The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) announced that it welcomed the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Administrator Amit Bose to the site of the Doran Street Grade Separation Project, the recent recipient of a $38.3 million Railroad Crossing Elimination (RCE) Grant from the FRA.
The project will improve safety at the Doran Street crossing, which has one of the highest numbers of safety-related incidents involving vehicles, bicycles, or pedestrians in Los Angeles County.
"Through President Biden's Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we are helping build safer and more connected communities. FRA is proud to partner with the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority to fund a grade separation and safety improvements at the Doran Street crossing, one of the most dangerous in Los Angeles County," said Amit Bose, Administrator of the FRA. "With a $38.3 million federal grant, we are making daily life safer for drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians and investing in a rail corridor used by millions of riders each day.”
Doran Street Grade Separation Project Details
The project will make it easier for traffic to get around railroad tracks by building a grade-separated structure that links Los Angeles and Glendale by connecting West San Fernando Road to the Fairmont Avenue bridge, closing the at-grade crossing, and improving the second busiest intercity rail passenger corridor in the U.S., serving 8 million riders per day by Metrolink, Amtrak, and freight trains.
“LA Metro is taking steps to make Los Angeles safer for people who are walking, biking, or taking public transportation. The Federal Railroad Administration’s grant will help us make progress toward that goal at the Doran Street crossing, an area well-known for safety incidents. I helped pass the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law while I was in Congress and I am glad to see that investment going to an important safety and transportation project in Los Angeles,” said Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Karen Bass.
The federal funding provided for the Doran Street Grade Separation Project was made possible through the FRA’s Railroad Crossing Elimination Grant Program.
This grant will enable Metro to begin construction in 2025. Metro is providing a 28% local funding match for the FRA grant award to help pay for the $61.8 million project. The project is now fully funded and will officially begin construction scheduling.
“I am encouraged that the FRA has decided to direct robust federal funding to a critical rail safety project in our region,” said Ara Najarian, Metro and Metrolink Board member. Najarian is the immediate past chair of the Metro and Metrolink boards of directors. “The Doran Street Grade Separation project – once completed - will enhance the safety of thousands of individuals in Glendale and the City of Los Angeles who drive, bike, and walk across this busy intersection every day. I want to thank FRA Administrator Amit Bose for his leadership in making this welcome news possible.”
Up to 90 trains per day use the tracks in this area and train volumes are anticipated to increase to 116 trains per weekday by the time the project is complete in 2027.
A second $220.7 million project phase will also build a nearby overpass at Salem and Sperry streets in Glendale. This project element will increase non-motorized access to employment, residences, and recreational opportunities in an area that is currently blocked off by the Los Angeles River and the 134 Freeway.
“As a longtime proponent of the Doran Street Grade Separation project, I want to wholeheartedly thank FRA Administrator Amit Bose for providing $38 million in federal funding for this crucial safety project,” said Kathryn Barger, Los Angeles County supervisor. “I valued holding a productive dialogue with Administrator Bose previously this year in Washington, DC. I commend the FRA for directing Railroad Crossing Grant dollars to the Doran Street Grade Separation project. It will undoubtedly result in far-reaching improved safety for Metrolink, Amtrak, and freight trains operating in the cities of Los Angeles and Glendale.”
Los Angeles County Grants
In addition to the grant for the Doran Street Grade Separation project, Los Angeles County received two grants from the Railroad Crossing Elimination Grant Program: one grant was for the Rail Crossing Elimination Master Plan (up to $600,160) and a second grant for the Sierra Highway Crossing Elimination Planning Project (up to $704,000).
“This project, funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, is critical to increasing pedestrian and vehicle safety along this busy intercity passenger rail corridor,” said Metro CEO Stephanie Wiggins. “Thanks to the strong partnership between our agency, Metrolink, and FRA, thousands of Los Angeles County residents will soon have a safer route to work, school, or wherever they need to go. I thank the Federal Rail Administration, Administrator Amit Bose, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, and the Metro Board of Directors for making this needed investment in rail safety.”