Port of Los Angeles Kicks Off Railyard Project

Port of Los Angeles officials, joined by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, broke ground Jan. 16 on a new intermodal storage railyard that will provide staging and storage for trains using the Alameda Corridor.

Construction of the $137.7 million rail project at Berth 200, also known as the West Basin Railyard, will be funded with $16 million in federal grant money from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s TIGER grant program as well as $51.2 million from the California State Proposition 1B Trade Corridors Improvement Fund (TCIF) grant that is administered by Caltrans and $22.1 million from METRO-awarded federal funds. The Port of Los Angeles itself is contributing $48.37 million from its Harbor Revenue funds for the project.

The Berth 200 railyard project also makes possible an on-dock rail facility at the TraPac container terminal, which is undergoing rail, roadway and terminal improvements. The other seven container terminals at the Port of Los Angeles that offer shippers the speed-to-market advantage of on-dock rail.

The project will be built in two phases. Phase I includes construction of the new yard, support tracks for the TraPac and China Shipping/West Basin Container terminals, double-track connections to the Alameda Corridor and national rail network, and access road improvements. Phase II, which is due to begin construction in 2013, includes final rail network connections and vehicle overpasses to eliminate at-grade crossings. Both phases are expected to be completed in summer 2014.

“The West Basin Railyard is a model project for how government is supposed to work,” said Harbor Commission President Cindy Miscikowski in a written statement. “We are pooling federal and state grants with Port revenues to improve a critical link in the nation’s supply chain and support the kind of sustainable solutions we need to meet our most pressing needs.”