Environmental Impact Statement for the Link Union Station Project, Los Angeles, CA, 34429-34431 [2016-12813]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 104 / Tuesday, May 31, 2016 / Notices sradovich on DSK3TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES extension is based on requests from potential eligible entities for additional time to prepare and submit applications. DATES: The period for submitting applications to the Notice of Funding Opportunity for the Advanced Transportation and Congestion Management Technologies Deployment (ATCMTD) program published on March 29, 2016 (81 FR 17536), is extended. Applications must be submitted by 3 p.m. ET, on June 24, 2016. Applications must be submitted through http://www.grants.gov. ADDRESSES: Applications must be submitted through www.grants.gov. Only applicants who comply with all submission requirements described in this notice and submit applications through www.grants.gov will be eligible for award. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For further information concerning this notice, please contact the FHWA via email at ATCMTD@dot.gov. For questions about the ATCMTD program, contact Mr. Robert Arnold, Director, FHWA Office of Transportation Management, telephone 202–366–1285 or via email at Robert.Arnold@dot.gov; or Mr. Egan Smith, Managing Director, Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Joint Program Office, telephone 202– 366–9224 or via email at Egan.Smith@ dot.gov. For legal questions, please contact Mr. Adam Sleeter, AttorneyAdvisor, FHWA Office of the Chief Counsel, telephone 202–366–8839 or via email at Adam.Sleeter@dot.gov. Business hours for FHWA are from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. A telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) is available at 202–366–3993. Additionally, the NOFO, answers to questions, requests for clarification, and information about Webinars for further guidance will be posted at http:// www.grants.gov/. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Electronic Access An electronic copy of this document may be downloaded from the Federal Register Web site at: http:// www.federalregister.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On March 29, 2016, at 81 FR 17536, FHWA published in the Federal Register a NOFO soliciting applications for the ATCMTD program for fiscal year 2016 from eligible entities to develop model deployment sites for large scale installation and operation of advanced transportation technologies to improve safety, efficiency, system performance, and infrastructure return on investment. More information about the ATCMTD VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:07 May 27, 2016 Jkt 238001 program, including this notice, amendments to the NOFO, and frequently asked questions, is available at http://www.grants.gov/ under funding opportunity number DTFH6116RA00012. The original date for submitting applications was June 3, 2016. A number of eligible entities requested additional time to develop and prepare applications for the ATCMTD program. The FHWA recognizes that potential applicants may need additional time to fully prepare applications, therefore, the date for submitting applications for the ATCMTD program is changed from June 3, 2016, to June 24, 2016. Authority: 23 U.S.C. 503(c)(4). Issued on: May 23, 2016. Gregory G. Nadeau, Administrator, Federal Highway Administration. [FR Doc. 2016–12785 Filed 5–27–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–22–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Railroad Administration Environmental Impact Statement for the Link Union Station Project, Los Angeles, CA Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), U. S. Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). AGENCY: Through this NOI, FRA announces it will prepare an EIS and Environmental Impact Report (EIR) jointly with the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) for the Link Union Station Project (Link US Project). FRA and Metro will develop the EIS/EIR in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq., and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). FRA invites the public and Federal, state, and local agencies to provide input into the scope of the EIS and will consider all information developed during outreach activities when preparing the EIS/EIR. DATES: Persons interested in providing written comments on the scope of the Link US Project must do so by June 30, 2016. A Public scoping meeting is scheduled on Thursday, June 2, 2016. ADDRESSES: Interested persons should send written comments to FRA’s Office of Program Delivery, 1200 New Jersey SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00121 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 34429 Avenue SE., (Mail Stop 20), Washington, DC 20590, or Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Headquarters, One Gateway Plaza (Mail Stop 99–13–1), Los Angeles, California, 90012, or via email to Mark Dierking, Community Relations Manager, at dierkingm@metro.net. Comments should include ‘‘Link Union Station—NOI Scoping Comments’’ in the subject line. Interested persons may also provide comments orally or in writing at the scoping meeting. FRA and Metro will hold the scoping meeting between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. at: Metro Headquarters: One Gateway Plaza, Los Angeles, California, 90012. Metro Headquarters is an Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) accessible facility. Spanish and Mandarin translation will be provided. You may call 213–922–2499 at least 72 hours in advance of the meeting to request other ADA accommodations or translation services. