The alternatives analysis for the LAX rail connection is coming to an end, and Metro staff has proposed to advance four alternatives for environmental study. All four alternatives involve peoplemover technology that would connect terminals to the future Crenshaw light rail line (which formally broke ground today), meaning that Metro will no longer consider direct light rail service into the airport. Officials cited the high cost of tunneling under the terminals (as much as $3 billion) and the sheer logistics of building underneath the airport as reasons to discard the light rail options.
Elected officials representing the area are having none of that, however. Congressmember Janice Hahn was critical of the recommendation to eliminate the light rail options, stating that users would prefer to travel to and from the airport directly, without the need of transferring. Los Angeles World Airports Executive Director Gina Marie Lindsey thinks a peoplemover would work just fine. In response, Metro Boardmember Mark Ridley-Thomas submitted a motion that would add two of the discarded light rail options as part of the environmental study. The Metro Board will decide the matter at their upcoming meeting on January 23.