Rail Maintenance and Operations Facilities
What are rail yards?
Rail yards are sites with maintenance and storage facilities for cleaning, maintaining, and repairing rail lines and rail cars. These sites are always located near the line they serve, with a direct rail connection so the line can be accessed easily and rail cars can be stored off the main operating tracks. While you’ll often find Metro Rail yards in industrial areas, some are located next to commercial areas or residential communities.
Many types of employees work at Metro Rail yards, from train operators and maintenance workers to supervisors and security personnel. These sites also include office space for rail operations administrative and communications support.
How are rail yards planned and designed?
Metro evaluates potential rail yards during the environmental review process for new rail lines. This work involves analyzing one or more sites to determine how well they meet the operational needs of the project. The evaluation looks at impacts both during construction of the new facility, as well as its planned operations.
LA County is well developed with little vacant land. This lack of open space means that Metro likely needs to acquire property when building or expanding a rail yard.
When Metro needs to purchase land, the property acquisition is governed by federal and state law that requires the agency to provide just compensation to the property owner. Please see our Property Acquisition fact sheet for more information on this process.
Design Factors Considered
Metro strives to develop and design new rail yards that meet our operational needs and fit into the community to the best extent possible. We also strive to be an environmental leader and build new facilities to the highest sustainability standards. This can include incorporating design elements and systems that help reduce emissions, waste and the use of water and electricity.