following the swearing in of the two new members, the board voted unanimously to have them lead the nine-member board: Mayor Sandoval as Chair and Council Member Carder as Vice Chair.
The following are comments from the new leadership:
Newly-elected Chairman Tim Sandoval:
“It is an honor to have been chosen by my colleagues to lead the board as we work to make the Foothill Gold Line dream come true for the tens of thousands of future riders that live and work in the eastern San Gabriel Valley and western Inland Empire. Hundreds of thousands of people travel through this corridor every day, and they are eager to have the reliable, sustainable transportation option provided by the Gold Line.”
Newly-elected Vice Chairwoman Robin Carder:
“We are going through an exciting but challenging period for the project, and I look forward to working together with my fellow board members and the agency’s excellent staff to ensure that the construction ahead is successful and that we do everything in our power to complete the project to Montclair as soon as possible.”
The new leadership and makeup of the board comes when the Construction Authority is already underway on construction of the 12.3-mile Glendora to Montclair light rail extension; but at a time where the agency is responding to unexpectedly high bids from the teams competing to win the Alignment design-build contract. The agency has identified a need to secure another $570 million to complete the full project to Montclair and is currently undergoing environmental review to evaluate impacts associated with the La Verne and/or Pomona station becoming a potential temporary terminus while the shortfall is sought.
The Foothill Gold Line board is made up of elected and appointed representatives from throughout the project corridor. In addition to the two new members, Duarte Mayor and Metro Board Member John Fasana, Ontario Mayor Paul Leon, Ontario Council Member Alan Wapner (non-voting), Pasadena Council Member Gene Masuda (non-voting), Los Angeles representative Melchor Ilomin and South Pasadena representative Dan Evans (non-voting) also sit on the board. The Governor’s appointee is currently vacant.
Project Funding Update
In December, the Metro board unanimously approved a motion reaffirming the agency’s commitment to funding and completing the Foothill Gold Line from Glendora to Montclair as a first priority project and to identify funding sources and approaches to fill the $570 million funding gap identified by the Construction Authority through the currently on-going procurement. The Metro board directed their CEO to report back this month with a funding strategy to be able to pay to extend the base portion of the contract beyond La Verne to Pomona, and a strategy to pay for the contractual option to extend the scope of the contract to Claremont and Montclair.
Since that meeting, the Construction Authority and LA Metro have worked closely together and identified $133 million in cost reductions strategies for the project; leaving an estimated $97 million remaining to fill the estimated shortfall to be able to build to Pomona and $340 million to be able to build to Claremont (LA County’s portion).
At the Metro board meeting this month, Metro staff is bringing a draft funding plan forward that would commit to funding the Pomona Station as part of the base contract for the project while proposing several longer-term funding options that could potentially fill the gap within the contract option timeline. At the board committee meeting this week, committee members emphasized that the proposed sources included in the staff report are not the only options available – responding to concerns raised by several cities about a few of the options included in the report.
The committee recommended approval of the staff recommendation, and the item now goes to the full Metro board for consideration next Thursday. For more information, click on the link to read the staff report: Item 34 on the LA Metro board January agenda.
Supplemental Environmental Impact Report Process Has Begun, Plus Updated Anticipated Timeline to Award Design-Build Contract
The Construction Authority has initiated the preparation of a Supplemental Environmental Impact Report (SEIR) to evaluate the potential for significant impacts that may result from potentially phasing the construction and operation of the Glendora to Montclair Project, as a result of the current funding shortfall. The SEIR will evaluate potential impacts associated with the La Verne Station and/or Pomona Station becoming a possible temporary terminus, while the agency seeks additional funding to be able to complete the project to Montclair.
The SEIR includes the anticipated timing of each phase, as well as evaluates the impacts of relocating the future parking location for the Pomona Station from the north side of the station to the south side.
In December, the Construction Authority hosted a public scoping meeting which officially kicked off the SEIR process. Over the coming months, the Draft SEIR will be completed and available for public review. It is anticipated that the Draft document will be out in March/April for a 45-day public review period and the Final SEIR will be completed in May/June for consideration/approval. Certification of the document is anticipated this summer, ahead of the anticipated award of the design-build contract (see timeline below).
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