Project Section Environmental Documents

Due to COVID-19 shelter-in-place order, the Burbank to Los Angeles Draft EIR/EIS Open House materials have been moved to the following online platform: www.MeetHSRSoCal.org

BURBANK TO LOS ANGELES PROJECT SECTION
DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT/ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT

The public review period for the Burbank to Los Angeles Project Section Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS) closed on August 31, 2020. The California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) will consider all comments received on the Draft EIR/EIS and respond to substantive comments on the Draft EIR/EIS in the Final EIR/EIS.

The Draft EIR/EIS was originally made available for a minimum 45-day public review beginning on May 29, 2020 and ending on July 16, 2020, pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). In response to agency and stakeholder requests and in consideration of limitations caused by the novel coronavirus pandemic, the Authority elected to extend the public review period for 15 days to July 31, 2020, and then for another 30 days to August 31, 2020.

As to NEPA, the environmental review, consultation, and other actions required by applicable federal environmental laws for this project are being or have been carried out by the State of California pursuant to 23 U.S. Code 327 and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) dated July 23, 2019, and executed by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and the State of California. Under that MOU, the Authority is the project’s lead agency under NEPA. Prior to the July 23, 2019 MOU, the FRA was the federal lead agency.

A Statewide Program (Tier 1) EIR/EIS was completed in 2005 as the first phase of a tiered environmental review process for the proposed California High-Speed Rail (HSR) System planned to provide a reliable high-speed electric-powered rail system that links the major metropolitan areas of the state and that delivers predictable and consistent travel times. A further objective is to provide an interface with commercial airports, mass transit, and the highway network and to relieve capacity constraints of the existing transportation system as intercity travel demand in California increases, in a manner sensitive to and protective of California’s unique natural resources. A second program-level (Tier 1) EIR/EIS was completed in 2008 focusing on the connection between the Bay Area and Central Valley; the Authority revised this document under CEQA and completed it in 2012. Based on the Program EIR/EISs, the Authority selected preferred corridors and station locations to advance for further study.

The Authority has prepared a project-level (Tier 2) EIR/EIS that further examines the Burbank to Los Angeles Project Section. The approximately 14-mile Project Section would provide HSR service between the Burbank Airport Station in Burbank and Los Angeles Union Station in Los Angeles. These HSR stations would provide links with regional and local mass transit services as well as connectivity to airports and the highway networks in the San Fernando Valley and Los Angeles Basin. The Project Section would connect the Northern and Southern portions of the Statewide HSR system.

This Draft EIR/EIS evaluates the impacts and benefits of a No Project Alternative and one Build Alternative. The Authority’s Preferred Alternative under NEPA, which serves as the proposed project for CEQA, is the HSR Build Alternative. The Preferred Alternative includes a new station near the Hollywood Burbank Airport, modifications to Los Angeles Union Station (raising of passenger platforms and installation of overhead catenary system), new electrified tracks within the existing railroad corridor (which would be shared with Metrolink and Amtrak), a tunnel under the Hollywood Burbank Airport (Runway 8-26, Taxiway D, and the proposed extended Taxiway C), and traction power facilities.

Copies of the Draft EIR/EIS

Many of the following documents are available electronically in Adobe Acrobat PDF format, which require Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have a copy of this free software, you can download it from Adobe at https://get.adobe.com/reader/. If you already have a copy of this software, simply click on the links and it will open up automatically. Note: many of these files are very large and could take up to several minutes to download. Electronic copies of files that are not posted on this website can be accessed by calling (877) 977-1660 or by emailing Burbank_Los.Angeles@hsr.ca.gov.

In addition to posting sections of the Draft EIR/EIS on this website, printed and/or electronic copies of the Draft EIR/EIS, and electronic copies of associated technical reports, may be available at the following locations, if circumstances allow, during hours the facilities are open (open days/hours may be reduced for compliance with COVID-19 public health and safety directives).

UPDATE ON 7/13/20: A printed copy of the Draft EIR/EIS is available at Caltrans District 7 Headquarters, 100 S Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90012. The documents will be available in the museum located on the 1st floor of the building. To view the documents, you must check in with security at the front desk by signing in and providing identification to be issued a visitor’s badge.