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Stephanie Perez, Environmental Protection Specialist, Office of Program Delivery, Federal Railroad Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., (Mail Stop 20), Washington, DC 20590; Telephone: (202) 493–0388, email: stephanie.perez@dot.gov, or to Mark Dierking, Community Relations Manager, One Gateway Plaza (Mail Stop 99–13–1), Los Angeles, CA 90012; email: dierkingm@metro.net. Scoping materials and information concerning the scoping meeting is available through Metro’s Web site: metro.net/projects/ regionalrail/scrip. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: FRA is an operating administration of DOT and is responsible for overseeing the safety of railroad operations, including the safety of any proposed rail ground transportation system. FRA is also authorized to provide, subject to appropriations, funding for intercity passenger and rail capital investments and to provide loans and other financial support for railroad investment. FRA may provide funding or financing for the Link US Project in the future. FRA is the lead agency under NEPA. Metro will be the joint lead agency under NEPA and the lead state agency under CEQA. FRA and Metro will prepare the EIS/EIR consistent with NEPA, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations implementing NEPA in 40 CFR parts 1500–1508, and FRA’s Procedures for Considering Environmental Impacts in 64 FR 28545, dated May 26, 1999 (Environmental Procedures). FRA and Metro will E:\FR\FM\31MYN1.SGM 31MYN1 34430 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 104 / Tuesday, May 31, 2016 / Notices Project Location Project Background sradovich on DSK3TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES prepare the EIS consistent with 23 U.S.C. 139 (titled ‘‘Efficient environmental reviews for project decisionmaking’’). FRA and Metro will also prepare the EIS/EIR consistent with CEQA. The EIS will also document FRA’s compliance with other applicable Federal, state, and local laws including, Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (54 U.S.C. 306108), Section 4(f) of the U.S. Department of Transportation Act of 1966 (49 U.S.C. 303(c)), Section 309(a) of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7609(a)), and Executive Order 12898 and U.S. DOT Order 5610.2(a) on Environmental Justice. Project Need The Link US Project would improve operational flexibility and expand capacity at Los Angeles Union Station (LAUS). FRA and Caltrans first studied potential capacity improvements in a 2002 EIS/EIR known as the RunThrough Tracks Project. In 2005, FRA issued a Final EIS and Caltrans certified the Final EIR for the Run-Through Tracks Project. Since 2005, Metro identified new components and changes to the local and regional operational and capacity requirements at LAUS. The following new components and changed circumstances now need to be studied in the Link US Project EIS/EIR: • Coordinated activities between Metro and the California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) to facilitate the planned High Speed Rail (HSR) system; • A new passenger concourse as a component of the LAUS Master Plan (LAUSMP). The passenger concourse will include new vertical circulation elements (stairs, escalators, and elevators) and up to 600,000 square feet dedicated for passenger circulation and waiting areas, passenger support functions and amenities (up to 100,000 square feet), and building functional support areas to meet the demands of a multi-modal transit station; • Integration of run-through tracks on an elevated rail yard to accommodate the new passenger concourse, consistent with the LAUSMP; • Incorporation of a single loop track; • Compatibility with other planned or completed Metro and public projects; • Property ownership and valuation changes; and • Land use changes since 2005 within the study area. FRA and Metro will prepare the Link US Project EIS/EIR to analyze these new components and address the changed circumstances. LAUS is a stub-ended terminal station dating from 1939 that is the central hub for regional transportation in Southern California. Metro operates multiple modes of transit including bus, subway (Red and Purple Lines), and light rail transit (Gold Line) at LAUS. Metrolink (the commuter rail operator governed by the Southern California Regional Rail Authority (SCRRA)) and Amtrak are responsible for operating commuter and intercity rail services, respectively, and maintaining a safe and reliable level of service on existing rail lines, including the Los Angeles-San Diego-San Luis Obispo railroad corridor (primarily commuter ridership). CHSRA is responsible for construction and operation of a statewide HSR system in California. FRA and CHSRA are preparing NEPA/CEQA documents for the Burbank to Los Angeles and Los Angeles to Anaheim sections of the HSR System both of which include a common station at LAUS, including consideration of an at-grade concept. However, LAUS’s operational functionality is becoming increasingly limited due to a forecasted increase in ridership on multiple transit and rail lines and the potential for new passenger rail and HSR service in the future. Between 2000 and 2014, the population in the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) region increased