University City Trolley Expansion to Finish in 2021

Josh Click, Photo Editor

   In 2021, the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System will have finished expanding the San Diego trolley to University City and, in turn, give trolley access to the surrounding communities.

   San Diego Gas and Electric Senior Environmental Specialist Elizabeth Imada said, “I think the Mid Coast Trolley extension is going to be a great way to connect a lot of San Diegans with the places they need to be. There are so many people that would like public transportation to get downtown or up to places in the UTC area, like the mall and UCSD, and before now there has not been an efficient way to do that. Once the trolley goes live, however, there will be a lot of opportunities for commuters to take public transportation to get to work, and for people to go downtown or up the coast on the weekends.”

   Imada added, “I think it will reduce a lot of traffic, and when considering all of the environmental planning, city permitting and coordination, and involvement that all of the various stakeholders have put in so far, it will be a big improvement to the region.”

   Sophomore Noah Bolton said, “The road work with the new expansion of the trolley has especially affected the way I get to my house; after taking the exit off of Balboa Avenue, there are a bunch of roadblocks slimming down the road. Learning how to drive over here has been difficult. Although there are downsides, once all of the closures are done I will definitely use this trolley. It will be a great efficient way to get to different destinations.”

   According to NBC San Diego, “One business that continues to thrive during these unprecedented times is construction, and the Mid-Coast Trolley Expansion project’s good progress has actually been helped by the coronavirus pandemic. Crews have been busy over the last couple of months putting down track and finishing bridge decks for the county’s largest transportation infrastructure project” (

   The pandemic has led to extra safety precautions for construction workers. “I think that in general, construction crews always have extensive safety measures in place. With COVID-19, I think there are probably extra precautions that crews have to consider, like making sure they are wearing appropriate PPE [personal protective equipment] for both their job and for their personal health,” Imada continued.

   “I would guess that there are extra rules around where and when they can take lunch breaks, how many hand-washing stations have to be at each active construction site, and what training meetings look like. But, I don’t think that the progress of the project will be affected too greatly by COVID-19, especially since the project is almost done,” said Imada.