Thursday’s Metro Board Meeting: Crenshaw, Bike Share, High Speed Rail and More…


Minneapolis is expanding its successful bike share program. Metro should take notes.


Scrolling through this week’s Metro Board of Directors meeting, the schedule looks to be overly crowded with a lot of big decisions and with plenty of opportunities for surprises and drama.  Here are the highlights.

Metro staff and Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas’ office must have reached some sort of agreement over the proposal to move some Proposition A funds and some Measure R funds from Red Line acceleration to construct light rail yards.  Despite some heat from the Supervisor’s office, the item appears on the consent agenda.  Meanwhile, instead of a vote on a community benefits package for the Crenshaw Corridor, Metro staff will present their response to Ridley Thomas’ motion.  I’ve been told by Metro that the response they presented in committee will be updated for Thursday.

As Senator Alan Lowenthal’s legislation requiring a 3-foot berth before a car passes a bicycle in many situations it has become a partisan issue.  Democrats vote for it.  Republicans vote against it.  Metro staff is recomending that the Board support the legislation as it heads towards its final vote.  It will be interesting to see if the partisan split in Sacramento holds up in the Metro Board Room.

Last week during his Q and A with Streetsblog readers, Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky announced a motion that requires Metro staff to look in to a bike share program at many Metro stations.  The motion doesn’t appear on the consent calendar, but passed committee on a 5-0 vote and is co-sponsored by Mayor Villaraigosa and Santa Monica City Council Woman Pam O’Connor.  You can read the full motion, here.

A much-hyped motion to create a mandatory green construction program for Metro projects should clear its last hurdle after a final vote on Thursday.  Both local groups, such as the East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice, and national groups such as the Natural Resources Defense Council, have lined up support for the motion, and neither labor groups or construction groups are raising objections.  You can read all the details, here.

Buses and High Speed Rail, after the jump!

Mayor Villaraigosa has authored a motion of his own that freezes any bus service cuts for the next year, requires better reporting on bus issues such as cleanliness and on-time performance, and demands better updates on how implementation of the TAP card system is progressing.

I’ll admit that I’m far from an expert on the controversy surrounding the route selection for the High Speed Rail project.  However, Supervisor Mike Antonovich wants the Metro Board to take a position in support of a route through Palmdale and the construction of a Palmdale Station.  Antonovich represents Palmdale.

As always, we’ll be live tweeting the meeting for those that can’t make it to the Board Room themselves Thursday morning.  A full report will come later Thursday afternoon.