by 2 million people (approximately 12.3 percent increase). By 2040, employment and population growth within the SCAG region is forecasted to increase by 16 percent. According to a 2015Metro Transforming LAUS Summary Report about LAUS, there are approximately 110,000 passenger trips travelling through LAUS each weekday. Metro anticipates continued increases in population and employment will nearly double the demand on existing and planned modes VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:07 May 27, 2016 Jkt 238001 LAUS is located at 800 North Alameda Street, City of Los Angeles, California 90012. LAUS is generally bounded by U.S. Highway 101 (U.S. 101) to the south, Alameda Street to the west, Cesar E. Chavez Avenue to the north, and Vignes Street to the east and is located in an urban setting, northeast of downtown Los Angeles and west of the Los Angeles River. The Link US Project limits within the railroad corridor extend from Control Point (CP) Chavez in the north (near North Main Street) to CP Olympic in the south (near the Interstate 10/State Route 60/U.S. 101 interchange). PO 00000 Frm 00122 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 of transportation; resulting in over 200,000 passenger trips through LAUS each weekday by 2040. By 2030, Metrolink and Amtrak anticipate they will need to nearly double the number of overall train operations to provide additional commuter and intercity passenger service throughout the region. This includes an increase in ‘‘through’’ trains between Los Angeles and San Diego making all stops; an increase in commuter and intercity passenger service to Ventura and Santa Barbara counties; intercity passenger service to San Luis Obispo; and the addition of a ‘‘through’’ intercity passenger service to San Francisco (California State Rail Plan, Caltrans 2013). In addition, Metro is working with the CHSRA to facilitate the planned HSR system at LAUS. FRA and Metro have identified Link US Project as a critical transportation project to respond to the forecasted ridership increases in the region. Link US Project also represents a critical first step in the implementation of regional transportation solutions identified in the following SCAG planning documents: • Federally Approved Transportation Improvement Program, (2015); • Regional Comprehensive Plan and Guide (2008); and • Regional Transportation Plan and Sustainable Communities Strategy (2016). Project Purpose and Objectives Due to the forecasted increase in ridership on existing transit and rail modes combined with the potential for new passenger rail and HSR service in the future, the overall purpose of the Link US Project is to improve the functionality and operational capacity of LAUS in a cost-effective manner while maintaining existing transit/rail operations during construction. Metro is also working with the CHSRA to facilitate the planned HSR system at LAUS within the limits of the Link US Project. The purpose of the Link US Project is to improve mobility, travel times, and safety in the following ways: • Improve operational efficiencies and scheduling reliability for trains using LAUS by reducing the train movement constraints that results from ‘‘stub-end’’ operation by constructing new ‘‘run-through’’ tracks and an operational loop; • Improve pedestrian access to, and functionality of, the passenger platforms while also improving connectivity with other transit serving amenities (retail, food service, and waiting areas) by expanding the passenger concourse; E:\FR\FM\31MYN1.SGM 31MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 104 / Tuesday, May 31, 2016 / Notices sradovich on DSK3TPTVN1PROD with NOTICES • Increase the operational capacity of LAUS by over 40 percent to accommodate planned growth of Metrolink and Amtrak train services, and potential HSR service, while not precluding other planned improvements at LAUS by developing an expanded passenger concourse located below the elevated platforms; • Preserve space and connections for future rail and transit options, including potential HSR service; • Enhance accessibility to all transit and rail services for passengers with disabilities; • Minimize service disruptions to existing transit service during construction; and • Minimize adverse effects to the environment, including historic properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Link US Project would also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by over 40 percent and thereby meet the air pollution and greenhouse gas emission reduction targets mandated by California Assembly Bill 32, known as the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, as amended, and California Senate Bill 375, known as the California’s Sustainable Communities and Climate Protection Act of 2008. These two laws establish the basis for SCAG and Metro to accommodate regional growth through increased and more frequent access to alternative modes of transit for local communities. functional support areas), including 100,000 square feet of transit serving amenities to meet the demands of a multi-modal transit station. The new passenger concourse would enhance ADA accessibility at LAUS and include new vertical circulation elements (stairs, escalators, and elevators) for passengers between the elevated platforms and the new passenger concourse under the rail yard. • Run-Through Tracks—The Link US Project would include up to 10 runthrough tracks with a new viaduct or viaducts over U.S. 101 that extend runthrough