Measure R, the half-cent sales tax approved by 68 percent of L.A. County voters in Nov. 2008 to finance new transportation projects and programs, could generate as much as $68.8 billion in economic output in the five-county Southern California region and create more than 500,000 jobs over the 30-year period, according to a new study released on Thursday by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. (LAEDC). At least $9.3 billion in tax revenues will be generated in relation to the transportation construction projects.
The study, “The Construction Impact of Metro’s Measure R Transportation Projects,” estimates that Measure R-funded construction projects could create more than half a million part-time and full-time jobs with total earnings of $22.4 billion, or an annual average of 16,900 jobs with $746 million in annual earnings. The majority of the job growth will occur in the construction industry, but other industries including manufacturing, real estate, retail trade, accommodation and food services, professional services, finance and insurance, and healthcare will also see a growth in employment due to construction-related projects.
The study highlights the total economic output associated with highway and freeway projects to be $46.3 billion. These projects include building new freeways or highways, expanding capacity on freeways and interchanges, and the construction of grade separations along major goods movement corridors and sound wall barriers. Over the 30-year period, the total number of jobs related to these projects is estimated at 341,500 or an annual average of 11,380 jobs.
Transit projects, including the construction of light and heavy rail lines, subway extensions, and the construction of bus rapid transit lines, will generate $22.5 billion in total output for the Southern California regional economy. On average, these projects will create 5,530 jobs with earnings of $244 million annually.