Tag Archives: Metrolink

Funds Granted for Double Tracks for Downtown Burbank Metrolink Station

Burbank officials announced that the California State Transportation Agency has awarded $107 million for a Metrolink Antelope Valley double track project as part of a $500 million grant to 17 recipients in Transit and Intercity Rail Capital Program grants for transformative transit and rail projects.

This will be combined with Measure M funding to complete the project although the amount of the Measure M funding was not disclosed by but the total budget is over $220 million. This will result in 30-minute bi-directional service between Los Angeles Union Station and Santa Clarita, with trains stopping every 30 minutes at each station in both directions all day. Downtown Burbank will have trains even more frequently because of the Metrolink Ventura Line trains.

In the release Burbank Mayor Sharon Springer said, ““The $107 million in grant awards made to the Metrolink Antelope Valley double track project will help increase transit service, ease traffic congestion and reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” said Burbank Mayor Sharon Springer. “This is a big win for our community, and when you add the Ventura Line and Amtrak, we get close to our goal of a train from Burbank to downtown LA every 15 minutes.”

According to the  California State Transportation Agency, this will add targeted capacity-increasing infrastructure, increase service in step with new capacity, and assess the feasibility of rail multiple unit and zero-emission propulsion service through a pilot project on the Metrolink Antelope Valley Line. Together, the components will allow regular 60-minute bi-directional service on the entire line, and 30-minute bi-directional service between Los Angeles Union Station and Santa Clarita.

Simone McFarland, Burbank’s Public Information Officer said by email, “This project increases ridership by helping to get some of the 128,000 people who commute into Burbank each day off the road.  It will also be a terrific amenity to the Downtown, First Street Village and the La Terra project.  As we add more housing and jobs in Downtown, this will help with traffic problems and parking Downtown and at the Metrolink parking lot.”

The project should be completed by 2027.

 

Metrolink Awarded $10.7 Million for Rail Safety and Operations Improvements in Burbank and Glendale

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) has announced an award of $10.7 million from the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements (CRISI) Grant Program to fund passenger rail safety and speed improvement projects in the critical Burbank-Anaheim Rail Corridor, one of the busiest thoroughfares in Southern California. 

This $10.7 million grant will partially fund the Burbank Corridor Speed and Safety Improvements Project, which will enhance service on Metrolink’s Ventura County and Antelope Valley lines. Nearly 100 passenger and freight trains operate each weekday through Burbank and Glendale. The federal award will be matched with state funds to cover the balance of the project. 

“We are thankful to U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao, Federal Railroad Administration Administrator Ronald Batory and California’s Congressional delegation for supporting this award,” said Metrolink Board Chair Brian Humphrey. “These funds will support much-needed safety and operational improvements in a heavily traveled rail corridor.”

Funds from the CRISI Grant Program are designed to increase safety, efficiency and reliability of intercity passenger and freight rail systems. This Los Angeles County project will improve the tracks and signal controls between Metrolink’s Burbank Airport-South and Glendale stations, which will reduce train congestion and increase on-time performance on track shared with Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner and Coast Starlight services, along with the Union Pacific Railroad freight services. 

“I applaud the funding announced by the Federal Railroad Administration to support Metrolink’s important Burbank Corridor Safety and Speed Improvements Project,” said Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank). “This project, located in my district, will help Metrolink improve station safety for pedestrians, reduce travel time and improve speed in this crucial intercity and regional rail corridor, and I am thrilled to see it move forward.”

In addition to the projects along the Burbank-Anaheim Rail Corridor, Metrolink is working to implement the Southern California Optimized Rail Expansion (SCORE) Program which will improve rail infrastructure to facilitate more frequent service by the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic and Paralympic Games.

According to the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC), the SCORE Program is expected to create 113,100 jobs before the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games and an estimated 1.36 million jobs by 2050. The LAEDC also estimates SCORE will add more than $1.17 trillion to Southern California’s economy, while reducing 51.7 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions.