tracks for regional/intercity rail (Metrolink/Amtrak) and potentially HSR south along the west bank of the Los Angeles River, and a separate overhead viaduct for a single loop track turning north to the existing Keller Yard. The Link US Project would also require modifications to existing bridges at city streets to accommodate new elevated tracks; modifications to U.S. 101 and local streets to accommodate the run-through tracks overhead viaducts; railroad signal, Positive Train Control, and communications-related improvements; modifications to the SCRRA West Bank main line tracks; modifications to the existing Keller Yard and BNSF Railway West Bank Yard; modifications to the Amtrak lead track; new access roadways to the railroad right-of-way (ROW); additional ROW; and utility relocations, replacements, and abandonments. Proposed Project Alternatives The Link US Project would transform LAUS from a ‘‘stub-end tracks station’’ into a ‘‘run-through tracks station’’ while increasing operational capacity to meet the demands of the broader rail system. The EIS/EIR will consider the No Action/No Build Alternative and a number of Build Alternatives. Each of the Build Alternatives would result in enhanced operational capacity from CP Chavez in the north (near North Main Street) to CP Olympic in the south (near the Interstate 10/State Route 60/ U.S. 101 interchange). Major project components are described below. • Throat and Elevated Rail Yard— The Link US Project would include new track and subgrade improvements to increase the elevation of the tracks leading to LAUS known as the ‘‘throat’’ and an elevated rail yard including new longer, elevated passenger platforms and canopies. • New Passenger Concourse—The Link US Project would include a new passenger concourse, up to 600,000 square feet (passenger circulation and waiting areas, passenger support functions and amenities, and building Probable Effects The EIS/EIR will consider the potential environmental effects of the Link US Project alternatives in detail. FRA and Metro will analyze the following environmental issue areas in the EIS/EIR: Air Quality and Global Climate Change; Biological and Wetland Resources; Cultural and Historic Resources; Economic and Fiscal Impacts; Energy; Environmental Justice; Floodplains, Hydrology, and Water Quality; Geology, Soils, and Seismicity; Hazardous Waste and Materials; Land Use, Planning, and Communities; Noise and Vibration; Parklands, Community Services, and Other Public Facilities; Safety and Security; Section 4(f) Resources; Transportation; and Visual Quality and Aesthetics. VerDate Sep<11>2014 20:07 May 27, 2016 Jkt 238001 Scoping and Comments FRA encourages broad participation in the EIS process during scoping and review of the resulting environmental documents. FRA invites all interested agencies, Native American Tribes, and the public at large to participate in the scoping process to ensure the EIS/EIR addresses the full range of issues related PO 00000 Frm 00123 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 34431 to the proposed action, reasonable alternatives are addressed, and all significant issues are identified. FRA requests that any public agency having jurisdiction over an aspect of the Link US Project identify the agency’s permit or environmental review requirements and the scope and content of the environmental information germane to the agency’s jurisdiction over the Link US Project. FRA requests that public agencies advise FRA if they anticipate taking a major action in connection with the proposed project and if they wish to cooperate in the preparation of the Link US Project EIS/EIR. FRA will coordinate with participating agencies during development of the Draft EIS under 23 U.S.C. 139. FRA will invite all Federal and non-Federal agencies and Native American Tribes that may have an interest in the Link US Project to become participating agencies for the EIS. If an agency or Tribe is not invited and would like to participate, please contact FRA at the contact information listed above. FRA will develop a Coordination Plan summarizing how it will engage the public, agencies, and Tribes in the process. The Coordination Plan will be posted to the Link US Project Web site metro.net/projects/ regionalrail/scrip and to FRA’s Web site fra.dot.gov. FRA and Metro have scheduled a public scoping meeting as an important component of the scoping process for both the state and Federal environmental review. The scoping meeting described in the ADDRESSES section will also be advertised locally and included in additional public notification. The format of the meeting will consist of a short presentation describing the proposed Link US Project, objectives, and existing conditions. Issued in Washington, DC on May 26, 2016. Jamie Rennert, Director, Office of Program Delivery. [FR Doc. 2016–12813 Filed 5–26–16; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 4910–06–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Transit Administration Fiscal Year 2015 and 2016 Passenger Ferry Grant Program Project Selections Federal Transit Administration. Correction: Passenger Ferry Grant Program Announcement of Project Selections. AGENCY: ACTION: E:\FR\FM\31MYN1.SGM 31MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 104 (Tuesday, May 31, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 34429-34431]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-12813]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Railroad Administration


