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California High-Speed Rail Project Section Nets Award from ACEC California

Dec 16, 2022
California High-Speed Rail Rendering

STV’s role in preparing the Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS) for the 14-mile Burbank to Los Angeles project section of the California High-Speed Rail system has received a Commendation Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies California’s (ACEC California) Engineering Excellence Awards (EEA).

The project team, which was led by Tyler Bonstead, P.E., AICP, vice president, alongside our client, the California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority), will be honored by ACEC California at its annual awards banquet in February.

California’s High-Speed Rail program will more effectively connect San Francisco to the Los Angeles Basin with high-speed train service capable of reaching speeds of 200 miles per hour. STV was contracted by the Authority to oversee planning, preliminary engineering and a suite of other services, including the preparation of the EIR/EIS for the Burbank to Los Angeles project section. This key segment traverses one of the nation’s most congested regions and connects two multi-modal transportation hubs: the Hollywood Burbank Airport and Union Station in Los Angeles, one of the busiest rail hubs on the West Coast.

The EIR/EIS, which was published in late 2021 and approved by the Authority’s board in January 2022, examines the constraints of operating the proposed service within the corridor while also developing design criteria that balances engineering efficiency with environmental and social impacts. STV worked closely with the Authority, and other stakeholders, including transit agencies with jurisdiction within the project area, to identify and propose alternatives that would minimize any adverse impacts of the high-speed rail segment’s construction and ultimately its operations. The team took extra care to ensure the extensive program avoided any environmental justice impacts and developed an inclusive communications outreach program for residents.

Additionally, when the start of the public outreach period was significantly impacted by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Spring of 2020, STV partnered with the Authority to create standards and criteria for equitably collecting public comments during a period of great uncertainty.

When complete, the California High-Speed Rail program strives to eliminate more than 400,000 automobiles from California’s roadways, while also removing millions of tons of greenhouse gas emissions. Within this project section, the new Burbank Airport Station will mark the nation’s first high-speed direct rail to airport connection. In the Los Angeles Basin area, transit access will be improved for all residents, including disadvantaged communities. 

Click here for a full list of EEA winners.