Preparation of the environmental document began in July 2016 to clear the West Valley Corridor Connector Alignment, as approved by the Omnitrans Board of Directors in September 2016. The proposed Project is subject to state and federal environmental review requirements because it involves the use of local, state and federal funding, including funds administered by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). Based on the Project’s multiple funding sources, the environmental documentation was prepared jointly in compliance with both the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. SBCTA is the lead agency under CEQA. FTA is the lead agency under NEPA.
A joint Environmental Impact Report and Environmental Assessment (EIR/EA) was prepared, in cooperation with the FTA, to evaluate potentially significant environmental impacts associated with implementation of the proposed Project. The draft EIR/EA proposes appropriate and feasible mitigation measures that would reduce or eliminate potentially significant impacts and considers multiple alternatives to the proposed Project. The draft EIR/EA analyzed two Build Alternatives: A and B.
In January 2018, the Board of Directors approved Alternative B as the SBCTA Locally Preferred Alternative, subject to completion of the CEQA/NEPA review.
The draft EIR/EA was circulated for forty-five (45) calendar days to allow government agencies, the public, and all stakeholders to provide comments on the draft environmental document and to the Project in general. The 45-day public circulation period commenced on June 24, 2019 and ended on August 8, 2019. Four public meetings were held within the 45-day circulation period to inform the public of the results of the environmental impact analysis of the proposed project in the draft EIR/EA and encourage public input.
These meetings occurred on July 17, 18, 31, and August 1, 2019, in the Cities of Fontana, Ontario, Pomona and Rancho Cucamonga, respectively. Each meeting was held in an open house format with various exhibits and a brief presentation explaining details of the Project. Following the presentation, attendees were encouraged to review the exhibits and consult with members from the FTA, SBCTA, Omnitrans and the consultant team.