Environmental Impact Statement for the Link Union Station 
Project, Los Angeles, CA

AGENCY: Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), U. S. Department of 
Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare an Environmental Impact 
Statement (EIS).

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Through this NOI, FRA announces it will prepare an EIS and 
Environmental Impact Report (EIR) jointly with the Los Angeles County 
Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) for the Link Union 
Station Project (Link US Project). FRA and Metro will develop the EIS/
EIR in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 
(NEPA), 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq., and the California Environmental 
Quality Act (CEQA). FRA invites the public and Federal, state, and 
local agencies to provide input into the scope of the EIS and will 
consider all information developed during outreach activities when 
preparing the EIS/EIR.

DATES: Persons interested in providing written comments on the scope of 
the Link US Project must do so by June 30, 2016.
    A Public scoping meeting is scheduled on Thursday, June 2, 2016.

ADDRESSES:  Interested persons should send written comments to FRA's 
Office of Program Delivery, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., (Mail Stop 20), 
Washington, DC 20590, or Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation 
Authority (Metro) Headquarters, One Gateway Plaza (Mail Stop 99-13-1), 
Los Angeles, California, 90012, or via email to Mark Dierking, 
Community Relations Manager, at dierkingm@metro.net. Comments should 
include ``Link Union Station--NOI Scoping Comments'' in the subject 
line.
    Interested persons may also provide comments orally or in writing 
at the scoping meeting. FRA and Metro will hold the scoping meeting 
between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. at: Metro Headquarters: One Gateway 
Plaza, Los Angeles, California, 90012. Metro Headquarters is an 
Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) accessible facility. 
Spanish and Mandarin translation will be provided. You may call 213-
922-2499 at least 72 hours in advance of the meeting to request other 
ADA accommodations or translation services.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Stephanie Perez, Environmental 
Protection Specialist, Office of Program Delivery, Federal Railroad 
Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., (Mail Stop 20), Washington, 
DC 20590; Telephone: (202) 493-0388, email: stephanie.perez@dot.gov, or 
to Mark Dierking, Community Relations Manager, One Gateway Plaza (Mail 
Stop 99-13-1), Los Angeles, CA 90012; email: dierkingm@metro.net. 
Scoping materials and information concerning the scoping meeting is 
available through Metro's Web site: metro.net/projects/regionalrail/scrip.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: FRA is an operating administration of DOT 
and is responsible for overseeing the safety of railroad operations, 
including the safety of any proposed rail ground transportation system. 
FRA is also authorized to provide, subject to appropriations, funding 
for intercity passenger and rail capital investments and to provide 
loans and other financial support for railroad investment. FRA may 
provide funding or financing for the Link US Project in the future.
    FRA is the lead agency under NEPA. Metro will be the joint lead 
agency under NEPA and the lead state agency under CEQA. FRA and Metro 
will prepare the EIS/EIR consistent with NEPA, the Council on 
Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations implementing NEPA in 40 CFR 
parts 1500-1508, and FRA's Procedures for Considering Environmental 
Impacts in 64 FR 28545, dated May 26, 1999 (Environmental Procedures). 
FRA and Metro will

