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Metrolink to airport gains steam

Posted: February 8, 2014 10:53 p.m.
Updated: February 8, 2014 10:53 p.m.

A new Metrolink station that will allow rail passengers to take a direct route between the Santa Clarita Valley and the Burbank Bob Hope Airport is expected to be complete in early 2015, enhancing “rail-to-plane” transportation options for local travelers, officials say.

Construction on a new Metrolink station in Burbank is expected to begin sometime this year, within the next few months, Santa Clarita City Councilwoman Marsha McLean said in an interview.

“The station should be open and operable by early 2015,” McLean said.

The airport station will allow riders on the Metrolink Antelope Valley line — which runs from Lancaster to Los Angeles with stops in Glendale, Sylmar and locations in the Santa Clarita Valley, among other places — access to the regional airport.

Ground was broken on the new station in 2013.

“With this new Bob Hope Airport Metrolink station, residents of the Santa Clarita, Antelope and north San Fernando valleys will have safe, convenient and economical Metrolink rail service to the national air travel and local employment opportunities available at and around this regional airport,” said Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich when ground was broken.

Environmental and engineering work on the new station is expected to wrap up this month with the goal of beginning construction work in late June, according to Mark Hardyment, director of transportation and environmental programs with the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority.

The plan is for the station to be open for business in January 2015, Hardyment said.

The new station is part of an overall plan to increase and improve rail service in the area and increase the efficiency of rail transportation on the Antelope Valley line, he said.

McLean said she thinks the new station will make it easier for Santa Clarita Valley residents flying out of Burbank.

“I absolutely think there’s going to be a demand,” the city councilwoman said. “If I need to fly somewhere and it’s at all possible, I use the Burbank Bob Hope Airport.”


UsualSuspect: Posted: February 9, 2014 8:51 a.m.

I like to use Burbank also, but there are times you need to go to LAX. A prime example is traveling to SFO, you cannot get a direct flight out of Burbank, instead you have to go to SJO or OAK. Going back is east is also tough from Burbank, takes 3 times as long. I hope one day there will be service to LAX in addition to Burbank. The FlyAway to LAX is nice, but they also get stuck in traffic.

cj64: Posted: February 9, 2014 9:41 a.m.

Just another huge waste of money. This station provides nothing more than a marketing blurb for Santa Clarita. Just an item the city can put on its web sites stating that there is "public tranportation service" to Burbank Airport. This will be a "selling point" for business visitors to Santa Clarita.

Putting a metrolink there accomplishes nothing. It is still over a mile from the metrolink station to the airport.
Maybe the "officials" who wrote this article and Marsha can answer the question....

There already is a metrolink station at the airport. Instead of wasting our money on something that is unneeded, maybe the "airport officials" could make a "COVERED PEOPLE MOVER" from the BOB HOPE METROLINK STATION the short distance to the airport entry.

Also, maybe the "METROLINK OFFICIALS" could improve the tracks on the line so the train can go more than 30mph!

BBennetts: Posted: February 10, 2014 11:45 p.m.

It all doesn't matter. Marsha McLean is running scared and facing a tough re-election. The city threw her a bone and let her make a press release. Don't ask her too many tough questions.

vgbur: Posted: February 10, 2014 10:02 a.m.

Here are answers for cj64. You will get to the terminal via frequent shuttle service provided by the airport equipped with handicap-accessible access. This is a huge improvement over the current situation where one must get off at the Downtown Burbank station, then either transfer to the Metrolink Ventura County line or take the free Super Shuttle service offered by the Airport.

As to your second request for a covered people mover from the current train station to the terminal, your request is granted! The Regional Intermodal Transportation Center opening this summer includes exactly such a people mover! For now, one will have to walk across the street from the train platform to the center to catch the moving covered walkway, but Caltrans is scheduled to provide funding to build a bridge across Empire Avenue between the station and the transportation center in March. (Yes, the bridge will take a few years to build, but the funding is there!)

In the long term, the Antelope Valley Line Metrolink stop will be very close to the replacement passenger terminal, which will be built on the vacant former Lockheed property just south of the station.

