The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) has signed a Letter of Intent with Aerial Rapid Transit Technologies LLC (ARTT), an action that formally begins the negotiations necessary to make a privately-funded aerial gondola to Dodgers Stadium a reality.
The Letter of Intent signals Metro’s interest in implementing the project and moves it from the Unsolicited Proposals evaluation stage to project development. Metro and ARTT will now negotiate to reach agreements on roles and responsibilities for planning and constructing the gondola.
Metro has run the popular Dodger Stadium Express free bus service from Union Station since 2010. A second route between Harbor Gateway Transit Center in the South Bay and the ballpark was added in 2015.
A gondola and other options for improving access to Dodger Stadium were part of an informational study in 1990 by the Los Angeles County Transportation Commission, which later merged with the RTD to form Metro. The idea was never pursued until earlier this year when ARTT revived the concept and submitted an unsolicited proposal to Metro’s Office of Extraordinary Innovation.
Metro created its Unsolicited Proposals program in 2016 to encourage innovation through partnerships with the private sector that would not have occurred through the agency’s normal procurement process.
“This proposal is precisely the kind of out-of-the-box thinking we envisioned when we set up our Unsolicited Proposals process,” said Metro Chief Innovation Officer Joshua Schank. “By allowing potential partners to come to us with ideas and solutions, Metro has positioned itself to tap into the creativeness and ingenuity of private sector innovation.”