May 18, 2024 The Best Source of News, Culture, Lifestyle for Culver City, Mar Vista, Del Rey, Palms and West Los Angeles

Metro to close Crenshaw Boulevard for 30 days to excavate box for Crenshaw/Expo underground station

A rendering of the Crenshaw construction site.
A rendering of the Crenshaw construction site.

Metro and Walsh/Shea Corridor Contractors tonight will close Crenshaw Boulevard, between Jefferson Boulevard and Coliseum Street, for 30 days to begin excavation of Crenshaw/Expo underground station for the Crenshaw/LAX light rail line.

Metro encourages residents, commuters, business owners and shoppers to plan ahead to avoid delays.

“Because we planned ahead, Carmageddon never happened on the 405, so let’s plan ahead on Crenshaw. This is a critical step to delivering an infrastructure investment to build a stronger South L.A. and a stronger regional transportation network for us all,” said Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Eric Garcetti.

Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said, “We can’t forget about our local businesses when they most need us.”

“Throughout construction, we encourage you to eat in our local restaurants, shop in our local stores, and play in our local entertainment venues along the corridor,” Ridley-Thomas said. “Building a state of the art transportation line is no small or easy feat. We know we are asking a lot of residents, businesses and commuters, and we appreciate everyone’s patience throughout this process.”

The excavation and concrete decking work for the first of three underground stations is a critical milestone for the project for its importance and complexity as this will be the location where the tunnel boring machine will be lowered to begin boring one of two 1.09-mile tunnels that will connect with the other two underground stations at Crenshaw/MLK and Crenshaw/Vernon.

“The good news is it’s temporary and Metro is working hard to get the word out and also is taking steps to help small merchants survive from opening a Business Solution Center to give hands on help to merchants to offering financial assistance to those who qualify to encouraging Crenshaw residents and others to Eat, Shop and Play Local,” said Metro Board member Jacquelyn Dupont-Walker.

After excavation work and the placing of concrete decks, traffic on Crenshaw Boulevard will be back to normal while Metro and the contractor continue work on the station under the street surface. At that point traffic impacts for commuters will be minimal throughout the remainder of construction for the station.

Work will begin at 9 p.m. Friday, Nov. 7, through 6 a.m. Monday, Nov. 24, when work is scheduled to stop for one week during the Thanksgiving holiday. Crenshaw Boulevard will re-open to traffic that week. Work will resume on Monday, Dec. 1, through Sunday, Dec, 14. A total of 120 workers will participate in the round-the-clock construction process with 60 construction workers employed in two 12-hour shifts.

Metro has been working very closely with the Los Angeles Department of Transportation to make the detour very easy to navigate on side streets to reach businesses and residences around the excavation area. Traffic control measures and signage will be implemented throughout the closure area.

Twenty-six traffic control officers will be deployed at critical intersections to safely manage traffic conditions along the detour and alternate routes.

Emergency and pedestrian access will be maintained and the 29 businesses in the area can be accessed via Rodeo Road, Rodeo Place and Coliseum Street. Dust and noise levels will be monitored 24-hours.

Detours during the 30-day closure will be as follows:

Southbound:

If traveling southbound on Crenshaw Boulevard, turn right at Jefferson Boulevard, turn left at La Brea, turn left at Rodeo Road, turn right at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, and turn right at Crenshaw Boulevard.

Northbound:

If traveling northbound on Crenshaw Boulevard turn right at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, turn left at Western Avenue, turn left at Jefferson Boulevard, and turn right Crenshaw Boulevard.

Plan ahead if you are traveling in this area, as it is a major thoroughfare to West Los Angeles Church of God in Christ and Baldwin Hills Crenshaw plaza, as well as many other establishments along the corridor.

Bus service:

Metro bus lines 210, 710 and 740 will be temporarily rerouted during the 30-day closure via Arlington Avenue, between Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Jefferson Boulevard. However, Metro will have a special bus shuttle to serve the Expo/Crenshaw rail station for passengers transferring from and to bus and rail. The service will be free and will run approximately every 15 minutes during the hours that the Metro Expo Line is in service. Notices and signs are posted at affected bus stops, rail stations and shuttle stops.

Excavation and decking operation

The area to be excavated will be 800 feet long by 60 to 100 feet wide and approximately 12-feet deep for the decking phase and 60 feet when the station box is completed. Approximately 160,000 cubic yards of soil will be removed during the excavation. The soil to be removed will be transported to an approved facility in the area. The work force will include iron workers/welders, laborers, operators, carpenters, mechanics, surveyors and truck drivers.

In order to excavate the box, the contractor did a lot of preparation such as utility relocation and installed steel piles to build the perimeter walls. A total of 350 steel piles reinforce the underground wall perimeter of what will be the Crenshaw/Expo station. This station is expected to be completed by 2018. The same process will be implemented for the other two underground stations.

Steel deck beams and around 1,200 precast concrete deck mats will be installed as the excavation progresses. Once the deck installation is completed, traffic striping will take place on the new temporary deck along with asphalt ramps at the north and south end driveway and street intersections. After this, Crenshaw Boulevard will be ready to open to the public. Excavation and utility work will continue beneath the newly installed deck with little to no impact to traffic.

The 8.5-mile Crenshaw/LAX Line is a $2.058 billion light-rail line that will connect the Green Line and the Expo Line. It will have eight new stations. It is expected to open in 2019.

For more information on the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project go to metro.net/Crenshaw or join us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/CrenshawRail and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/crenshawrail or call the project hotline (213) 922-2736.

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