USA: Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority has been given the green light by the Federal Transit Administration to proceed this year with the $1∙7bn Crenshaw/LAX light rail line running between the Expo Line on Exposition Boulevard and the Green Line at Aviation/LAX. Metro had already invited proposals in December for a design-build contract to construct the line.

FTA’s Record of Decision clears the way for Metro to apply for federal funding, acquire property, relocate utilities and purchase rolling stock for the 13∙6 km line, which is scheduled for opening in 2018. With six stations, the line will serve the Crenshaw Corridor, Inglewood, and the area around Los Angeles International Airport. A maintenance facility would be built at Arbor Vitae/Bellanca, along with three park-and-ride sites. There is also an option for an extra station at Crenshaw/Vernon.

‘The Crenshaw/LAX Line will not only bring light rail to the residents of South LA and the LAX area, but it will create thousands of badly needed jobs’, said Metro Board Chairman and LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. ‘This is another step forward for a Measure R project, which voters approved in 2008 and will bring LA the 21st century transit network Angelenos deserve.’