December 5, 2013 |

Expo Construction To Include Street Closures

Some Stations Have Name Changes

By Lynne Bronstein

Observer Reporter

The Expo Authority's latest community meeting, held October 30 at Vista Del Mar Center in Palms, offered extensive information about the progress of Phase Two of the Expo Line's construction.

What's important for Culver City residents to know at this point is that street closures and detours necessary to construction will affect their commutes during the next two months.

Glenda Silva, community relations representative for Expo, showed slides illustrating the progress of Phase Two (the segment of the line that runs west of Culver City to Santa Monica). Some of the stations have had their names changed.

The station slated to be called National/Palms is now simply Palms station; Westwood/Exposition is now Westwood (and will have parking); Expo/Sepulveda will also have parking. The remaining stations are Expo/Bundy (with parking), 26th/Bergamot, 17th Street/Santa Monica College, and the terminus at 4th Street and Colorado Avenue, in Santa Monica.

Expo engineer Warren Skraber explained the building of bridges along the Phase Two route.

"The majority of bridges are under construction or near completion," said Skraber. "Station work is ongoing and track installation is under way."

From October through November, 2013, the segment between Venice Boulevard and Motor Avenue, just north of Culver City in Palms, will be undergoing storm drain work and building of retaining walls. The same work will be ongoing between Motor and Sawtelle Boulevard.

The "falsework" (wooden bridgework) at the Venice Boulevard bridge northwest of the Culver City Expo Line station will be removed in November. There will be intermittent street closures, mostly overnight.

At Motor Avenue, removal of falsework and lowering of the actual bridge into place will be completed by mid-November.

At Sepulveda Bridge, falsework will remain in place during the "concrete pour" and the platform for the station is being constructed.

There will be utility relocations at Bagley Avenue (between Exposition and Harlow) as well as at Overland Avenue during the next few weeks. Some of the utility work is being done by third parties such as DWP, AT & T, and Verizon.

Typical work hours during the day are from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nighttime hours are from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.

"We do appreciate everyone's patience. We understand the inconvenience. It's not how we would like to do it but we are pushed into working nighttime hours," said Skraber.

The next few months will also see track installations, which will be done from the western terminus to the east. From November 15 to November 18, there will be an anticipated closing of Westwood Boulevard at the Expo Right of Way (ROW) crossing. Signage will notify drivers and pedestrians of the closing and detour.

Overland Avenue, at the Expo ROW (between Ashby Avenue and Coventry Place/Dunleer Place) will be also be closed for track installations during the weekend of November 22-25.

Construction on the Expo Line, Phase Two, has been ongoing since 2012. It has already reached the 50 per cent point. By the end of 2-13, construction should have been completed or be near completion on bridge and station construction, utility relocation, soundwalls, and track installation.

In 2014 it is anticipated that progress will include roadway improvements, station finishes, electrical systems, train control, and landscaping installation, as well as construction of a bikeway. In 2015, the line will be ready for systems testing and pre-revenue operations.

Those wishing for further information can contact Torri D.Hill of Skanska-Rados Joint Venture (SRJV) at 310.500.1485, or Heather Rozman of SRJV at heather.rozman@skanska.com.

In addition, Expo Authority and SRJV have initiated a local hire program that is dedicated to hiring local and community residents to work on Phase Two, with the goal that locals will work 30 per cent of all construction hours on the project. Community residents who live within a five mile radius of the alignment between downtown Los Angeles and Santa Monica may apply.

Disadvantaged workers who meet criteria including being a single parent, homeless, or receiving public assistance will also be considered. For applying and training or for information, please contact Joe Hernandez, local hire coordinator at (310) 807-7079.

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