  • Burbank
    • Buena Vista Branch Library, 300 N Buena Vista Street
    • Northwest Branch Library, 3323 W Victory Boulevard
    • Burbank Central Library, 110 N Glenoaks Boulevard
  • Glendale
    • Grandview Library, 1535 Fifth Street
    • Pacific Park and Community Center, 501 S Pacific Avenue
    • Glendale Central Library, 222 E Harvard Street
  • Los Angeles
    • Atwater Village Branch Library, 3379 Glendale Boulevard
    • Chinatown Branch Library, 639 N Hill Street
    • Cypress Park Branch Library, 1150 Cypress Avenue
    • Lincoln Heights Branch Library, 2530 Workman Street
    • Little Tokyo Branch Library, 203 S Los Angeles Street

Printed and/or electronic copies of the Draft EIR/EIS and electronic copies of associated technical reports are also available for review during business hours at the Authority’s Southern California Regional Office at 355 S Grand Avenue, Suite 2050, Los Angeles, CA and the Authority’s Headquarters at 770 L Street, Suite 620 MS-1, Sacramento, CA.

Electronic copies of the Tier 1 documents are available on request by calling the Authority office at (877) 977-1660. The Tier 1 documents may also be reviewed at the Authority’s offices during business hours at 770 L Street, Suite 620 MS-1, Sacramento, CA 95814 and 355 S Grand Avenue, Suite 2050, Los Angeles, CA.

Authority offices may have reduced open days/hours, as required by COVID-19 public health and safety directives. Please consult www.hsr.ca.gov for up-to-date information.

The Authority does not discriminate on the basis of disability and, upon request, will provide reasonable accommodation to ensure equal access to its programs, services, and activities.

The purpose of environmental documents is to disclose information to decision makers and the public. While the science and analysis that supports this Draft EIR/EIS are complex, this document is intended for the general public. Every attempt has been made to limit technical terms and the use of acronyms. The terms and acronyms are defined the first time they are used and a list of acronyms and abbreviations is provided in Chapter 15 of this document.

The Executive Summary, available in English, Arabic, Armenian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Tagalog, and Vietnamese, provides an overview of the substantive chapters. It includes a table listing the potential environmental impacts for each environmental resource topic and directs the reader to where additional information can be found elsewhere in the document.

Submitting a Comment

The comment period is closed.

Document Organization

The Burbank to Los Angeles Project Section Draft EIR/EIS consists of the following:

  • Volume 1—Report
  • Volume 2—Technical Appendices
  • Volume 3—Preliminary Engineering for Project Definition

Volume 1: Report

Volume 2: Technical Appendices

Technical Reports

The following Burbank to Los Angeles Project Section Technical Reports provide additional technical details and serve as sources for the Draft EIR/EIS analysis. Electronic versions of the associated technical reports will be available at the following locations, if circumstances allow, during hours the facilities are open (open days/hours may be reduced for compliance with coronavirus public health and safety directives):

  • Burbank
    • Buena Vista Branch Library, 300 N Buena Vista Street
    • Northwest Branch Library, 3323 W Victory Boulevard
    • Burbank Central Library, 110 N Glenoaks Boulevard
  • Glendale
    • Grandview Library, 1535 Fifth Street
    • Pacific Park and Community Center, 501 S Pacific Avenue
    • Glendale Central Library, 222 E Harvard Street
  • Los Angeles
    • Atwater Village Branch Library, 3379 Glendale Boulevard
    • Chinatown Branch Library, 639 N Hill Street
    • Cypress Park Branch Library, 1150 Cypress Avenue
    • Lincoln Heights Branch Library, 2530 Workman Street
    • Little Tokyo Branch Library, 203 S Los Angeles Street

Electronic copies of the technical reports are also available for review during business hours at the Authority’s Southern California Regional Office at 355 S Grand Avenue, Suite 2050, Los Angeles, CA and the Authority’s Headquarters at 770 L Street, Suite 620 MS-1, Sacramento, CA. Authority offices may have reduced open days/hours, as required by COVID-19 public health and safety directives. Please consult www.hsr.ca.gov for up-to-date information.

Electronic copies of the technical reports are also available on request by calling the Authority office at (877) 977-1660.

