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Light Rail Transit (LRT) is coming to the heart of the San Fernando Valley. This new LRT project will provide connections to key destinations and greater opportunities for transit users to connect to the growing transit network in the San Fernando Valley.

About the Light Rail Transit Project

The alignment will include 14 at-grade stations with an end-to-end travel time of 31 minutes, and daily boardings that are anticipated to exceed 30,000 by the year 2040. Currently, buses operating on Van Nuys Blvd are the second busiest in the Valley (second only to the Metro G Line { Orange } ) and the seventh highest in the Metro system. Stations will be strategically located near Metro Local and Rapid east/west bus service to enable convenient connections.

Project History

In June 2018, Metro’s Board of Directors chose Light Rail Transit (LRT) as the preferred alternative for the East San Fernando Valley Transit Corridor Project (Project). Once opened, this LRT Project will extend north from the Van Nuys Metro G Line (Orange) station, to the Sylmar/San Fernando Metrolink Station, a total of 9.2 miles. $1.3 billion has been identified for the project, most coming from local Measure M, Measure R and State gas tax funds. Once in place, light rail trains will operate in the median of Van Nuys Blvd for 6.7 miles to San Fernando Road. From San Fernando Road, the trains will transition onto the existing railroad right-of-way adjacent to San Fernando Road, which it will share with Metrolink for 2.5 miles to the Sylmar/San Fernando Metrolink Station.

Environmental Process

The Project’s Final Environmental Impact Report ( FEIR ) was circulated for review in Fall 2020. At its December 3, 2020 meeting the Board certified, in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the Project’s Final Environmental Impact Report ( FEIR ), which included an option to construct the Project in phases.  At that meeting the Board was informed of concerns received from the Southern California Regional Rail Authority ( SCRRA or Metrolink) and the City of San Fernando related to the shared railroad right-of-way portion of the Project alignment.  The SCRRA and City of San Fernando raised concern that the FEIR assumed one shared Metrolink/Union Pacific Railroad ( UPRR ) set of tracks and two sets of light rail transit (LRT) tracks would cross five signalized intersections in the cities of Los Angeles and San Fernando.

In response, t he Metro Board instructed staff to move forward with the first phase of the Project, which will be in the median of Van Nuys Boulevard and travel 6.7-mile from the Metro G Line (Orange Line), north to the intersection of Van Nuys Boulevard and San Fernando Road.  Building the line in segments would give Metro the flexibility to keep the project on schedule for early construction activities in the 6.7-mile Van Nuys Bl portion, known as the Initial Operating Segment (IOS). Other Metro projects have been built in phases, including the B Line (Red), D Line (Purple) and G Line (Orange). Metro is committed to constructing the full 9.2-mile ESFV Light Rail Transit Project.

Additionally, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has granted the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) a Record of Decision (ROD) for its East San Fernando Valley Light Rail Transit Project, officially certifying that the project has satisfied all federal guidelines for environmental analysis and makes it eligible for federal funding opportunities. The FTA’s action allows Metro to seek funding in the federal pipeline for the final design and construction of the 9.2-mile project . Th e Board action and adoption of the ROD enables Metro staff to initiate right-of-way acquisition and utility relocation for the Project’s initial 6.7 miles and keep the first phase of the Project on schedule for a 2028 revenue operations date.  The first 6.7 miles of the alignment is inclusive of the maintenance and storage facility.

Schedule Update

In August 2019, Metro awarded, Gannett Fleming, a contract to provide engineering design and oversight services for the ESFVTC project. The scope of work includes Advancing the Design, Design Build (DB) Bid Support and Design Services during Construction ( DSDC ). Currently, Gannett Fleming has advanced the 5% level design drawings developed during the Draft Environmental Impact Statement / Environmental Impact Report ( DEIS /EIR) to a 30% / 60% level design in preparation for a Design Build contract. Metro will begin the procurement process for a Design Build contract in 2021 as well as initiate Right-of-Way acquisitions and Utility Relocations.