The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) purchased the iconic downtown Los Angeles Union Station in 2011 and shortly thereafter initiated the preparation of the Union Station Master Plan. Gruen Associates was selected as the prime consultant, with Grimshaw Architects as the design lead to prepare the Union Station Master Plan.
The master planning process took place between 2012 and 2014 and was informed by several stakeholder meetings, workshops, and presentations to the Metro Board of Directors. The Master Plan includes three programmatic goals:
- Transit optimization
- Creating a great destination
- Improved connectivity
In 2015, Metro released Transforming Los Angeles Union Station, a Summary Report , a synopsis of the two-year master planning process, including substantial data analysis, stakeholder engagement, key findings, alternatives analysis, final recommendations and an implementation strategy.
Union Station Activities
- (October of 2014) The Metro Board of Directors approved moving the Union Station Master Plan from planning to implementation. Since the Board action, staff has initiated a series of implementation activities including environmental analysis and securing grants to design and implement the recommended perimeter improvements on the western side of Union Station.
- (October of 2015) The Board approved an action that called for the Link Us project (formerly Southern California Regional Interconnector Project) to incorporate the Master Plan multi-modal passenger concourse (under the railyard) in their environmental analysis and for the Link US and Master Plan to accommodate for High Speed Rail at the railyard.
- Metro’s Regional Rail department began the design and engineering work for the Link US project, which is the first major transit improvement planned for Union Station since the completion of the Master Plan. Because of the complexity of the Link US project, as well as Metro’s desire to accommodate High Speed Rail at the Union Station railyard, Metro will not pursue the Programmatic Environmental Impact Report for the Master Plan, but will rather allow the Link US and High Speed Rail projects to pursue individual project level clearances. Metro will pursue environmental clearance and approval of the Master Plan perimeter improvements at the project level through the Metro Board.
- (November 2016) Staff updated the Metro Board on implementation activities and updated approach to redevelopment at Los Angeles Union Station (LAUS).
What’s next for Union Station?
At this time, the following projects are the focus for Union Station redevelopment efforts:
Forecourt and Esplanade Improvements
- Project level environmental clearance is underway for improvements to Alameda Street, Los Angeles Street and the Union Station forecourt. The design will begin, in coordination with the City of Los Angeles, in summer 2017. This project will now be referred to as the Los Angeles Union Station Forecourt and Perimeter Improvements project.
- Formerly known as the Southern California Regional Interconnector Project (SCRIP), the Link US project will address reconfiguration of tracks to enhance capacity of service at Union Station. Preliminary design, engineering and environmental clearance are underway.
The Union Station/Civic Center District Exploratory Taskforce
- Metro, in partnership with the California High Speed Rail Authority, and the County and City of Los Angeles, is creating a taskforce to coordinate on planning and investments around Union Station and the Civic Center. The Committee will engage with stakeholders to identify and pursue broader district goals focused on equitable transit oriented communities.
- The Union Station property management team continues efforts to lease existing spaces to unique retailers, with an emphasis on food retail and restaurants.
- Metro is preparing a Request for Interest and Qualifications (RFIQ) for a Master Commercial Developer for Los Angeles Union Station. An Industry Forum was held on Friday, October 13, 2017.
- An RFIQ is targeted for Winter 2017.