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Officials: Halt To Expo Line Expansion Could Cost 4,000 Jobs

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WEST LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — City and county officials spoke out on Monday against a group of homeowners who want to stop all construction on the Expo Line project.

KNX 1070’s Jon Baird reports the Expo Construction Authority called on voters to consider the consequences of halting construction of Phase 2 of the light rail line.

Los Angeles County Supervisors Zev Yaroslavsky and Mark Ridley-Thomas, Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom, Culver City Councilman Micheal O’Leary were among those on hand warning voters of the potential impact of a motion filed in California Supreme Court.

Ridley-Thomas warned that ongoing legal efforts by opposition group Neighbors for Smart Rail could cost the region $90 million dollars and as many as 4,000 jobs – a goal his colleague said the group has had from the start.

“What they’ve wanted to do from Day One is kill this project,” said Yaroslavsky.

The Expo Line – which began running trains between Exposition Park and Culver City in June – is expected to host 64,000 riders a day by 2030 along the $930 million railway.

But Terri Tippit, president of Neighbors for Smart Rail, said running 240 trains a day at street level will greatly interfere with traffic and pose a potential threat to nearby schoolkids.

Tippit has proposed lawmakers instead focus their efforts on the “Subway To The Sea”, a project the group believes “has 100 percent community support throughout” and “will make Expo redundant the day it opens.”

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