An at-grade(street level) crossing at Florence and Centinela poses unique safety hazards not fully evaluated or appreciated by Metro staff. The topography of the intersection, proximity to two schools, a large public park, a large church, blind corner, awkward roadway configuration, close proximity to residential properties, and the high-speed of cars traveling through this intersection all necessitate grade separation for safety reasons alone.
The high frequency of funeral processions in the immediate vicinity due to the close proximity of St. John’s Church and Inglewood Park Cemetery to the crossing would push funeral procession routes to already overburdened streets like La Brea and Crenshaw. This combined with a lack of available north-south arterials in N. Inglewood due to the already heavily utilized La Cienaga and the poor traffic flow capability of La Brea would create more traffic congestion from a project intended to address transportation challenges.
The Los Angeles County Fire Station located on Centinela is currently closed and the additional rush hour traffic congestion from the Light Rail crossing at grade would necessitate re-opening the Fire Station to keep emergency response times reasonable. Re-opening the Fire Station would cost more than placing the Rail Line below grade(below street level) at Centinela and Florence.
Light Rail lines being built in affluent areas in Southern California have zero at-grade(street level) crossings at major intersections and it is not fair from an environmental justice perspective to burden Inglewood with this poor and dangerous design.