The Expo Board of Directors approved the Funding Agreement and Design-Build contract for Phase 2 of the Expo Line on Friday afternoon. The milestones clear the way for design and construction to begin on the light rail line from Culver City to Santa Monica. Expo line service to Santa Monica is slated to begin in 2015, with pre-construction work and utility relocation planned for later this year.
The $1.5 billion Funding Agreement lays out how Measure R's half-cent sales tax revenue, in addition to state and local monies, will fund Phase 2 of the project. The agreement is between tthe Expo Authority and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
Phase 2 will be designed and built by Skanska/Rados, a heavy-engineering construction company in California. The contract, which amounts to $541.7 million, also includes a Project Labor Agreement that will make sure the project adheres to its time line and budget.
In May, a series of community meetings pertaining to the design-build process will be staged by the Expo Authority.
On Feb. 22, to derail the Expo Line failed when a Superior Court judge dismissed challenges to the project's Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR). The petition had been made by Neighbors for Smart Rail (NFSR), a neighborhood group that had also proposed mitigation measures.
NFSR said it is planning to appeal the judge's decision, but Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yarovslavsky has stated his belief that the ruling will be upheld.