On April 25, 2008, the U.S. Department of Transportation (the "Department") announced its designation of Los Angeles, CA, as a CRD Partner, based on the terms of an agreement signed by the Department and its Los Angeles Partner Agencies: the California Department of Transportation ("CALTRANS") and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority ("Metro"). On July 24, 2008, the Department and its Partner Agencies amended and restated the CRD Agreement. Under the terms of the new CRD Agreement (the "CRD Agreement"), the Partner Agencies have committed to providing non-Federal funding - at an estimated total of $131 million - to convert the high-occupancy vehicle ("HOV") lanes on I-10 and I-110 to dynamically-priced high-occupancy toll ("HOT") lanes. If financing is available and appropriate legal authority is enacted, the Partner Agencies have additionally committed to converting the HOV lanes on I-210 to dynamically-priced HOT lanes as well. In exchange for these commitments, the Department has agreed to provide the Partner Agencies with substantial Federal transit funding. The CRD Agreement also reflects a reduction in funding available for Metro from $213.6 million dollars to $210.6 million because of a law recently passed by Congress.
Projects Los Angeles will implement
1. HOV-to-HOT conversions. A long-term goal of the Los Angeles Region is to implement a broad network of congestion-priced lanes. The CRD Agreement commits the Partner Agencies to establishing the first phase of such a network through HOV-to-HOT conversions on the following facilities: (a) I-10 from Alameda Street to I-605 (28 lane-miles), and (b) I-110 from 182nd Street/Artesia Transit Center to Adams Blvd (33 miles). Subject to the availability of financing and the enactment of appropriate legal authority, the Partner Agencies will also implement a HOV-to-HOT conversion along I-210 from I-210/SR 134/I-710 to I-605 (24 lane miles).
2. Transit projects. To support the successful and equitable operation of congestion pricing, L.A. will enhance its transit service offerings and make reimbursements for congested trips on the HOT lanes in accordance with the CRD Agreement. The Partner Agencies may use Federal grant funding under the CRD Agreement to implement any of a wide list of projects listed on the region's Adopted 2006 Regional Transportation Improvement Program, so long as such projects are eligible for funding under the programmatic source of the Federal grants. Such projects could include bus fleet acquisitions, park-and-ride facility improvements, or numerous other transit-related activities.
Under the terms of the CRD Agreement, the HOT lanes shall be in revenue operation no later than December 31, 2010, unless otherwise agreed by DOT and the Partner Agencies.
Other key terms of the agreement
The Partner Agencies may not draw down any funding obligated in connection with the CRD Agreement until they comply with the following conditions (among others):
Sources and amounts of Federal funding
Under the terms of the CRD Agreement, the Department will provide the Partner Agencies with $210.6 million in funding appropriated under the Federal Transit Administration's 5309 Bus and Bus Facilities Program. As described above, the Partner Agencies may use this funding to support a variety of transit projects. The Department also reserves the right to extend loan financing or to facilitate procurement of additional project financing, in either case to aid in the implementation of the I-210 HOV-to-HOT conversion.
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