Return to ERHA homepage
Pasadena Metro Blue Line Construction Authority

Official Site

  Senate Bill 1847 (Chapter 1021) creates the Pasadena Metro Blue Line Construction Authority to take over the project from the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. The new entity, governed by a five-member board with one representative from each of the cities of Los Angeles, Pasadena, South Pasadena; from the MTA and from the San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments, will award and oversee all design and construction contracts for completion of the 13.6-mile, above-ground light rail line between downtown Los Angeles and east Pasadena. The law creating the authority took effect on January 1, 1999.

  "At last, we've gotten the Pasadena Blue Line back on track and are headed toward building it faster, cheaper and better," said Senator Schiff, (D-Burbank). "The Blue Line, once built, will benefit the San Gabriel Valley for generations to come by easing traffic congestion, stimulating economic development and helping to keep our air clean. This is a great and historic day for the future of the region."

  Under Senate Bill 1847, only those funds already programmed by the MTA for the Pasadena Blue Line, $270 million in state funds and $88.5 million in local funds, would be shifted to the construction authority.

  Transferring the Pasadena Blue Line project to a low-overhead construction authority is purported to save $106 million in project costs. To close a remaining shortfall of approximately $123 million, the construction authority has explored raising additional funds from such sources as private-public development agreements and issuing bonds backed by future parking and fiber-optic cable revenues.

  Another Schiff bill, SB 567, signed into law requires the infusion, starting January 1, 1999, of needed transportation funds to the state Transportation Finance Bank, an infrastructure financing authority created by Caltrans in 1996 under a federal pilot program.

  The state bank will guarantee the debt issued by local transportation authorities, such as the Pasadena Construction Authority, against anticipated revenues, substantially reducing their capital costs. Senator Schiff plans to work with the supporters of the banking law, the state Business, Transportation and Housing Agency and the California Transportation Commission, to devise a proposal for the transportation bank to provide credit guarantees to help close the funding gap for the Blue Line.

Return to ERHA homepage