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L.A.'s Olympic ambitions could boost river restoration – but at what cost?

L.A.'s Olympic ambitions could boost river restoration – but at what cost?

For years, politicians, activists and community groups have been laying the groundwork for a transformation of the Los Angeles River, one that would rip up stretches of concrete and add parks, wetlands and other natural spaces.

To those advocates, few pieces of riverfront property are more crucial than the one nicknamed Piggyback Yard, on the edge of downtown. Redevelopment of the site, which houses an active rail yard, is expected to consume nearly half the river project's estimated $1.35-billion budget. At roughly 120 acres, it's the largest parcel of riverfront land targeted for restoration.

City officials had been looking at a completion date for the rail yard project of...

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