Foothill Gold Line Board Welcomes New Leadership
Newly-appointed board members, from Pomona and La Verne, are named chair and vice chair
At their January meeting, the Foothill Gold Line Construction Authority (Construction Authority) board of directors welcomed two new members: Pomona Mayor Tim Sandoval and La Verne Council Member Robin Carder. These new appointments come following last month’s retirements of longtime board members Doug Tessitor and Sam Pedroza, after having served on the board for nearly a decade. Following the swearing in of the two new members, the board voted unanimously to have them lead the nine-member board: Mayor Sandoval as Chair and Council Member Carder as Vice Chair.
The new leadership and makeup of the board comes when the Construction Authority is already underway on construction of the 12.3-mile Glendora to Montclair light rail extension; but at a time where the agency is responding to unexpectedly high bids from the teams competing to win the Alignment design-build contract. The agency has identified a need to secure another $570 million to complete the full project to Montclair and is currently undergoing environmental review to evaluate impacts associated with the La Verne and/or Pomona station becoming a potential temporary terminus while the shortfall is sought.
The Foothill Gold Line board is made up of elected and appointed representatives from throughout the project corridor. In addition to the two new members, Duarte Mayor and Metro Board Member John Fasana, Ontario Mayor Paul Leon, Ontario Council Member Alan Wapner (non-voting), Pasadena Council Member Gene Masuda (non-voting), Los Angeles representative Melchor Ilomin and South Pasadena representative Dan Evans (non-voting) also sit on the board. The Governor’s appointee is currently vacant.
Project Funding Update
In December 2018, the Metro Board unanimously reaffirmed the agency’s commitment to completing the Foothill Gold Line from Glendora to Claremont (LA County portion) as a first priority project and to identify funding sources and approaches to fill the estimated $570 million funding gap identified by the Construction Authority through the currently on-going procurement.
Since that vote, staff from the Construction Authority and LA Metro have worked closely together and identified $133 million in cost reduction strategies for the project; leaving an estimated $97 million shortfall to be able to build to Pomona and an estimated $340 million shortfall to be able to build to Claremont. An additional $20 million is estimated to be needed to be able to build to Montclair.
Then in January, the Metro board agreed to ensure sufficient funding so the base project within the design-build contract can include the Pomona Station, while we collectively continue to seek the additional funding needed to be able to complete the project from Pomona to Montclair.
With this important commitment, the Construction Authority will request new bids from the design-build teams competing for the project that includes the Pomona Station as part of the base project under procurement, with a contract option to allow the winning bidder to complete the full project to Montclair if funds are identified within two years following the notice to proceed. The final cost for the portion to Pomona and to Montclair will be known when bids are received in May. The ability to phase construction of the line is currently undergoing environmental review (see details later in this update).
Supplemental Environmental Impact Report Process Has Begun, Plus Updated Anticipated Timeline to Award Design-Build Contract
The Construction Authority has initiated the preparation of a Supplemental Environmental Impact Report (SEIR) to evaluate the potential for significant impacts that may result from potentially phasing the construction and operation of the Glendora to Montclair Project – see map below for details. The SEIR will also evaluate the impacts of relocating the future parking location for the Pomona Station from the north side of the station to the south side.
In December, the Construction Authority hosted a public scoping meeting which officially kicked off the SEIR process. Over the coming months, the Draft SEIR will be completed and available for public review. It is anticipated that the Draft document will be out in March/April for a 45-day public review period and the Final SEIR will be completed in May/June for consideration/approval. Certification of the document is anticipated this summer, ahead of the anticipated award of the design-build contract: