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Metro CEO says it’ll take a miracle to get an Arts District rail station built

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Not gonna happen “unless manna falls from heaven”

There’s support—but no money—for a new rail station in the Arts District.
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There has been a lot of enthusiasm for another possible rail connection to the Arts District, but until you can pay for a new station with excitement, don’t expect it to happen.

A lack of funding is the biggest hurdle facing the construction of the desired stop, the Downtown News reports.

Metro CEO Phil Washington told luncheon attendees at the Los Angeles Current Affairs Forum that “unless manna falls from heaven,” the AD probably isn’t going to get a second rail stop.

“We don’t argue that a station would be a good idea in the Arts District,” Washington said, according to the News. “The question is, how do you pay for it? Because it’s not in anybody’s budget.”

Metro’s own board of directors commissioned a study on extending the Red and Purple lines to the Arts District, and that study recommended adding a new station—either at Third or Sixth streets—to Metro’s Long Range Transportation Plan.

But a new station (or stations) in the Arts District wasn’t included on the lengthy list of projects funded by Measure M, so financing is going to have to come from somewhere else. (Apparently, heaven.)

Right now, the News says, Metro’s focusing all its efforts on its project to expand its existing turnaround facility in the neighborhood to provide faster train service—every four minutes during rush hour—and more reliable service once the Purple Line’s extension opens in 2024.

The Arts District has a Gold Line station near its northeast border at Alameda and First streets that it shares with Little Tokyo, but there’s no rail connection in the heart of the neighborhood or closer to its southern end, where new, high-profile developments are in the works.