The Westside Subway Extension Study team held a special meeting last night to discuss the impacts of tunneling between Century City and Westwood. UCLA Transportation staff members, along with current UCLA students, staff, and Bruins for Traffic Relief, were in attendance.

This meeting was a big deal because of the boards like the one pictured below, which revealed the 12 potential routes that the subway might take between Century City and Westwood. The tracts that might be tunneled under are highlighted in purple (note: the exact tract numbers were not disclosed at the meeting; that will occur when the draft EIR/EIS is released in August or September).

Be A Green Commuter readers may be pleasantly surprised (as I was) to learn that of the 16 comments made in public, 15 were in support of the subway and 1 person asked a question. Several of the commenters identified themselves as homeowners whose homes might one day be above a tunnel. One person said he was a architect who has built sound recording studios around the world, including several directly above subway tunnels, and he hasn't had any client issues.

Fox TV covered the story:


Another thing impressed upon attendees at this meeting was the importance of the federal government getting behind the 30/10 initiative. The concept, which originated in Mayor Villaraigosa's office, is to have the federal government loan Metro the money to build the projects outlined in Measure R, including the subway, so that Metro may build these projects within 10 years.

The idea has caught on.

Earlier this month, Senator Dianne Feinstein sought $10 million dollars to help pay for planning the subway in next year's federal government.

Congressman Henry Waxman has embraced the 30/10 concept too; yesterday, he sent a letter to the Federal Transit Administration asking the agency to rate the whole subway project for federal funding (nicknamed New Starts) as one, instead of evaluating it in phases. This is beneficial for at least two reasons, according to Metro's The Source, one of which being the project scores better if it is evaluated in its entirety, including the Westwood station (which will be heavily used because of its proximity to UCLA and its 60,000 commuters).

How to do more?

  • Have you joined the Westside Subway Extension's Facebook Page (http://www.facebook.com/westsidesubwayextension)? Or followed them on Twitter (@westsidesubway)