Councilmember Huizar works with City to bring an additional $3.9 million in street improvements to residential areas surrounding First Street’s Metro Gold Line
Councilmember José Huizar joined with community members, Board of Public Works Commissioner Kevin James, and the City’s Bureau of Street Services Director Nazario Sauceda Thursday, May 11, 2017, to break ground on the latest upgrade for Boyle Heights, the $3.9 million Phase II of the Eastside Access Project along residential streets that feed into Metro’s Gold Line Light Rail Station on East 1st Street.
Thursday’s groundbreaking will bring pedestrian improvements on north-south linkage streets to 1st Street. These improvements include 40,000 square feet of sidewalk repair, new bus benches, trees and bus stop lighting at key intersections on Boyle Avenue, State Street, St. Louis Street and Soto Street, between Cesar Chavez Avenue and 4th Street.
“The Eastside Access Project Phase II allows us to bring streetscape improvements onto residential streets with direct input from the local community,” said Councilmember José Huizar. “For decades Boyle Heights did not receive its fair share of public infrastructure improvement dollars. Since taking office, we have worked with our partners to change that dynamic and are bringing sizable public investment to Boyle Heights to improve our public spaces, streets, sidewalks, buildings and parks and make them safer and more accessible for the people of Boyle Heights.”
Eastside Access Phase I continues and has brought $12 million in improvements along First Street. Phase II’s enhancements will benefit residents, transit riders, and several schools in the area.
The Eastside Access Project is one of a number of street improvement projects in Boyle Heights that Councilmember Huizar has worked with City departments to champion. Others include $1.6 million in sidewalk replacement along Whittier Blvd.; $5.2 million in streetscape improvements coming to Cesar Chavez Avenue; $850,000 in crosswalk safety upgrades coming to Olympic Boulevard; $10 million in Active Transportation Program (ATP) funds to install a traffic light on 4th Street and Clarence Street, as well as sidewalks, pedestrian lighting, a roundabout and bike lanes to connect to new Sixth Street Bridge PARC; and $5 million in ATP Safe Routes to School funds around Breed St. and Sheridan Street Elementary Schools.
Funding for the Eastside Access Phase II Project is provided through an ATP grant submitted to the state by the Bureau of Street Services. Construction on Eastside Access Phase II is expected to continue through summer 2018.
Upgrades for Eastside Access Project Phase II include:
• Repairing more than 40,000 square feet of broken sidewalks, equivalent to
nearly an acre.
• Upgrading 47 curb ramps.
• Planting (200) 24-inch box size trees, consisting of two evergreens and
two flowering species. This figure exceeds the City’s 2:1 replacement goal. The
California-friendly trees are also infrastructure- and utility-friendly.
• Installing seven new bus benches.
• Installing safety lighting for 17 bus stops.
• Creating curb extensions at three key locations to shorten crossing distances for safer pedestrian crossings at:
o Boyle & Pleasant
o Boyle & 3rd
o State & New Jersey
• Upgrades to 53 driveway approaches and 10 alleyway approaches to provide required pedestrian access route.
• providing 38 legs of high visibility crosswalks
• Light poles, tree species, and benches were all chosen through by local residents and stakeholders through a community survey.