[[Page 34430]]

prepare the EIS consistent with 23 U.S.C. 139 (titled ``Efficient 
environmental reviews for project decisionmaking''). FRA and Metro will 
also prepare the EIS/EIR consistent with CEQA.
    The EIS will also document FRA's compliance with other applicable 
Federal, state, and local laws including, Section 106 of the National 
Historic Preservation Act (54 U.S.C. 306108), Section 4(f) of the U.S. 
Department of Transportation Act of 1966 (49 U.S.C. 303(c)), Section 
309(a) of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7609(a)), and Executive Order 
12898 and U.S. DOT Order 5610.2(a) on Environmental Justice.

Project Background

    The Link US Project would improve operational flexibility and 
expand capacity at Los Angeles Union Station (LAUS). FRA and Caltrans 
first studied potential capacity improvements in a 2002 EIS/EIR known 
as the Run-Through Tracks Project. In 2005, FRA issued a Final EIS and 
Caltrans certified the Final EIR for the Run-Through Tracks Project. 
Since 2005, Metro identified new components and changes to the local 
and regional operational and capacity requirements at LAUS. The 
following new components and changed circumstances now need to be 
studied in the Link US Project EIS/EIR:
     Coordinated activities between Metro and the California 
High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA) to facilitate the planned High Speed 
Rail (HSR) system;
     A new passenger concourse as a component of the LAUS 
Master Plan (LAUSMP). The passenger concourse will include new vertical 
circulation elements (stairs, escalators, and elevators) and up to 
600,000 square feet dedicated for passenger circulation and waiting 
areas, passenger support functions and amenities (up to 100,000 square 
feet), and building functional support areas to meet the demands of a 
multi-modal transit station;
     Integration of run-through tracks on an elevated rail yard 
to accommodate the new passenger concourse, consistent with the LAUSMP;
     Incorporation of a single loop track;
     Compatibility with other planned or completed Metro and 
public projects;
     Property ownership and valuation changes; and
     Land use changes since 2005 within the study area.
    FRA and Metro will prepare the Link US Project EIS/EIR to analyze 
these new components and address the changed circumstances.

Project Location

    LAUS is located at 800 North Alameda Street, City of Los Angeles, 
California 90012. LAUS is generally bounded by U.S. Highway 101 (U.S. 
101) to the south, Alameda Street to the west, Cesar E. Chavez Avenue 
to the north, and Vignes Street to the east and is located in an urban 
setting, northeast of downtown Los Angeles and west of the Los Angeles 
River. The Link US Project limits within the railroad corridor extend 
from Control Point (CP) Chavez in the north (near North Main Street) to 
CP Olympic in the south (near the Interstate 10/State Route 60/U.S. 101 
interchange).

