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Los Angeles Needs New Funding Sources to Meet Public Transit Ambitions
Laura J. Nelson reports on the ongoing funding gaps at major transit construction projects in the Los Angeles region, amounting to billions of dollars.
"With billions of dollars still to secure, and pressure building to open as many lines as possible before the 2028 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, Metropolitan Transportation Authority officials are beginning to explore new funding models, including long-term deals with the private sector to fund and operate lines," according to Nelson.
Local officials are pressing for four major projects to be added to an already busy construction schedule. A transit line through the Sepulveda Pass, a rail line to Artesia, and an Eastside extension of the Gold Line and a Green Line extension to Torrance would be added to planned construction of "the Westside subway, the downtown Regional Connector subway, and a rail line in the San Fernando Valley," according to Nelson.
"Accelerating those lines would require $3.3 billion more for construction, interest on an additional $10 billion in debt financing and $1.2 billion to operate the lines over a decade, officials said. The figures assume the project costs won’t rise."
All of this funding anxiety comes after several projects have come in significantly over budget in recent years, as documented by Nelson.