The U.S. government announced a $20 million federal RAISE (Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity) grant to the port of Los Angeles on September 7th. The grant has been awarded to resolve a trucking bottleneck by constructing a rail-roadway grade separation and by improving trucking access to the state highway system.
A grade separation is a junction of two or more routes that are separated by height so that the flow of traffic in one does not impede flow in the other. There is an 80-acre marine storage facility (MSF) on Terminal island which caters to the storage needs of all the ports in the Pedro Bay complex. However, access to the MSF is severely limited for truckers as the heavily used railway tracks loop around the complex, and the sole access to the facility gets hampered by a low clearance tunnel. Currently, truckers have to travel a circuitous route to get to the MSF. In addition to this, while in the tunnel truckers can only travel at about 5mph to prevent accidents.
The awarded project involves the construction of a 4-lane rail-roadway grade separation. This will allow trucks much better access to the marine storage facility. The project will also connect the trucks directly to the state highways in two directions. The completion of this project will save 2500 truck-hours worth of delay per day. It will also reduce emissions by preventing the idling of engines in the tunnel and reducing the longer travel route by 1200 truck miles per day. The project will begin in the coming 15 to 18 months and will generate 300 new jobs.