Project Need

    LAUS is a stub-ended terminal station dating from 1939 that is the 
central hub for regional transportation in Southern California. Metro 
operates multiple modes of transit including bus, subway (Red and 
Purple Lines), and light rail transit (Gold Line) at LAUS. Metrolink 
(the commuter rail operator governed by the Southern California 
Regional Rail Authority (SCRRA)) and Amtrak are responsible for 
operating commuter and intercity rail services, respectively, and 
maintaining a safe and reliable level of service on existing rail 
lines, including the Los Angeles-San Diego-San Luis Obispo railroad 
corridor (primarily commuter ridership). CHSRA is responsible for 
construction and operation of a statewide HSR system in California. FRA 
and CHSRA are preparing NEPA/CEQA documents for the Burbank to Los 
Angeles and Los Angeles to Anaheim sections of the HSR System both of 
which include a common station at LAUS, including consideration of an 
at-grade concept. However, LAUS's operational functionality is becoming 
increasingly limited due to a forecasted increase in ridership on 
multiple transit and rail lines and the potential for new passenger 
rail and HSR service in the future.
    Between 2000 and 2014, the population in the Southern California 
Association of Governments (SCAG) region increased by 2 million people 
(approximately 12.3 percent increase). By 2040, employment and 
population growth within the SCAG region is forecasted to increase by 
16 percent. According to a 2015Metro Transforming LAUS Summary Report 
about LAUS, there are approximately 110,000 passenger trips travelling 
through LAUS each weekday. Metro anticipates continued increases in 
population and employment will nearly double the demand on existing and 
planned modes of transportation; resulting in over 200,000 passenger 
trips through LAUS each weekday by 2040.
    By 2030, Metrolink and Amtrak anticipate they will need to nearly 
double the number of overall train operations to provide additional 
commuter and intercity passenger service throughout the region. This 
includes an increase in ``through'' trains between Los Angeles and San 
Diego making all stops; an increase in commuter and intercity passenger 
service to Ventura and Santa Barbara counties; intercity passenger 
service to San Luis Obispo; and the addition of a ``through'' intercity 
passenger service to San Francisco (California State Rail Plan, 
Caltrans 2013). In addition, Metro is working with the CHSRA to 
facilitate the planned HSR system at LAUS.
    FRA and Metro have identified Link US Project as a critical 
transportation project to respond to the forecasted ridership increases 
in the region. Link US Project also represents a critical first step in 
the implementation of regional transportation solutions identified in 
the following SCAG planning documents:
     Federally Approved Transportation Improvement Program, 
(2015);
     Regional Comprehensive Plan and Guide (2008); and
     Regional Transportation Plan and Sustainable Communities 
Strategy (2016).

Project Purpose and Objectives

    Due to the forecasted increase in ridership on existing transit and 
rail modes combined with the potential for new passenger rail and HSR 
service in the future, the overall purpose of the Link US Project is to 
improve the functionality and operational capacity of LAUS in a cost-
effective manner while maintaining existing transit/rail operations 
during construction. Metro is also working with the CHSRA to facilitate 
the planned HSR system at LAUS within the limits of the Link US 
Project. The purpose of the Link US Project is to improve mobility, 
travel times, and safety in the following ways:
     Improve operational efficiencies and scheduling 
reliability for trains using LAUS by reducing the train movement 
constraints that results from ``stub-end'' operation by constructing 
new ``run-through'' tracks and an operational loop;
     Improve pedestrian access to, and functionality of, the 
passenger platforms while also improving connectivity with other 
transit serving amenities (retail, food service, and waiting areas) by 
expanding the passenger concourse;

[[Page 34431]]

     Increase the operational capacity of LAUS by over 40 
percent to accommodate planned growth of Metrolink and Amtrak train 
services, and potential HSR service, while not precluding other planned 
improvements at LAUS by developing an expanded passenger concourse 
located below the elevated platforms;
     Preserve space and connections for future rail and transit 
options, including potential HSR service;
     Enhance accessibility to all transit and rail services for 
passengers with disabilities;
     Minimize service disruptions to existing transit service 
during construction; and
     Minimize adverse effects to the environment, including 
historic properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
    The Link US Project would also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 
over 40 percent and thereby meet the air pollution and greenhouse gas 
emission reduction targets mandated by California Assembly Bill 32, 
known as the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, as amended, and 
California Senate Bill 375, known as the California's Sustainable 
Communities and Climate Protection Act of 2008. These two laws 
establish the basis for SCAG and Metro to accommodate regional growth 
through increased and more frequent access to alternative modes of 
transit for local communities.