  • Transportation Technical Report
  • Air Quality and Global Climate Change Technical Report
  • Noise and Vibration Technical Report
  • Biological and Aquatic Resources Technical Report
  • Aquatic Resources Delineation Report
  • Aquatic Resources Impact Memorandum
  • Hydrology and Water Resources Technical Report
  • Geology, Soils, and Seismicity Technical Report
  • Paleontological Resources Technical Report
  • Hazardous Materials and Wastes Technical Report
  • Community Impact Assessment
  • Draft Relocation Impact Report
  • Aesthetics and Visual Quality Technical Report
  • Historic Architectural Survey Report

Brief Explanation of Each Chapter

Volume 1 – Report

Chapter 1.0, Introduction and Purpose, Need, and Objectives, explains the Authority’s purpose and need for the Burbank to Los Angeles Project Section, and provides a history of the planning process.

Chapter 2.0, Alternatives, describes the proposed Burbank to Los Angeles Build Alternative and the No Project Alternative used for purposes of comparison. It contains illustrations and maps and provides a review of construction activities. This chapter identifies the preferred alternative, which also serves as the proposed project for CEQA.

These first two chapters help the reader understand what is being analyzed in the remainder of the document.

Chapter 3.0, Affected Environment, Environmental Consequences, and Mitigation Measures, is where the reader can find information about the existing transportation, environmental, and social conditions in the area of Burbank to Los Angeles. This chapter provides the findings of the analysis of potential environmental impacts, along with methods to reduce these impacts (called mitigation measures).

Chapter 4.0, Section 4(f)/Section 6(f) Evaluation, provides the analysis to support determinations made under Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act of 1966 and Section 6(f) of the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act.

Chapter 5.0, Environmental Justice, discusses whether the Burbank to Los Angeles alternative may cause disproportionate impacts on low-income and minority communities. It also identifies mitigation to reduce those impacts where appropriate.

Chapter 6.0, Project Costs and Operations, summarizes the estimated capital and operations and maintenance costs for the Burbank to Los Angeles Build Alternative evaluated in this Draft EIR/EIS.

Chapter 7.0, Other NEPA/CEQA Considerations, summarizes the Burbank to Los Angeles Build Alternative’s environmental effects under NEPA, the significant adverse environmental effects that cannot be avoided under CEQA, and the significant irreversible environmental changes that would occur as a result of the project or irretrievable commitments of resources or foreclosure of future options.

Chapter 8.0, Preferred Alternative, describes the Preferred Alternative and the basis for identifying the Preferred Alternative.

Chapter 9.0, Public and Agency Involvement, contains summaries of coordination and outreach activities with agencies and the general public during preparation of this Draft EIR/EIS.

Chapter 10.0, Draft EIR/EIS Distribution, identifies the public agencies, tribes, and organizations that were informed of the availability of, and locations to obtain, this Draft EIR/EIS.

Chapter 11.0, List of Preparers, provides the names and responsibilities of the authors of this Draft EIR/EIS.

Chapter 12.0, References/Sources Used in Document Preparation, cites the references and contacts used in writing this Draft EIR/EIS.

Chapter 13.0, Glossary of Terms, provides a definition of certain terms used in this Draft EIR/EIS.

Chapter 14.0, Index, provides a tool to cross-reference major topics used in this Draft EIR/EIS.

Chapter 15.0, Acronyms and Abbreviations, defines the acronyms and abbreviations used in this Draft EIR/EIS.

Volume 2 – Technical Appendices

Appendices provide additional details on the Burbank to Los Angeles Project Section and the Build Alternative evaluated in the Draft EIR/EIS. Technical appendices, included in Volume 2, are primarily related to the affected environment and environmental consequences analyses. These appendices are numbered to match their corresponding section in Chapter 3, as well as Chapter 2, of this Draft EIR/EIS (e.g., 3.2-A is the first appendix for Section 3.2, Transportation).

Volume 3 – Preliminary Engineering for Project Definition

These are detailed design drawings, including trackway, right-of-way, structures, grade separations, utilities, systems, stations, and construction phasing.

Green Practices

Project Section Details

Select a project section to learn more: 

CONTACT

Environmental
(916) 324-1541
info@hsr.ca.gov

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