“With roadways in Southern California at capacity and population continuing to grow, more people are looking for an environmentally-friendly alternative to driving that also allows them to avoid freeway traffic,” said Humphrey. “This grant allows us to improve the service to our customers, so we can continue our record-breaking trend of ridership growth.”

Metrolink has experienced ridership growth for five years in a row. Last year, Metrolink set a ridership record with nearly 12 million passenger boardings, which removed an estimated 9.3 million car trips from our congested freeways resulting in a reduction of 130,000 metric tons of GHG and 339 million vehicle miles traveled system wide.

Metrolink Holiday Express Train

Meet Santa Claus and hop aboard the Holiday Train on Sunday, December 8th at the Downtown Burbank Metrolink Station! Board the festively decorated train for an immersive and magical experience. This holiday ride will include carolers, visit from Santa Clause and his elves, and meet and greets with animated feature characters. For more information about this exciting event and to purchase tickets, visit https://bit.ly/2DnFfIw

Police Investigate Stabbing at Downtown Metrolink Station

Burbank police received a call around 4:45 pm Tuesday of a man who had been stabbed in the neck near the Burbank Metrolink Station.

Burbank Police Forensic Specialists gather property and evidence from the crime scene. ( Photo by Ross A Benson)

In an email statement provided by Sgt. Derek Green of the Burbank Police Department, “When police officers arrived, they located an adult male victim with a stab wound to the neck area. The victim was transported to a local hospital for treatment.

The suspect remains outstanding at this time.  He was described as an African American man, 50 to 60 years old.”

While no motive for the stabbing is yet known, detectives are actively working the investigation. A report from the scene, but not confirmed, said the suspect had taken the man’s wallet.

Burbank Police Officers get assignments and gather witness statements at the MetroLink following a stabbing of a male. (Photo by Ross A Benson)

No update on the victim’s condition is available.

Officials Open New Train to Plane Metrolink Stop in Burbank

(Photo by © Ross A Benson)

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro), Metrolink and Hollywood Burbank Airport officials celebrated the completion of a new Metrolink Antelope Valley Line rail station that will connect travelers with the Hollywood Burbank Airport in the San Fernando Valley.  The station will officially open to the public on Monday, May 14.

The station should help reduce vehicle trips on the I-5 freeway and roads in the many residential neighborhoods near the airport.  Air travelers will be able to seamlessly connect to and from the new station via a free shuttle operated by the Hollywood Burbank Airport. New station amenities will include rail ticket vending machines, benches, bike racks and LED display boards showing arrival and departure times for trains, buses, and planes. A pedestrian sidewalk and transit plaza will be built adjacent to the station platform and San Fernando Boulevard.

“More travelers are coming through our airports than ever before — and we’re giving them new ways to get where they’re going when the plane ride is over,” said Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Eric Garcetti. “This new Metrolink connection will seamlessly link our transportation network with the Hollywood Burbank Airport — while easing congestion in one of our busiest corridors.”

Located on the northwestern corner of Hollywood Way and San Fernando Boulevard between the cities of Burbank and Los Angeles, the new station will also be within walking distance of the planned airport terminal facility that will replace the current terminal, as well as a future proposed mixed-use development.

“Metro and its partners are making good on their promise to improve connections with airports countywide including Burbank, one the nation’s most convenient airports,” said Supervisor Kathryn Barger, a Metro Board Member. 

Metrolink’s Antelope Valley Line runs between Los Angeles Union Station, the Northeast San Fernando Valley, Santa Clarita, Palmdale and Lancaster seven days a week. The station is the second to serve Hollywood Burbank Airport. Metrolink’s Ventura County Line also provides a station stop on the other side of the airport with train service on weekdays only.

(Photo by © Ross A Benson)

“The City of Burbank is excited to have another transportation alternative for both our residents and employees who work and reside in our city,” stated Burbank Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy.  “Additionally, the new station will act as an essential part of our future vision for the Airport/Golden State District.”

