Beacon was retained to examine the impact of the light rail construction project on small businesses in the Crenshaw-LAX corridor before, during and after the construction phases. Beacon conducted a situation analysis and assessment of critical issues through review of existing research on light rail construction projects and conducted interviews with rail authority agencies in five cities (Houston, Minneapolis-St Paul, Seattle, and Phoenix) to learn about their challenges, lessons learned and best practices in developing and implementing programs to assist small businesses located in transit corridors. We further analyzed and profiled the existing small businesses along a quarter mile radius of the Crenshaw-LAX transit line, examining their historical significance in the African American community and the potential positive and negative impact of the light rail project on business disruption and continuity. Our final report examined the areas of opportunity for alignment with community stakeholders through creation of a capacity building program, and a loss mitigation fund that could provide economic relief to local business stakeholders along the Crenshaw-LAX transit corridor.
Outcome: As a result of our study, a motion was passed by the Board of LA Metro to develop a business assistance program for the Crenshaw-LAX Transit corridor and to develop similar programs for underserved communities.