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The Press Enterprise (Riverside, CA)
The Dodgers and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority have proposed building an aerial tramway connecting Union Station with Dodger Stadium, Metro chairman and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced on Thursday.
Garcetti said a 1.25-mile tramway or gondola system would whisk fans high over Olvera Street and directly onto Dodger Stadium premises.
The project would be paid for by the Dodgers and could be operational by the 2022 baseball season, he said.
"Last year we saw how much of a nightmare it was getting in and out (of the stadium). We hope this can provide a solution," Garcetti said.
Metro will be working with a private contractor on environmental reviews and design studies, he said.
"I'm absolutely confident that this will happen," he said, when asked about other project ideas that sit on the shelf and never get done.
"The Dodgers have lined up the sponsors for this. It's an exciting moment in L.A."
Aerial Rapid Transit Technologies LLC is the private company that would build the tramway.
"We are proud to work together to create and finance this innovative and zero-carbon transportation solution for Los Angeles." ARTT founder Drew McCourt, son of former Dodgers owner Frank McCourt, said.
The proposed system could move more than 5,000 riders per hour in each direction, benefiting surrounding communities by reducing traffic on roadways. The aerial system would get fans from downtown to Dodger Stadium in about five minutes, according to a statement released by ARTT.
The cost of the project is $125 million, ARTT said.
Garcetti said Thursday the Dodgers came to him with the idea.
"I've been talking about this for years. But when the Dodgers came to me, I thought it was brilliant that they would finance it and not have to use any taxpayers money."
He said the aerial tram could potentially be used during the 2028 Summer Olympics.
"We will hopefully have baseball and softball (at the Olympics). We hope Paris keeps it going in 2024."
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