At its Meeting today, the Metro board approved environmental studies for the Link US Union Station run-through tracks project. Link US will improve the overall efficiency of Union Station, especially for Metrolink, Amtrak, and planned California High-Speed Rail. The final design, as detailed in this earlier SBLA post, includes an expanded central concourse hallway and eliminated loop tracks. These modifications reduced project costs while prioritizing rider convenience while transferring between trains.
Mostly due to time constraints, Link US approvals sailed through both committee and full board unanimously with no presentations or discussions. The board action officially certified the Link US Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR).
The overall Link US project is estimated to cost roughly $2.3 billion. Metro already has $950 million to fund the initial Link US phase, essentially just building a new elevated track structure over the 101 Freeway. An unfunded second phase – costing nearly $2 billion – would make extensive changes to Union Station itself, including widening the concourse hallway, raising the platforms, expanding the northern “throat tracks,” etc.