Proposed Project Alternatives

    The Link US Project would transform LAUS from a ``stub-end tracks 
station'' into a ``run-through tracks station'' while increasing 
operational capacity to meet the demands of the broader rail system. 
The EIS/EIR will consider the No Action/No Build Alternative and a 
number of Build Alternatives.
    Each of the Build Alternatives would result in enhanced operational 
capacity from CP Chavez in the north (near North Main Street) to CP 
Olympic in the south (near the Interstate 10/State Route 60/U.S. 101 
interchange). Major project components are described below.
     Throat and Elevated Rail Yard--The Link US Project would 
include new track and subgrade improvements to increase the elevation 
of the tracks leading to LAUS known as the ``throat'' and an elevated 
rail yard including new longer, elevated passenger platforms and 
canopies.
     New Passenger Concourse--The Link US Project would include 
a new passenger concourse, up to 600,000 square feet (passenger 
circulation and waiting areas, passenger support functions and 
amenities, and building functional support areas), including 100,000 
square feet of transit serving amenities to meet the demands of a 
multi-modal transit station. The new passenger concourse would enhance 
ADA accessibility at LAUS and include new vertical circulation elements 
(stairs, escalators, and elevators) for passengers between the elevated 
platforms and the new passenger concourse under the rail yard.
     Run-Through Tracks--The Link US Project would include up 
to 10 run-through tracks with a new viaduct or viaducts over U.S. 101 
that extend run-through tracks for regional/intercity rail (Metrolink/
Amtrak) and potentially HSR south along the west bank of the Los 
Angeles River, and a separate overhead viaduct for a single loop track 
turning north to the existing Keller Yard.
    The Link US Project would also require modifications to existing 
bridges at city streets to accommodate new elevated tracks; 
modifications to U.S. 101 and local streets to accommodate the run-
through tracks overhead viaducts; railroad signal, Positive Train 
Control, and communications-related improvements; modifications to the 
SCRRA West Bank main line tracks; modifications to the existing Keller 
Yard and BNSF Railway West Bank Yard; modifications to the Amtrak lead 
track; new access roadways to the railroad right-of-way (ROW); 
additional ROW; and utility relocations, replacements, and 
abandonments.

Probable Effects

    The EIS/EIR will consider the potential environmental effects of 
the Link US Project alternatives in detail. FRA and Metro will analyze 
the following environmental issue areas in the EIS/EIR: Air Quality and 
Global Climate Change; Biological and Wetland Resources; Cultural and 
Historic Resources; Economic and Fiscal Impacts; Energy; Environmental 
Justice; Floodplains, Hydrology, and Water Quality; Geology, Soils, and 
Seismicity; Hazardous Waste and Materials; Land Use, Planning, and 
Communities; Noise and Vibration; Parklands, Community Services, and 
Other Public Facilities; Safety and Security; Section 4(f) Resources; 
Transportation; and Visual Quality and Aesthetics.

Scoping and Comments

    FRA encourages broad participation in the EIS process during 
scoping and review of the resulting environmental documents. FRA 
invites all interested agencies, Native American Tribes, and the public 
at large to participate in the scoping process to ensure the EIS/EIR 
addresses the full range of issues related to the proposed action, 
reasonable alternatives are addressed, and all significant issues are 
identified. FRA requests that any public agency having jurisdiction 
over an aspect of the Link US Project identify the agency's permit or 
environmental review requirements and the scope and content of the 
environmental information germane to the agency's jurisdiction over the 
Link US Project. FRA requests that public agencies advise FRA if they 
anticipate taking a major action in connection with the proposed 
project and if they wish to cooperate in the preparation of the Link US 
Project EIS/EIR.
    FRA will coordinate with participating agencies during development 
of the Draft EIS under 23 U.S.C. 139. FRA will invite all Federal and 
non-Federal agencies and Native American Tribes that may have an 
interest in the Link US Project to become participating agencies for 
the EIS. If an agency or Tribe is not invited and would like to 
participate, please contact FRA at the contact information listed 
above. FRA will develop a Coordination Plan summarizing how it will 
engage the public, agencies, and Tribes in the process. The 
Coordination Plan will be posted to the Link US Project Web site 
metro.net/projects/regionalrail/scrip and to FRA's Web site 
fra.dot.gov.
    FRA and Metro have scheduled a public scoping meeting as an 
important component of the scoping process for both the state and 
Federal environmental review. The scoping meeting described in the 
ADDRESSES section will also be advertised locally and included in 
additional public notification. The format of the meeting will consist 
of a short presentation describing the proposed Link US Project, 
objectives, and existing conditions.

    Issued in Washington, DC on May 26, 2016.
Jamie Rennert,
Director, Office of Program Delivery.
[FR Doc. 2016-12813 Filed 5-26-16; 11:15 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-06-P