Commuting in and out of the Santa Clarita Valley will be getting a little bit easier, with Supervisor Kathryn Barger’s announcement Thursday of expanded local Metro train routes on the Antelope Valley Line.
County officials, including Barger, who represents the 5th District and sits on Metro’s governing board of directors, said the calls for increased service are something the county has been aware of and waiting for the right opportunity to address.
“Since the outset of the pandemic, we’ve been keeping a close eye on Metrolink ridership recovery and have found there is demand for service that we historically haven’t provided,” Barger wrote in an email statement Thursday. “So, when the opportunity presented itself, I seized the moment to both bring back pre-pandemic service levels and advance how we serve the needs of our previous, current and future riders.”
The additions approved by L.A. Metro Board of Directors on Thursday include four additional trains running in each direction during the week at night, and six additional trains running in each direction on the weekend, according to a city of Santa Clarita news release that also announced the changes.
“These proposed changes are something Metrolink riders have been requesting for a long time,” said Santa Clarita City Councilwoman Marsha McLean, who’s been a transportation advocate, in particular for expanded rail service, for years.
She called the additions amazing, but she added the city hasn’t gotten everything it’s asked for, and she intends to keep lobbying until it does.
One missing component in the new additions, she said, is more weekend night service.
“You just kind of have to keep at it and to keep at it and to keep at it until they finally hear you,” she said.
The announcement of expanded service also comes as the city prepares to open its new station at Vista Canyon next month, which is also being added to the schedule.
The new schedule will go into effect on Oct. 23, the same day that the new Vista Canyon Metrolink Station begins service, according to city officials.
The full schedule is available at MetrolinkTrains.com/Schedules.