The Federal Transit Administration signed a key document approving the environmental review of the Mid-Coast Trolley Project.

Called the “Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement,” the approval of this environmental review is an important step forward in the effort to extend trolley service to the northern part of San Diego, according to Sandag, the regional transportation planning agency.

“This is great news for our region,” said Supervisor Ron Roberts, a member of the Sandag board. “Obtaining the record of decision from the FTA brings us closer to providing fast, reliable transit service to dozens of communities and regional assets like the VA Hospital and UC San Diego.”

The next step will be for the Sandag Board of Directors to certify the state environmental review. This is anticipated to happen in November, Sandag said.

According to Sandag, the Mid-Coast Trolley is one of the region’s highest priority transit projects and is included in the TransNet Early Action Program. As an extension of the Trolley’s Blue Line, when complete, it will provide a one-seat (no transfer) ride from the international border and communities south of downtown San Diego to University City.

Under the current schedule, construction on the Mid-Coast Trolley is anticipated to start in late 2015, with service beginning in 2019. In May, the Sandag board selected Mid Coast Transit Constructors, a joint venture firm of Stacy & Witbeck Inc., Skanska USA, and Herzog Contracting Corp., to serve as the construction manager/general contractor for the project, Sandag said.