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Waxman's Letter to MTA About Westside Subway

The 30th District of California representative for the U.S. Congress is requesting careful consideration of the Century City location.

The following is a letter Rep. Henry A. Waxman sent to the Metro Board, dated April 12.

Mr. Arthur T. Leahy
Chief Executive Officer
Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority
One Gateway Plaza
Los Angeles, California 90012

Dear Mr. Leahy:

As a strong proponent of the Westside Subway Extension, I write to request the Metro Board's careful consideration of the Century City station location as it reviews the Final Environmental Impact Statement/Report for the project.

As you know, subway safety has been a top priority of mine. I have heard a great deal of concern from the Beverly Hills community about the proposed Century City station at Constellation Boulevard, because of the possible safety risks involved with tunneling under Beverly Hills High School. The City of Beverly Hills and the Beverly Hills Unified School District have commissioned independent studies and made a strong case that the route poses safety risks and would be less desirable for cost, speed and ridership. These concerns must be weighed carefully alongside the study commissioned by Metro, which identifies serious seismic concerns for alternate station locations on Santa Monica Boulevard.

I appreciate your assurances that safety is Metro's number one consideration. Safety should remain the top concern as the Metro Board evaluates the EIS/EIR and the Century City station. I would urge the Metro Board to only chose a route that would require tunneling under the school if there is a definitive conclusion that it is the safest alternative.

With kind regards,

Sincerely,

Henry A. Waxman
Member of Congress 

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Ken Goldman April 14, 2012 at 07:01 PM
First--About Constellation being in the center of Century City. OK, but it is only ONE BLOCK (OK, a long block) away from the station originally proposed by Metro. People in NY, Paris, London, SF, DC, etc etc would be laughing at us if they knew this rukus was all about walking ONE BLOCK. Moving it to Constellation would also leave out all the office buildings along S.M. Blvd. (if you buy into Metro's logic that people will only walk one block) and would leave out all the employees and visitors at the Hilton! To Metro's cool aid that it is completely safe: There have been 5 fatal subway construction accidents (Cologne,Sao Paulo, Korea and China) in the past few years. And in Hollywood, the contractor built subway walls at HALF the prescribed thickness for several hundred feet. And in Boston's big dig, just a few years ago, the tunnel there collapsed. Accidents happen. Why put the High School in danger when there is an acceptable alternative route (other than the exaggerated seismic risk for a fault that last moved seriously some 3,000 years ago)!!!! Beverly Hills first backed the Westside extension--until Metro pulled its bait and switch and changed the route to go under the High School. There is a reason there is no school in all of California that has a subway under it. And, NO that it would only go under a soccer field and new building. It would go directly under one of the original high school buildings, right down the middle of the campus. Ken Goldman
RTL April 15, 2012 at 10:01 PM
There is comparatively little danger of subways collapsing with earthquakes. The most dangerous thing is panic. Even if there is a blackout, trains run on to the next station by inertia. Emergency lights will go on as well, so keep calm and follow the staff's instructions. Beverly Hills is looking foolish throughout this process. Grow up Beverly Hills! The subway is safe and necessary.
Beverly Hill April 17, 2012 at 08:30 AM
Waxman is actually only asking to be assured that the subway itself is "safe", he voiced no concern what so ever over the impact the subway project may have on the high school or upon the families who depend on BHHS. It would not seem unreasonable to request such an inquiry when something so vital to the community of Beverly Hills is at stake.
cutop April 19, 2012 at 01:59 AM
I am a Beverly Hills resident who has no problem with the tunnels running under the high school. My only concern is that the high school wishes to do major construction on its campus. To build safely on top of the tunnels, the high school would have to build costly "bridges" over the tunnels. I think a great compromise would be for MTA to pay those costs when the high school proceeds with its construction plans.
Bart Hayes May 03, 2012 at 01:51 AM
Thank god someone is thinking about the children. The children! Will no one think of the children?

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