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Earthquake

Beverly Hills School District to Conduct Earthquake Study; Hoping to Disprove Metro's Findings

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Tue, Dec 20, 2011 at 11:17 AM
click to enlarge BHUSD is fighting until the bitter end
  • BHUSD is fighting until the bitter end

Last week, L.A. Weekly reported on how Metro may have manipulated a seismic study to move the Westside Subway Extension station in Century City. That story can be viewed here.

The move would result in $60 million more in publicly-subsidized Measure R funds and would require tunneling under Beverly Hills High School. Beverly Hills Unified School District, understandably, is not too thrilled with the results.

Burrowing under the school could endanger future development on the high school campus and inhibit the school district from using $334 million in recently passed subsidies. So, BHUSD is fighting back.

They are planning to spend at least $400,000 to conduct an earthquake study that BHUSD board president Brian Goldberg says "provide more accurate data for the area."

According to CurbedLA, trenching will be conducted by seismic engineering firm Leighton Consultance. The extensive digging technique is necessary for determining if an earthquake fault should be listed under the Alquist-Priolo Zoning Act, which prohibits new construction in fault zones. Metro failed to do any trenching during its testing.

Goldberg says that BHUSD's testing will "without a doubt" be more extensive than Metro's. "This [trenching] will give us the best data available."

If the results, which should be completed in two months, conclude the fault is not a threat, they have the potential to undermine Metro's plans to move the subway station.

If they confirm that the fault is active and dangerous, then the fault could be listed under Alquist-Priolo and would inhibit future development in the area and solidify that the Century City Subway station be moved, resulting in tunneling under Beverly Hills High School.

Either way, we are in for one hell of a brawl.

"For us there is no real compromise with MTA," says Goldberg. "We would be the first and only school in California with subway tunnels underneath instructional facilities."

Will heavy-weight Metro be able to finally knock out underdog BHUSD? Or will BHUSD pull-off a monumental upset?

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