(Schools within 1/3rd of a mile of the Expo Line)

At their November 13, 2007 meeting, the LAUSD Board unanimously adopted the Keeping Kids Safe Resolution presented by Board Members Marguerite LaMotte & Julie Korenstein supporting the position of the community requesting Expo Line grade separation at Farmdale (Dorsey HS), opposing Expo Line at-grade crossings in close proximity to school sites that aren’t sufficiently mitigated, and directing their legal department to fight to such ends.

Continue reading to view the full text of the resolution:

Whereas, The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) Expo Light Rail Line is proposed to operate primarily at-grade;

Whereas, According to the Summary of Metro Blue Line Train/Vehicle and Train Pedestrian Accident Report (7/90-6/07), in 17 years of operating primarily at-grade, the Metro Blue Line has become the nation’s deadliest and most accident-prone light rail line in the country, and statistics indicate 88 deaths and 795 accidents have occurred in urban areas with lower vehicular and pedestrian traffic volume and residential density than the Expo Rail Line corridor;

Whereas, The proposed Expo Line’s median-running and side-street running designs from the intersection of 11th and Flower Streets to Arlington Avenue and Exposition Boulevard is the exact replica of the most accident prone portion of the MTA’s Blue Line;

Whereas, The Los Angeles Unified School District Distance Criteria for School Siting precludes schools from being built within 128 feet of an active rail line; unless the risk is found to be less than significant;

Whereas, The property line of Susan Miller Dorsey High School, with a student population of over 1,600, is within 20 feet of the proposed at-grade Expo Rail Line crossings;

Whereas, The property line of Foshay Learning Center, with a student population of over 3,400, is within 50 feet of the proposed at-grade Expo Rail Line crossings;

Whereas, The Expo Line is proposed to operate within walking distance of Foshay Learning Center, Theodore T. Alexander Science Center Elementary School, Weemes Elementary, Baldwin Hills Elementary School, and Dorsey High School;

Whereas, On a daily basis thousands of students walk in close proximity and cross the Expo Line tracks, which encompasses several safe passage school routes;

Whereas, To ensure a quality learning environment, interior and exterior noise levels must maintain acoustical standards not exceeding American National Standards Institute guidelines (ANSI S.12.60-2002) and criteria established by the Collaborative for High Performing Schools (CHPS);

Whereas, The Expo Rail Line trains will blow its horns on approach and through each at-grade crossing near District schools as frequently as 30 times per hour;

Whereas, Horn blowing would not be required if the Expo Line is constructed above or below grade, and noise impacts would be significantly reduced;

Whereas, The increased traffic and vehicles idling near the school sites will have an adverse effect on the health of school occupants;

Whereas, MTA is making the investment to eliminate all at-grade crossings on the Expo Rail Line in the City of Culver City; and

Whereas, MTA is making the investment to construct an underpass at Figueroa Street and Exposition Boulevard adjacent to the University of Southern California; now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Los Angeles Unified School District supports the position of the community, which opposes the at-grade design of the Expo Light Rail Line at the Farmdale crossing;

Resolved further, That the District is opposed to the operation of any at-grade design of the Expo Light Rail Line along streets in close proximity to school sites, unless it is demonstrated that alternative mitigation measures will eliminate all safety hazards; and be it finally

Resolved, That the Governing Board of the Los Angeles Unified School District directs the Superintendent to exhaust all legal options in working with the MTA to eliminate all at-grade crossings along the proposed Expo Line that present a significant risk to pedestrian safety.

The Resolution can be downloaded in pdf format by clicking here.

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Agency Opposition & Reservations

Posted by Fix Expo Team On September - 27 - 2007 ADD COMMENTS

Here are just a few of the documents and memos the Fix Expo Team has found:


The LAUSD has registered its reservations with the at-grade design of the Expo Line going back at least to 2001. Here are some quick links to the documents:

1) In his comments to the Draft EIR, then Superintendent Roy Romer request a below grade portion from the I-110 to west of Vermont and the LAUSD inter-office memo regarding the large number of bus routes serving many students including special needs kids on the corridor. The comments appear in Volume 2B1 of the Final EIR here on pages 28-35.

2) Shortly after the Final EIR was certified in December 2005, in large part to the proding of some of the founding members of Expo Communities United the LAUSD Office of Environmental Health and Safety sent a formal letter opposing the Expo Line at-grade design: 33KB pdf

3) The Parent Collaborative also submitted their letter of opposition, adding to the concerns of the LAUSD OEHS, the special needs children who would have their learning environments irreparably harmed: 38KB pdf

4) Among OEHS basis for opposition is their Distance Criteria for School Siting, which requires a new school be built no less than 128 feet from a rail line: 36KB pdf

Public Utilities Commission Staff

The PUC Staff has expressed reservations about the MTA Grade Separation Policy numerous times:

1) PUC Staff comments to the Final EIR: 176KB pdf

2) PUC Response to the Preliminary Grade Crossing Hazards Analysis submitted by Expo/Metro: 252KB pdf

3) PUC’s comments during the Expo Field Diagnostic Meetings requesting the USC trench be extended beyond Vermont: 276KB pdf

4) PUC’s Meeting Minutes regarding problems with the Dorsey High School “holding pen”: 172KB pdf


Among the sternest concerns are those expressed in the May 17, 2007 letter from Gloria Jeff to Rick Thorpe calling the Expo Park event management plan will “lead to gridlock” and is “unsafe for pedestrians”: 92KB pdf

And there’s plenty more to be scanned and uploaded.

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Next Meeting: Mon Jan 11

Join us at our first community update and organizing meeting in the new decade as we discuss the on-going Farmdale controversy and Crenshaw subway effort.

Campaign for Stimulus & Measure R Funds to Grade Separate the South LA Portion of Expo

MTA now has more resources that by law has to be spent on rapid transit expansion. Now is our time to request these resources go toward FIXING EXPO!

Responding to MTA Spin & Deception

A comprehensive response to the spin, red herrings, and half-truths delivered by MTA/Expo, complete with agency memos, testimony, studies, pictures, videos and all.

Separate & Unequal: Expo Phase 1

Compare the design of the Expo Line Phase 1 west of La Cienega to that in majority-minority South LA and it’s clear that Expo Phase 1 is textbook environmental racism.