Metro's got a transformative, long-range plan for Downtown LA's Union Station in the works, and the first phase of that collection of overhauls just got a $12.3-million boost from state grants that will help make it a biker- and pedestrian-friendly reality. KPCC reports that the money will go toward a makeover of the "entrance" area of Union Station, introducing more spacious sidewalks, "a bike hub," and better street-crossing spots on Alameda Street. The makeover will also include a new pedestrian plaza on the site of a parking lot.
These improvements out in front of the station were billed in an earlier rundown of the Union Station Master Plan as an attempt to "soften the edges of the station" and make it more welcoming to pedestrians and people on bikes. "The vision is really about connecting with the surrounding environment. Union Station can really feel like a moat that is very disconnected from the environment," a Metro planner tells KPCC. The project is now in the environmental review process; construction could start next spring at the soonest.
The Union Station Master Plan includes many more changes for the historic transit hub, including a relocation of the Patsaouras Bus Plazato make room for a high-speed rail stop, and the addition of terraces and open spaces to help travelers better orient themselves in and around the station. Metro's making progress on other parts of the plan too: their Board of Directors voted last week to approve $15 million for an environmental review and early-stage engineering for a project that would build new tracks on the south of the station, so that trains could enter from both sides (as opposed to just the north side) to accommodate a possible future bullet train.
· Union Station to get bike, pedestrian improvements with state grant [SCPR]
· Here's the Possible New Look For a Reimagined Union Station [Curbed LA]