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Orange Line Bus Rapid Transit Sustainable Corridor Implementation Plan

Introduction

In spring of 2011, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro), in partnership with the City of Los Angeles, was awarded a grant from the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) to prepare the Orange Line Bus Rapid Transit Sustainable Corridor Implementation Plan (Orange Line BRT Sustainable CIP). Metro, the City of Los Angeles, and SCAG retained Raimi + Associates and its consultant team of The Center for Transit-Oriented Development and Nelson\Nygaard to assist with the planning effort.

The Orange Line BRT Sustainable CIP identifies a range of improvements to the Orange Line and the fourteen station areas on its original alignment – such as land use changes, catalyst projects, streetscape improvements, and transit connections – that will increase transit use for commuters and discretionary riders, reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and advance Metro’s sustainable development principles. The four main goals of the Orange Line BRT Sustainable CIP are to:

  • Identify strategies to better integrate transportation and land use decisions;
  • Identify transportation measures that support station-area and community plans;
  • Identify and prioritize staff time and resources to implement TOD-related projects by determining where improvements will have the most positive impact; and
  • Support Metro’s Sustainability Principles.

The Orange Line BRT Sustainable CIP is intended to build on the success of the Orange Line by providing recommendations to create a network of transit-oriented districts (TODs) at station areas along the corridor. The study further develops the concepts identified in the 2010 CTOD report on Transit-Oriented Districts titled “Creating Successful Transit-Oriented Districts in Los Angeles: A Citywide Toolkit for Achieving Regional Goals.”1

Creating transit-oriented districts is one strategy to achieve sustainability in the Los Angeles region. To provide direction for planning and programming activities, Metro developed the Sustainable Communities Planning Framework and associated Countywide Sustainability Planning Policy. The Framework establishes an approach for embedding social, economic, and environmental sustainability throughout Metro’s functions, and these principles are at the core of the Orange Line BRT Sustainable CIP. Metro plays a unique role in facilitating a more sustainable future for the Los Angeles region. The agency plans, funds, constructs, and operates a transportation system that improves Angelenos’ health and well-being, strengthens the economy, and enhances the natural environment.

Recognizing this, Metro has adopted the following principles:

1. Connect People and Places

  • Access. Better integrate land-use and transportation planning to reduce trip lengths and increase travel choices.
  • Prosperity. Reduce transportation costs for residents and provide the mobility necessary to increase economic competitiveness.
  • Green Modes. Promote clean mobility options to reduce criteria pollutants, greenhouse gas emissions, and dependence on foreign oil.

2. Create Community Value

  • Healthy Neighborhoods. Improve public health through traffic safety, reduced exposure to pollutants, and design for walking and biking.
  • Community Development. Design and build transportation facilities that promote infill development, build community identity, and support social and economic activity.
  • Urban Greening: Enhance and restore natural systems to mitigate the impacts of transportation projects on communities and wildlife.

3. Conserve Resources

  • Context Sensitivity. Build upon the unique strengths of Los Angeles County’s communities through strategies that match local and regional context and support investment in existing communities.
  • System Productivity. Increase the efficiency and ensure the long-term viability of the multimodal transportation system.
  • Environmental Stewardship. Plan and support transportation improvements that minimize material and resource use through conservation, re-use, re-cycling and re-purposing.

The Orange Line BRT Sustainable CIP explicitly supports these key priorities, working to advance Metro’s Sustainable Communities Planning Framework and Countywide Sustainability Planning Policy by creating transit-oriented districts along the Orange Line. This study and the districts that result can be a model for how other transit corridors and stations areas within Metro’s service area can develop and how multiple agencies can work together to create transit-oriented districts.

The Orange Line Sustainable Corridor Implementation Plan includes the following sections:

  • Chapter 1: Introduction. This chapter introduces the purpose of the report and provides a background on the Orange Line BRT system.
  • Chapter 2: An Overview of Transit-Oriented Districts. This chapter summarizes the concept and benefits of Transit-Oriented Development.
  • Chapter 3: Corridor-Level Conclusions and Recommendations. This chapter provides an overview of the conclusions of the study and specific recommendations for future corridor-wide improvements.
  • Chapter 4: Recommended Station-Area Improvements. This chapter provides more detailed information for each station area, including background information, the future intent of each station area, and specific recommendations for improvements that go beyond the corridor-wide recommendations.
  • Chapter 5: Moving Forward. This chapter provides a high-level roadmap for how the recommendations in the plan will be implemented over time. It includes potential funding sources, priorities for each station area, initial actions, and a list of partners needed to implement the vision and recommendations in this plan.

Appendices

At the end of the report area a series of appendices that provide additional information on the project. The appendices are:

  • Appendix A: Relevant Policy Documents and Implementation Activity
  • Appendix B: Corridor Conditions
  • Appendix C: Station-Area Profiles
  • Appendix D: Results from Public Workshops
  • Appendix E: Results from Online Survey
  • Appendix F: Corridor Working Group Outreach List
  • Appendix G: GHG and Health Analysis

Footnote

1 Creating Successful Transit-Oriented Districts in Los Angeles: A Citywide Toolkit for Achieving Regional Goals. Center for Transit Oriented Development (CTOD), February 2010.