EgbertSouse4U: Posted: February 10, 2014 11:30 a.m.

vgbur: Thank you for the much-needed details. I've always wondered about the metrolink station that sits right at the airport already.

cj64: Posted: February 10, 2014 1:54 p.m.

There were alot of missing statements in this article.

The fact that the present Airport Terminal is going to be replaced with a new terminal near the new Metrolink Station was never mentioned. The new Metrolink Station will provide some benefit that will be realized in maybe 5 years.

That stated, what are the answers to the present questions.

What is the huge improvement of the additional shuttle bus service from the proposed new Metrolink station over the present shuttle service from the Burbank Metrolink Station?

Is the shuttle bus service from the Burbank metrolink station going to close?

If there is a new terminal going in, whay is there a people mover and pedestrian bridge being constructed that will be obsolete in 5 years?

vgbur: Posted: February 11, 2014 8:05 a.m.

I'm not sure why UsualSuspect said there are not direct flights from Burbank to San Francisco. United Airlines operates anywhere from four to six nonstops daily to SFO and has served that market for many years. It is true that Southwest does not fly to SFO -- maybe that was the confusion?

vgbur: Posted: February 11, 2014 8:50 a.m.

More questions from cj64, so here are some answers. The Antelope Valley line stop means you get off the train sooner than using the Downtown Burbank station, the new stop is a lot closer to the airport than the Downtown Burbank station, and the airport parking shuttle fleet will pick you up more quickly than any connection available at the Downtown Station. In short, you will reach the airport more quickly and with less complication than if you depend on connecting with a northbound Ventura County line train in Downtown Burbank. Those are the immediate benefits the day the stop opens.

As for the replacement terminal, it is still many years away. The airport estimates a 2021 opening at the very soonest. Lots of information is available on or the City of Burbank website There are two shuttle options to the airport from the Downtown station: BurbankBus, operated by the City of Burbank, and an airport-provided arrangement to take a SuperShuttle. The City is the proper source for information about BurbankBus, but the service is well-established and provides a needed link to the airport area, regardless of whether the new Metrolink station opens or not. The airport arrangement with SuperShuttle has been in place over two years, No changes are planned. The last question about the people mover and bridge from the Bob Hope Airport Train Station makes a judgement that these facilities will be obsolete once a new terminal is in place. They will not be obsolete; they will be a permanent feature of the airport with value for decades to come. The whole goal is to provide enhanced public transit access to the airport, and Burbank Airport is the only airport in Southern California that will have two direct stops by trains. That's why Metro and Caltrans are making multimillion dollar investments at Burbank. Burbank is years ahead of the game. At such time as a replacement terminal is finally built, the south end of the airport, including remote parking and rental cars, will still be a center of activity for people arriving and departing the airport by rail, bus, rental car and private vehicle. The bridge will provide true direct train to plane connection, and the moving walkway will still provide valuable conveyance to pick-up and drop-off points for the intra-airport transportation of the future. --edited.

cj64: Posted: February 12, 2014 7:59 a.m.

vgbur, since you are a part of this plan pleas answer the following questions.

1. How many people on the AV line would be using this stop?
2. How much "time savings" is a stop "alot closer" going to provide?
Providing a savings of 10 minutes for a thousand people a year does not
justify spending Millions.
3. How much is this "extra" station going to cost?
4. How much is going to cost to update all schedules, maps, fares, etc
to include the "new station".
4. Did the recent raise in Metro fares pay for this new station?
5. Is the AV line time from Santa Clarita to Union Station going to increase because of this additional stop? If it takes an extra 5 minues for these people, you are making it inconvenient for hundres of thousands of people who use the AV line to Union Station.

It seems that the people running the show (Antonovich and McLean) do not have a good handle on the costs/returns of the project. They spend alot of taxpayer money (its not their own), and there are small returns, other than a marketing blurb: YOU CAN NOW GET FROM SANTA CLARITA TO BURBANK AIRPORT!

How many people are using the AV line to the Burbank Metrolink Station, and are COMPLAINING that it takes an extra 10 minutes to go to that airport?

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