Orange Line Improvement Project


SCH Number
Public Agency
San Diego Metropolitan Transit
Document Title
Orange Line Improvement Project
Document Type
NOE - Notice of Exemption
Document Description
On October 20, 2022, MTS’ Board of Directors accepted the 2022 Transit Intercity Rail Capital Program Grant Award for the Zero Emission Transit Enhancement Project, which includes the Orange Line Improvement Project (“Project”). The Orange Line is a light rail line in the San Diego Trolley system. The Project will span from the City of San Diego through the City of El Cajon. It will provide widespread enhancements along the 19 stations and 17.6 miles of track, resulting in (a) increased train speed, (b) grade crossing safety improvements, and (c) station passenger information sign upgrades. The Project will replace the existing crossing warning system and bi-directional signaling system, modernize the grade crossing approaches and automated block signalizing (ABS) system, and replace variable message signs (VMS). The Project will increase transit ridership and improve passenger safety and efficiencies, providing a direct and meaningful benefit to disadvantaged and low-income households/communities. The Project will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve transit service.

Contact Information

Kena M Teon
Agency Name
San Diego Metropolitan Transit System
Job Title
MTS Grants Administrator
Contact Types
Lead/Public Agency


El Cajon, La Mesa, Lemon Grove, San Diego
San Diego
Citywide, Countywide
Other Location Info
18 miles long - The route connects Downtown San Diego with the cities of Lemon Grove, La Mesa, and El Cajon.

Notice of Exemption

Exempt Status
Categorical Exemption
Type, Section or Code
Class 1, 14 Cal. Code Regs., § 15301 (existing facilities) Class 2, 14 Cal. Code Regs., § 15302 (replacement or reconstr
Reasons for Exemption
The Project is exempt under Public Resources Code section 21080.25, subdivision (b), which includes projects that would improve customer information and wayfinding for transit riders (subdivision (b)(2)), transit prioritization projects (subdivision (b)(3)), and the maintenance, repair, relocation replacement, or removal of any utility infrastructure associated with these types of projects (subdivision (b)(7)). The Project is further statutorily exempt from environmental review under Public Resource Code section 21080, subdivision (b)(10) and State CEQA Guidelines section 15275, subdivision (a) because it will increase passenger or commuter services on rail lines already in use, including the modernization of existing stations and parking facilities. The project is categorically exempt under State CEQA Guidelines section 15301 (Class 1) as a transit improvement project consisting of the operation, repair, maintenance or minor alteration of existing public structures, facilities, mechanical equipment, or topographical features involving negligible or no expansion of existing or former use; State CEQA Guidelines section 15302 (Class 2) as the replacement or reconstruction of existing structures and facilities where the new structure will be located on the same site as the structure replaced and will have substantially the same purpose and capacity as the structure replaced; and State CEQA Guidelines section 15303 (Class 3) because it consists of the construction and location of limited numbers of new, small facilities or structures.
County Clerk
San Diego


Disclaimer: The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) accepts no responsibility for the content or accessibility of these documents. To obtain an attachment in a different format, please contact the lead agency at the contact information listed above. You may also contact the OPR via email at or via phone at (916) 445-0613. For more information, please visit OPR’s Accessibility Site.

Download CSV New Search Print