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Richard Thorpe, chief executive officer of the Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority in Los Angeles, will retire May 6 after more than 40 years in the transit industry.Thorpe's retirement comes just prior to the scheduled May 20 opening of the second phase of the Expo's light-rail line, which will operate from downtown Los Angeles to Santa Monica, Calif. He spent the past decade overseeing the design and construction of the 15.2-mile, $2.5 billion project."It has truly been an honor to serve as Expo's CEO and work with our team, our contractors, Metro, the cities, and all our agency partners to connect downtown Los Angeles and Santa Monica by rail for the first time in over 50 years," said Thorpe in a press release. "This vital mass transit link is leading the way in regional efforts to increase mobility, and I look forward to seeing the project open to the public next month, on time and on budget."Thorpe's career included work on the San Diego, Salt Lake City and Los Angeles transit systems. His work includes serving as the program manager responsible for overseeing the design and construction of the initial light-rail line that was built prior to the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.In the L.A. area, he also oversaw design and construction of the Pasadena Light Rail Line, the San Fernando Valley Orange Line Busway and the Eastside Light Rail Line, in addition to the Expo Line. He began his career in San Diego, where he managed the city's bus and rail capital improvement program, which included the design and construction of three maintenance facilities and six light-rail extensions.
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