The Los Angeles Metro received the federal funding needed to begin work on a new extension connecting Westwood to Century City.
According to a Century City/Westwood News report, the approval of LA Metro’s request for funding reimbursement will allow the Metro to be selective in competitive bids for the boring of the metro tunnel. The bids were originally set to expire on Oct. 3.
Phil Washington, CEO of Metro, announced Sept. 20 that the Federal Transportation Administration approved the funding request for the third phase of the Purple Line Extension, which will begin construction in 2019. The entire project is now expected to be completed by 2026.
Metro will save about $130 million in costs on the boring of the tunnel because of the funds from the FTA. The funding approval also saves LA $200 million in additional costs to rebid on the tunnel, and an additional two years of construction.
Construction for the second phase of the Purple Line Extension began in 2017 and will connect Beverly Hills and Century City. Construction for phase three of the extension is expected to cost around $1.3 billion.
Metro construction workers began preconstruction for the third phase of the project in April. Once completed, one station will be located at the intersection of Westwood and Wilshire boulevards, and another will be near the Veterans Affairs hospital.
Traffic surrounding UCLA will worsen during the construction of the stations, said David Sotero, a communications manager for LA Metro.
The report also said that the new FTA funds will allow the Purple Line Extension to be opened to the public before the LA 2028 Summer Olympic Games. UCLA and USC are expected to house athletes during the games.