Dave Schwab reports in the LaJolla Light that CHSRA has postponed the Sep 29 project-level scoping meeting in University City to the following date and time:
University City, Tue Oct. 13, 3-7pm
Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center
4126 Executive Drive
There will be two additional scoping meetings held in the San Diego area:
San Diego: Wed Oct. 14, 3-7pm
Ramada Limited San Diego Airport
1403 Rosecrans St.
Escondido: Thu Oct. 15, 3-7pm
Escondido Center for the Arts
340 N. Escondido Blvd.
Of particular interest to readers of this blog are the route options that CHSRA is now looking at (cp. our earlier post LA - San Diego: Quo Vadis). In the draft map shown below, the original route is shown in purple.
However, since UPRR doesn't look like it will sell any of its rights of way or air rights above them the San Gabriel Valley, the technical working group (TWG) for the segment headed up by consulting firm SVG has had to look into alternatives. Note that the purple line now includes a section along I-605 and and aerial above Holt Ave, a city street in Pomona.
The TWG has also been looking at several alternative routes. A promising candidate would use hwy 60, hwy 57, I-10 and head south on I-15 via the city of Corona, well west of Riverside UC. In that scenario, the HSR station would apparently end up well south of the hwy 91 interchange and not be intermodal with established Metrolink services. Except for a short section south-west of Pomona where highways 60 and 57 codeshare, these highway medians are still available.
A second alternative would eliminate Metrolink's San Bernadino line to free up a right of way to reach an HSR station there. That city has always lobbied for one, but the sharp curves in the transition up from Ontario Airport would be problematic. The continuation down to Riverside also looks challenging. Note that leveraging SBD isn't even being considered, LAWA has clearly insisted on a station for ONT to relieve LAX, after deciding to shelve plans for PMD. With a good HSR connection, Ontario Airport might also provide limited relief to Lindbergh Field (SAN).
Further south, there is the issue of the I-15 managed lanes project between Escondido and Miramar (already under construction, VIDEO), which is eliminating the wide freeway median CHSRA had hoped to use. However, SANDAG's Linda Culp has been in the loop on HSR planning since 1999. It's not immediately clear if HSR tracks are now supposed to run next to I-15 in this stretch or, on an aerial made possible by extra-tall on/off ramps to the managed lanes.
Note also that I-10 and hwy 57 were originally penciled in for the Las Vegas to Anaheim maglev, but that increasingly looks like it will never be more than a paper tiger. Like it or not, California decided in favor of steel wheels HSR last November. Nevada would be wise to set aside its petty internal squabbles and push for electrified DesertXPress at 220mph plus a connector between the towns of Mojave and Barstow.
In San Diego county, there are apparently a few route details left to be sorted out near Escondido and past/through Miramar, in addition to exact station sites. In particular, the Lindbergh Field vs. Santa Fe Depot downtown question is still unresolved, as is the location of a yard for overnight stabling and minor maintenance.
Keep in mind that there has been and continues to be a great deal of negotiation regarding the route and station placements in the LA to San Diego spur. The situation is still very fluid and the map shown above could already be slightly out of date in some respects. The LA-San Diego spur was included in the statewide program EIS/EIR, but CHSRA has always sought to position it as phase 2 of the entire project. Even so, the fact that this the route and station options are still under discussion underscores that the program-level planning effort did not include actual right of way acquisition.