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Union Station Master Plan comment summary

Union Station Master Plan comment summary

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Published by Metro Los Angeles
Public comments on draft alternatives released.
Public comments on draft alternatives released.

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Published by: Metro Los Angeles on May 31, 2013
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01/09/2014

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LOS ANGELES UNION STATION MASTER PLANDRAFT ALTERNATIVESSUMMARY OF WRITTEN COMMENTSMay 17, 2013
INTRODUCTION
The Union Station Master Plan kicked off in August 2012, a year and a half after Metro purchasedUnion Station. The master plan process has been divided into three tasks; Task I consists largely of data collection, analysis and development of the Program; Task II crafts the draft alternatives; and TaskIII will develop a preferred plan, with several technical memoranda on implementation. Outreach to abroad array of community stakeholders and transit operators at key intervals of the planning process,to reflect their feedback and input, is a crucial element of the master plan.A community workshop was held on May 2, 2013 to present the draft alternatives to the public. Thepublic was asked to provide comments at the workshop or to submit them by May 10, 2013. Thissummary provides an overview of the public comments received by that deadline. The feedback thatwas received is assisting the master planning team in further refining the draft alternatives andlayering additional information that will be presented both to community stakeholders in August 2013and to the Metro Board of Directors in September 2013. At the September Board meeting, the Boardwill be asked to give direction on a preferred alternative to be further developed as the final UnionStation Master Plan.
Description of the Project Area
After purchasing Union Station in 2011, the Board directed Metro staff to undertake a masterplanning process to create long-term planning guidelines that will ultimately transform Union Stationinto a world class transit facility. The master planning project area encompasses roughly 47 acresincluding the transportation hub and adjacent properties. The guiding land use document, the City of Los Angeles Alameda District Specific Plan, allows for 7 million square feet of developable land withflexible programming uses. While under the leadership of former owner Catellus, a few key parcels
 
 
were sold to private companies. This includes the Mozaic Apartments on the northern edge and theMetropolitan Water District (MWD) and First 5 LA along the western perimeter.Union Station is the regional transit hub for Los Angeles County. Available on site are the Metro GoldLine light rail, Metro Red and Purple Line heavy rail, Metrolink Commuter Rail and Amtrak intercityrail. In addition the station serves 19 Metro-operated bus lines, and a variety of other municipal buslines, local and long distance bus operators, employer-based shuttles and the LAX Flyaway. With thepassage of Measure R in 2008 and expanded Federal funding for transportation projects via MAP-21,Los Angeles County will see nearly a doubling in size of its current transit system over the next tenyears.In addition, the California High Speed Rail Authority projects it will bring high speed rail service toUnion Station by 2028.
Description of the Scoping and Draft Alternatives Outreach Process
Community stakeholders were given advance notice of the Task II Community Workshop throughvarious outreach methods including email, printed media on Metro buses and rail, social media,various newspapers and project website announcements. At the May 2
nd
meeting, all attendees weregiven a comment form to fill out. Additionally, staff members were present at 5 “hubs” to answer anyquestions and to clarify information on the four preliminary draft alternatives and the master planningprocess. For those unable to attend the meeting in person, the presentation and presentation materialswere also made available online through a streaming video service, available atMetro’s project website.After the meeting, reminders were sent out to the project database and the project Facebook page, toencourage review of the information and return of the comment forms by May 10
th
. This report is asummary of the findings from the comment forms.
ISSUE SUMMARYSummary of Public Comments
Following the May 2
nd
community meeting, a total of 44 comment sheets, emails and comments weresubmitted. All comments were reviewed and the most frequently stated comments were organizedinto 6 broad categories. This summary highlights the most often raised comments and questions.
 
 
Transit Optimization:
 
Vignes options too far away and exacerbates issues with mode shifts and transit connections
 
Vignes is a heavy bus route and might make construction and implementation difficult/disruptbus service
 
What’s happening with Patsaouras Plaza?
 
What is the nature of high speed rail security, if any?
 
Where are taxis going to be located?
 
Imperative to have better connections between Red/Purple and Gold lines
Visual Appeal:
 
Remove parking from the front of the station and convert to open green space
 
Involve artist community
 
Showcase and preserve gardens
 
In general, more open and green space is needed
 
High speed rail “Above the Rail Yard” option will be visually displeasing to profile of historicstation
Passenger Experience:
 
Consolidated ticketing for all operators
 
More and better maintained bathrooms at Union Station
 
Improved signage with international symbols
 
Seismology concerns with underground options
 
Concerns with underground options: people should be exposed to as much natural light and freshair as possible, given Los Angeles’ mild climate
 
Venting issues with underground options
 
Add a people mover in passageway to ease mobility for those with luggage or disabilities
Retail and Housing:
 
Include street vendors
 
Include a hotel on the property
 
Include housing, especially affordable housing

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