 “With the opening of the Burbank Airport-North Metrolink Station, passengers from Lancaster to Los Angeles will now be able to connect to Hollywood Burbank Airport on the Antelope Valley Line,” said Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority President and Pasadena Mayor Terry Tornek. “We’re proud to be the only Southern California airport to offer plane-to-train connections at two train stations, including the existing Burbank Airport-South Station, which serves passengers from East Ventura to Union Station on Metrolink’s Ventura County Line and from San Luis Obispo to San Diego on Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner.”

“Metro is glad to build and be a major funding partner for this new transit connection to the Hollywood Burbank Airport,” said Metro CEO Phillip A. Washington. “Metro’s transportation transformation will continue to deliver more and better options to many of our important regional destinations.”

(Photo by © Ross A Benson)

“With the new Metrolink Burbank Airport-North Station, there is finally a daily connection to the Hollywood Burbank Airport on the Antelope Valley Line, one of our fastest growing lines,” said Metrolink CEO Art Leahy. “This new train to plane connection provides an opportunity for people to save time and money spent for parking by taking Metrolink instead.”

Construction of the new station began in March 2017. The project was built by C.A. Rasmussen, INC., of Valencia, California. The $15 million project was delivered on-time and under budget.

Man Threatening Security Guards at Metrolink with Pellet Gun Arrested

On Wednesday, May 2 at 2:00 p.m., Burbank Police responded to a call about a man possibly holding a gun near the Metrolink Station on Front St.

One of the first units on the scene was Burbank’s Air Unit and the Tactical Flight Officers in the helicopter saw the man who appeared to be holding a handgun aimed at two security guards. The suspect was seen getting into a minivan and leaving the Metrolink Station. Responding officers witnessed the van get on the I-5 freeway and pulled it over south of Alameda Ave. The minivan turned out to be an Uber.

Police detained the driver and discovered a pellet gun inside the vehicle, which resembled a real handgun.

The suspect has been identified as Anthony Barraza, 23 of Sun Valley.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

It seems that an argument between Barraza and Metrolink security guards over a smoking ordinance allegedly caused him to lash out and threaten them with the pellet gun.

Before leaving the Metrolink Station, the suspect attempted to get into another vehicle by displaying the pellet gun at a driver.

He was arrested and booked for attempted carjacking and criminal threats.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Barraza is currently being held on $100,000 bail and is due in court Friday, May 4.

Burbank Firefighters Rescue Male From Beneath MetroLink Train

(Photo by Ross A Benson)

The Burbank Fire and Police Departments were called at around 5:00 p.m. to respond to a reported person who either jumped or fell in front of southbound MetroLink train number 150 as it was approaching the Burbank MetroLink Station.

Firefighters located a male that appeared in his 20s or 30s beneath the main locomotive car on the west tracks. He had a pulse and was breathing. They loaded him upon a stretcher and transported him to a local trauma center.

All trains coming and going from the station were stopped during the investigation. Many Burbank residents bound from downtown’s Union Station were stuck or had to find alternative transportation.

Burbank Police assisted people across the tracks to awaiting buses. (Photo by Ross A Benson)

Burbank police officers assisted the people who were at the station to buses waiting to take them to other destinations.

Per a Metrolink spokesperson, no riders on the 150 train were injured in the incident and the investigation is still ongoing by law enforcement and MetroLink  officials.

 

 

 

 

“Burbank Common” Restaurant and Brewery Coming Downtown

( Photo Courtesy Community Development Department Website)

Owner of the popular local bar “Tony’s Darts Away” and founder of Golden Road Brewery, Tony Yanow is partnering with the City of Burbank to open a new restaurant and brewery at 10 W. Magnolia Blvd which will be called “Burbank Common.”

