High Speed Rail Through Alhambra

Did you know that the State of California plans to build a high speed
train railway through the streets of Alhambra, Monterey Park, San
Gabriel, and Rosemead? The proposed railway will be more than three
stories high in the sky and race at more than 100 miles per hour through
our neighborhoods. Homes will be torn down, train noise and vibration
will increase, and property values will be affected.

The goal of this web site is to share information about the high speed rail system, the plans to cut through Alhambra and neighboring cities, and ensure that we are all informed about meetings and when reports are issued. The California High Speed Rail Authority clearly has not done a good job communicating with this or other communities about their plans and we intend to help fill in the wide gaps in knowledge.

What to do:
1) Get the word out. Tell your parents, neighbors, friends, and the
aunties/uncles about these plans.

2) Attend community meetings. Inform yourself and let your voice be heard. A community meeting will be held at Fremont Elementary on Thursday, Aug 12. The California High Speed Rail Authority will give the same presentation it gave at the Alhambra City Council meeting on Monday. The council asked that a board representative be present to hear our concerns directly. The city is encouraging public comments. The city web site has more info: http://www.cityofalhambra.org/community/HSRailProject.html

3) Contact your elected representatives. For Alhambra, they are:
State Senate: Gil Cedillo (213) 612-9566
State Assembly: Mike Eng (626) 450-6116
U.S. House of Representatives: Adam Schiff (626) 304-2727
U.S. Senate: Barbara Boxer (213) 894-5000; Diane Feinstein (310)
914-7300
If you do not live in Alhambra, visit the Secretary of State web site: http://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/elections_r.htm

The route is part of the segment between LA Union Station and San Diego,
through the Inland Empire. There will not be a stop between Union
Station and El Monte. A route along the I-10 between Union Station and
El Monte was not part of the original plans discussed during scoping
meetings that occurred in the community. However, in the past few
months, the Authority has added that alternative route to its plan.

The route through Alhambra has three options:

  1. Option A: provides a 100 mph curve around Fremont. This option requires the Authority evict residents from their homes and demolish all or part of the neighborhood just north of Granada Park.
  2. Option B: provides a 75 mph curve about Fremont. This is the most disruptive option. The railway will be located outside the footprint of the I-10 freeway on either the north or south side on Ramona Rd. This will require many homes to be razed.  It will also affect Fremont Elementary, Ramona Convent, Mark Keppel High School, and Garfield Hospital.
  3. Option C: This route follows only the existing Metrolink right of way. It will not leave the existing footprint of the freeway or directly enter our neighborhoods. However, this option will require the trains slow to 50 mph between Fremont and the 710 freeway, which seems untenable for a high speed rail line. Also, it will take away lanes from the I-10 freeway which may prompt Caltrans to expand the freeway thus indirectly requiring homes to be razed and severe disruptions to our city.

Trains in all three options will be elevated above street level, with an expected height of 35 feet for the platform. That is more than three stories high and well above the current freeway sound wall. All three route options will also seriously interfere with kids from Marguerita School who use the foot bridge to cross from the other side of the freeway, as trains traveling faster than 150 mph will fly by above.

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