The California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) today is extending the public review period for the Burbank to Los Angeles Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS) an additional 31 days to Aug. 31, 2020, bringing the total comment period to 94 days.
In consideration of limitations caused by the outbreak of COVID-19, the Authority elected to again extend the public review period for the Draft EIR/EIS to provide additional time for review and comments. The public review period, initially set to expire July 16, 2020, had previously been extended to July 31, 2020.
Recognizing the immense challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Authority shifted its outreach approach in early March, transitioning from in-person informational open houses to webcast open houses in anticipation of the release of the draft environmental documents. The Authority has since created a standalone website with Draft EIR/EIS and explanatory videos, presented a live webcast open house meeting, and hosted a telephone town hall with calls placed to more than 40,000 stakeholders residing along the corridor.
During this second extension, Authority staff will continue conducting targeted outreach, offering additional staff office hours, telephone town hall and/or virtual meetings. The Authority will provide more specific information on these focused outreach efforts as soon as plans have been formalized and meeting dates are available.
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.
The public hearing for Burbank to Los Angeles Section Draft EIR/EIS was held July 8, 2020, via teleconference and online video conference, rather than in-person meeting. The virtual public hearing included a webcast and moderated call-in number for the public to submit oral comments. This was the only opportunity to provide live oral comment on the Draft EIR/EIS.
To view a recorded live stream of the public hearing, telephone town hall or virtual open house, please visit the Community Open House Meetings Section of the following Authority webpage: https://hsr.ca.gov/high_speed_rail/project_sections/burbank_los_angeles.aspx
The public can continue to submit comments on the Burbank to Los Angeles EIR/EIS the following ways:
- Via web comment form on the Authority’s website: https://www.hsr.ca.gov/programs/environmental/eis_eir/draft_burbank_los_angeles_comment.aspx
- Via email to [email protected] with the subject line “Burbank to Los Angeles Draft EIR/EIS Comment”
- Oral comment on the direct phone line for the Burbank to Los Angeles Project Section at 877-977-1660
- Via mail at the address below:
Attn: Burbank to Los Angeles Draft EIR/EIS
California High-Speed Rail Authority
355 S Grand Avenue, Suite 2050
Los Angeles, CA 90071
After the comment period closes Aug. 31, 2020, and the comments received have been evaluated, staff will prepare and issue the Final EIR/EIS document and present it to the Authority Board of Directors to consider certification and project approval under the California Environmental Quality Act and National Environmental Policy Act.
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.C. 327 and a Memorandum of Understanding dated July 23, 2019 and executed by the Federal Railroad Administration and the State of California.
To view the contents of the Draft EIR/EIS, please visit: https://www.hsr.ca.gov/programs/environmental/eis_eir/draft_burbank_los_angeles.aspx
This article was released by the California High Speed Rail Authority.