Two of the largest public transit projects planned as part of Los Angeles’ effort to create a comprehensive rail system traversing Los Angeles County got the nod in President Obama’s budget.
The budget earmarked $50 million from the New Starts program to the Westside Subway project, which would connect Westwood to the Red Line that runs from Hollywood to downtown Los Angeles, and $31 million to the regional connector, which would provide a downtown hub for existing lines. It would be a base point for funding the potentially expensive projects, assuming Congress even approves the appropriations.
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has been one of the staunchest supporters of the New Starts program, which he deems essential in achieving his 30-10 plan, an effort to complete 30 years of public transit projects in Los Angeles in 10 years by leveraging federal dollars.
“The president has come through for Los Angeles County,” Villaraigosa said in a statement. “Now it is Congress’ turn: The House and Senate should pass the New Starts transit funding in the president’s budget so we can put people back to work.”