The LA Metro logo is visible on a large brick wall in front of the main building and on the building itself.

Southwestern Yard Maintenance Facility Design and Construction Administration


Our Client’s Challenge

With a strong focus on sustainability, the $172 million Southwestern Yard Maintenance Facility was built to efficiently service and repair light-rail vehicles (LRVs) for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA Metro) transit system.

The facility supports the newly opened Crenshaw/LAX Transit Corridor project, which connects downtown and the Westside region of Los Angeles with the South Bay region of Los Angeles County.

Situated on a 17.6-acre former rental car facility site for Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), the project is located at the future intersection of the Crenshaw/LAX Line and the LAX People Mover. It will be a visible gateway to Los Angeles for thousands of travelers using public transit to reach LAX.

Completed in 2019, Southwestern Yard is large enough to service and store 56 LRVs and could be expanded to accommodate 70. The facility earned a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification for its energy-efficient features, which include a water capture and reuse system for vehicle washing. This system and other water-saving fixtures reduce water consumption by 40% to reduce runoff pollution and lessen the burden on municipal systems. Drought-tolerant landscape plantings eliminate the need for watering.

Our Solution

Gannett Fleming designed the facility, including an outdoor test track, traction power substation, and overhead contact system (OCS), and provided construction administration services.

The 115,000-square-foot facility features:

  • Five maintenance bays.
  • A two-level administration area.
  • A small shops area.
  • A two-story parts storage system designed to be expandable.

It is fully equipped to handle LRV service and inspection, motor and body repairs, painting, cleaning, and washing. Because of its location in a region at risk of seismic activity, the facility was developed following seismic design principles to prevent or reduce damage in the event of an earthquake.

The track configuration and site layout support safe LRV movement between functional facilities, storage sites, and mainline tracks. A 750-volt traction power substation and OCS provide electricity to the LRVs. The facility features on-site stormwater treatment to remove oil from runoff and prevent municipal system overloads.

The team used building information modeling (BIM) on the project, including for complex underground components of the yard. While commonplace for buildings, the integration of BIM is unusual in the transportation infrastructure sector. Its application serves as a model for the industry and is a case study for BIM’s use in future rail yard projects.

Completed on time and on budget, this project exemplifies how accelerated maintenance facility projects can serve as a backbone for sustainable transportation to benefit the entire community.

Key Features

  • Five maintenance bays enable full inspection and repair of LA Metro LRVs.
  • Parts storage system facilitates quick LRV repair and can be expanded if needed.
  • 750-volt substation and OCS provide power to move LRVs throughout the facility.

Sustainability Features & Results

  • More than 20% of the construction materials consist of recycled content, reducing waste and energy consumption.
  • Capture and reuse system for vehicle washing and high-efficiency plumbing fixtures reduce water usage by 40%.
  • On-site stormwater treatment reduces runoff pollution and lessens burden on municipal system.
  • Drought-tolerant landscape plantings eliminate the need for watering.
  • Bicycle parking, designated parking for fuel-efficient and carpool/vanpool vehicles, and electric vehicle charging encourage the use of energy-saving transportation by employees.


  • Support for light-rail transit line that will serve 27,400 people daily by 2035.
  • Expandable service capacity to accommodate future light-rail growth.
  • Earthquake protection to prevent or reduce damage from seismic activity.

Awards & Recognition

  • Honor Award, 2020, American Council of Engineering Companies California, Engineering Excellence Awards
  • Finalist, 2020, California Transportation Foundation, CTF Transportation Awards, Transit/Rail Project of the Year


Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority


Los Angeles, Calif.


Design, Construction Administration Services

What are you looking for?
Privacy Preferences

When you visit our website, it may store information through your browser from specific services, usually in the form of cookies. Here you can change your Privacy preferences. It is worth noting that blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience on our website and the services we are able to offer.

Our website uses cookies, mainly from third-party services. Define your Privacy Preferences and/or agree to our use of cookies.