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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