Port of Los Angeles Nets $20M Federal Infrastructure Grant

Image via Port of Los Angeles.

The Port of Los Angeles and a range of elected officials and industry leaders joined U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Sept. 7 to celebrate the award of a $20 million federal infrastructure grant for a critical road-railway grade separation project at the port.

“We’re proud to be here marking such important progress being made, but also recognizing that there is so much more to do to fix the supply chains that were torn up by the pandemic and to make them more resilient for years to come – and right here we have a great example of that,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said.

“We are delighted to formally celebrate the award of $20 million to the Port of Los Angeles to reduce trucking delays and allow freight trains to move goods more rapidly, reducing shipping costs as part of the fight against inflation,” he added.

Facilitating faster cargo movement, the new roadway configuration is expected to streamline truck access to an important container and chassis-access facility on the port’s Terminal Island, reducing traffic delays, truck dwell times and greenhouse gas emissions from idling vehicles.

“L.A.’s port isn’t just the backbone of our region’s prosperity—it’s one of America’s most powerful economic drivers, and a crossroads that helps connect our country to the rest of the world,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti commented. “When complete, this roadway … will help our port move cargo more efficiently and meet our most critical sustainability goals.”

Port of Los Angeles  Executive Director Gene Seroka called the grant “a milestone moment in the investment in our nation’s ports.”

“I applaud Secretary Buttigieg for bringing this critical funding to where it’s needed most,” Seroka said. “As the Western Hemisphere’s busiest trade gateway, this grant will help us further accelerate our plans to build resiliency, increase efficiencies and sustainability, as well as create jobs.”

The project entails construction of a four-lane, rail-roadway grade separation, which would  allow unimpeded truck access to an 80-acre marine support facility on Terminal Island, a central location serving all terminals in the San Pedro Bay port complex.

Currently, access to this facility for chassis and empty shipping container storage is impeded by several heavily used rail tracks and a tunnel with low vertical clearance, both of which would be addressed by the project, according to the port.

When completed, the new rail-roadway would connect trucks directly to the highway system in two directions, resulting in a reduction of 2,500 truck-hour delays daily; a decrease of more than 3,000 metric tons of emissions per year; and a reduction of 1,200 truck miles traveled per day, which will also decrease accident potential in the area. The project will generate 300 new jobs.

The $20 million award comes from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) discretionary grant program, which received more funding under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act passed by Congress in 2021.

RAISE grants focus on planning and capital investments that support roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports and intermodal transportation.