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Streetcar Heads to CRA for $8.3 Million

By Eric Richardson
Published: Monday, February 28, 2011, at 01:47PM
LA Streetcar Rendering LA Streetcar Inc

Rendering of the proposed L.A. Streetcar project on Figueroa next to Staples Center

Fresh off receiving $1 million from City Council on Friday, backers of the L.A. Streetcar project will head to the Community Redevelopment Agency's board meeting on Thursday seeking final approval for $8.3 million that the agency had previously set aside for the project.

The funds are targeted at two key milestones for the $125 million project: the creation of a Community Facilities District that will tax property owners to provide approximately 50 percent of the project cost, and a Federal Small Starts grant application that the project hopes will provide the rest.

The first phase of the streetcar project is intended to connect L.A. Live and the Convention Center to Bunker Hill via the Broadway corridor. A preferred route will be chosen as part of the environmental review process, which is now underway.

If Thursday's item is approved, the streetcar project won't get all the funds right away. The first $900,000 would go toward the establishment of the benefit district. Another $1.2 million toward preliminary engineering would be made available once the district is authorized by City Council. $5 million would become available only once the district is approved by property owners along the route and the Federal Transit Administration agrees to provide construction funding for the project.

Meanwhile, $1.2 million will go to Metro to allow the transit agency to complete the project's environmental documents and submit the grant application.

If all funding is approved, construction of the first phase could begin by 2014.

Thursday's board meeting will take place at 9:30am in the first floor auditorium of the Garland Building, at 1200 W. 7th.

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