LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A ground breaking ceremony was held Tuesday morning for a new light rail line that will serve the Crenshaw corridor, including LAX.

The Metro board of directors approved the $2 billion project last June for the 8.5-mile line that will stretch from the Expo Line station at Crenshaw Boulevard south to the Green Line Aviation/LAX station.

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About 55 percent of the project will be underground with eight stations along the line. Completion is set for 2019 with funding provided through Measure R.

“This area will be economically revitalized due to this rail system and the nature of these types of projects,” Metro’s Charles Beauvoir said.

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Additionally, the new rail line is expected to create more than 18,000 jobs.

The project is being criticized by the Crenshaw Subway Coalition who says the rail line will raise safety issues and hurt black-owned businesses.

“We just believe that this particular corridor, this unique cultural and business asset of the African-American community, there must be the appropriate investment  for the long term development,” Damien Goodman said.

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