Located adjacent to the downtown Burbank Metrolink station, the project will involve the demolition of a 70,000 square-feet storage warehouse to be replaced with a restaurant, a craft beer pub, a roller derby rink, and possibly food carts. Space will be reduced to 33,000 square-feet to provide an outdoor recreation area. It is currently unknown how many restaurants the 2.4-acre site will include.

( Photo Courtesy Community Development Department Website)

Burbank Common will utilize the 471 parking spaces located near the Metrolink station. Although more than half of the spaces are used by those riding the Metro during the day, it is hoped there will be enough room to accommodate customers in the evening.

“For intermittent larger events that will occur one to two times per month, it is anticipated that parking can be provided offsite in existing parking facilities in Downtown Burbank and a shuttle system could be employed to shuttle attendees to and from events,” said Ross Young, a project manager for Burbank.

To ensure that the Metrolink parking will not be overwhelmed, a “full parking study” will be conducted during the environmental review process.

Although the city will retain ownership of the property, Yanow will operate Burbank Common with his restaurant group, the Artisanal Brewers Collective.

“His company has the resources and experience to independently build and operate the facility and they are proposing to incorporate features that would provide significant community-wide benefits,” said Young.

“If approved by the City Council, the proposed project would have a number of benefits for the City. The project would also provide a much-needed event center which would complement the existing businesses and hotels in Downtown Burbank and throughout the City by attracting outside visitors to Burbank.”

(Photo by © Ross A Benson)

In 2008, the city attempted to demolish the same warehouse but could not receive support from City Council due to the high cost. The warehouse which was formally owned by AmeriCold has six-feet thick cement walls that make it difficult to demolish. From 2011 to 2016, the property was controlled by a different redevelopment agency.

“From a fiscal standpoint, the project would facilitate over $10 million in private sector investment, while creating jobs, boosting tourism, and increasing the City’s tax base,” said Young.

Burbank Common is currently going through its environmental analysis and “community outreach phase.” The project is expected to be presented to the Burbank Planning Board and City Council before September.

New Apartments, Businesses Included in Olive Stations Project

With a new influx of multi-use buildings heading to Burbank, one that is making a splash is the Olive Station development. The site of the future building can be located at the southeast intersection of Olive Boulevard and Lake Avenue. The land is currently owned by the Cusumano Real Estate Group.

In total, the building will feature 327 studios, one bedroom, two bedroom, three bedroom, and four-bedroom apartments. The variety in apartments is meant to provide options in affordable housing to Burbank residents. Hired to design the building will be the award-winning architectural firm Newman Garrison + Partners.

When asked why the Cusumano Real Estate Group when with Newman Garrison + Partners, Michael Cusumano said:

“We conducted an exhaustive search of all of the best design firms in this region, and went as far as to engage five different firms to produce concept drawings for the site, before finally selecting the firm of Newman-Garrison (NG+P) to design the project. And NG+P hit it out of the park. As is evidenced by the design submitted, and their plethora of design awards, Newman-Garrison will bring a new, cutting edge design to Burbank, and set the standard for all future mixed-use projects in the City. (NG+P) has completed projects in Spain, India, Russia, and in the Caribbean, as well as California, where they have designed some of the most recognizable southern California buildings in recent years such as West Park at Civita, The Ellington, The Q East, and the Dylan.

Olive Station will be an architectural landmark as well as a really fantastic place to live. Our team also includes such acclaimed firms as EPT Design (landscape architecture), KGM Architectural Lighting, and John Labib + Associates (structural and civil engineering).”

The goal of this building is to offer a choice to millennials and families alike. Cusumano hopes potential residents will take notice to Olive Stations’ location, amenities, design, sustainability, lifestyle, Affordability.”



To entice potential residents, plans for the building also include a an array of common spaces, which include a game room, a bocce ball course, a resort-style pool and spa with cabanas, outdoor dining/BBQ areas, fire pits, retail stores, an outdoor movie theatre, a media center, terrace amenities, a club/lounge area with a private wine room, and a state-of-art fitness center. Located at the ground floor will be a commercial grocery store.

When asked how Olive Stations plans to combat the affordable housing problem in Burbank, Cusuamano said; “First of all, no one has ever built “live-work” loft units in Burbank, and there are almost no 3 and 4-bedroom units in Burbank. No one has ever built this type of a project in Burbank. The Co-Work spaces will also appeal to millennials as well. And this will be the first project in many years where the Developer is including rent restricted affordable units. And great access to employment, Downtown Burbank and Metrolink station. Families, millennials, boomers; everyone will be attracted to this project.”

Olive Stations is expected to be completed by the year 2021. You can find the full list of amenities and features, provided by the Cusumano Real Estate Group, down below:

  • Amenities:
    • Full concierge service
    • Resort style lap pool & spa
    • Huge common spaces with fire features
    • Seating and cabanas throughout courtyards
    • Outdoor kitchen and dining areas
    • BBQ kitchen and outdoor dining
    • Beautiful garden landscaping
    • Water features
    • Several large lounging areas
    • Private lounge with billiard tables, big screen TV’s
    • High speed internet and Wifi
    • Screening and media room
    • Private fitness club with state of the art equipment, with spin and yoga studio
    • Business center with conference room, computers and professional print/ scan/ copy/ fax stations
    • Dry-cleaning and laundry drop-off and pick-up services
    • Private spa facilities for sauna and massages
    • Zip-Car access
    • Wine storage facility
    • On-site ATM
    • Bicycle parking, storage and maintenance with bike shop
    • EV charging stations
    • Ample guest parking
    • Gated community with key fob access controls
    • Roof top deck and lounge with bar, big screen TV’s and fire features
    • Dog park
    • Solar water heating
    • Solar PV
    • Co-work space
    • Extra storage facilities
    • 24 Hour package pick up and drop off system
    • Highspeed Electric Elevators

Apartment Homes:

  • Features:
    • Gourmet stainless steel “Jenn-Air” kitchen appliances
    • AT&T U-Verse with fiber cable to the units and 1G internet speeds
    • Stone countertops
    • Designer cabinets
    • 9’-11’ ceilings
    • High efficiency “Whirlpool” washer and gas dryer in units
    • Large private balconies
    • Private yards (selected units)
    • Fireplaces (some units)
    • Oversized walk-in closets with custom shelving
    • Energy efficient dual glazed windows throughout
    • Upgraded finishes throughout
    • Low VOC carpets, paints, and adhesives

 

Glendale Woman Killed After Being Hit by Metrolink Train

A woman was struck and killed by a Metrolink passenger train Thursday evening near the Downtown Burbank train station, located at 201 North Front Street.

On Thursday, October 26, Burbank Police responded to the area shortly after 8:00 P.M. following reports of a pedestrian struck near the train platform. The Metrolink train, line number 225, was bound for Lancaster as a final destination and traveling northbound. As the train approached the Downtown Burbank station, its engineer saw a female sitting on the railroad tracks. The engineer sounded the train’s horn to alert the woman, but she was fatally struck.

Burbank Police Detectives, Metrolink Officials, a Los Angeles County Coroner Investigator, and members from the Los Angeles County Sheriffs’ Department all responded to the scene. At the time of the incident, there were approximately 124 passengers and two crew members on-board the train. All passengers and crew members were interviewed and there were no injuries reported on the train.

Several Metrolink trains were delayed while the investigation was being conducted.

The victim has been identified as Lydia Savadjian, a 34-year-old woman from Glendale, California. It is not certain whether Savadjian’s actions were intentional or accidental. It is also not known if drugs and/or alcohol were factors in this incident. The investigation is ongoing.

The Burbank Police Department would like to remind the public to always obey railroad crossing markings, warning signals, and control devices. Only cross railroad tracks at designated public crossing points, and when safe to do so. Railroad tracks, trestles, and equipment are private property. Never loiter or play on or near railroad tracks. Doing so can result in grave consequences, including serious injury and in many cases, death.