THE magazine of railroading

SEARCH TRAINSMAG.COM

Enter keywords or a search phrase below:

L.A. Metro Gold Line Foothill Extension Updates

30010 views
266 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 2:58 PM

A Crossing Gates Show

California Ave.

Monrovia, CA

Part “A” (of A-D)

In Monrovia, on the north-south California Ave. grade crossing at the cross street Duarte Road, the Gold Line Foothill Extension crossing gates put on quite a show.   With catenary overhead, the crossing gates start clanging, red lights flash, and gates come down.

If one was to be right next to the tracks and look both ways, one would see no train approaching.  The gates stay down.  And stay down.  And stay down.  Finally, the gray Gold Line cars come zooming by!

But, after the inbound cars go by, the gates stay down!  And stay down.  And stay down.  Finally, an outbound light rail set zooms by in lowering light, so low light that the speedy train set is semi-blurred.

The light is being so lacking the camera captures a blurred number, and the new yellow decorated set remains unidentified.

Continued in Part B

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 3:03 PM

A Crossing Gates Show

California Ave.

Monrovia, CA

Part “B” (of A-D)

The gates go up and things are quiet.  Then, they start clanging again, and arms come down, all at a different timing sequence.

Above, there are the (1) normal vehicle traffic flow gates, (2) pedestrian gates, and (3) reverse traffic flow gates that come down last.

And another Gold Line train zooms by.

Earlier, with a bit better light, the pattern was seen often.

  

Continued in Part C

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 3:07 PM

A Crossing Gates Show

California Ave.

Monrovia, CA

Part “C” (of A-D)

On the south side of the tracks, another set comes, heading outbound.

A signal is seen, displaying green.

Back on the north side of the tracks, an inbound soon comes.

Continued in Part D

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 3:16 PM

A Crossing Gates Show

California Ave.

Monrovia, CA

Part “D” (of A-D)

And, on and on the show goes.  Red, green, red, green, and …

That signal goes to red when pasted, and back to green when the light rail set gets sufficiently ahead.  Red, green, red, green … The middle light, assumedly yellow, is never seen.

There are signals the other way, east, too.

When first arriving, an eye-catching signaled track caught the eye, with painted lines as if an extension of the track.

Assumedly, that is for car delivery, possibly trucked to the site, lined up with the track, and lowered unto it.  It wouldn’t seem that signal would be used very much ..

Some signals are used often, other hardly used.  And, the crossing gates get flexed super often.  Great show at California Ave. in Monrovia!

This will conclude the series.

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: Altadena, CA
  • 294 posts
Posted by 081552 on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 4:56 PM

The extension is doing well. Station at Irwindale Avenue has a full parking lot during the week. There is nothing around the station other than industrial buildings and the Miller Brewery.

I rode the Gold Line home to Pasadena last Sunday after the Dodger game and the trains were filled.

  • Member since
    July, 2009
  • From: SW Los Angeles county
  • 892 posts
Posted by MikeF90 on Monday, October 03, 2016 8:28 PM

K.P. will be glad to know that the Citrus Avenue extension in Glendora is now open:

http://www.citruscollege.edu/pio/NewsRoom/Pages/default.aspx

http://www.sgvtribune.com/general-news/20160919/you-can-finally-walk-bike-or-drive-directly-to-and-from-the-gold-line-station-near-apu-citrus-college

http://www.dailybulletin.com/general-news/20160930/heres-a-glimpse-of-what-the-gold-line-train-from-glendora-to-montclair-will-look-like

Much more direct access from I-210 to the APU/Citrus College station and parking lot is now possible.

UPDATE - Looking forward a little too far in the future perhaps, the new Ontario Airport authority is set to finalize transfer of the airport from LAWA for November 1:

http://www.dailybulletin.com/business/20161003/ontario-airport-authority-gears-up-for-takeover?source=most_viewed

If the new authority can get passenger traffic to grow (hopefully to level off LAX) light rail might be extended to ONT eventually. K.P.'s grandkids will have to cover that ....

Map links ---> Sunset Route overview, SoCal metro, Yuma sub, Gila sub, east of Tucson

mvs
  • Member since
    August, 2008
  • 216 posts
Posted by mvs on Wednesday, October 05, 2016 1:05 PM

MikeF90
UPDATE - Looking forward a little too far in the future perhaps, the new Ontario Airport authority is set to finalize transfer of the airport from LAWA for November 1:

http://www.dailybulletin.com/business/20161003/ontario-airport-authority-gears-up-for-takeover?source=most_viewed

If the new authority can get passenger traffic to grow (hopefully to level off LAX) light rail might be extended to ONT eventually. K.P.'s grandkids will have to cover that ....

I'm glad that ONT is returning to local control.  I live close to BUR, and prefer to fly out of BUR, but I'll make the drive to ONT before I set foot at LAX.

 

As for the Gold Line Phase 2B to Montclair... at what point does the BNSF service to the Miller Brewing in Irwindale get "rerouted" via Metrolink to Azusa, then up the old SP branch?  It seems silly to have the extra right-of-way for freight bypass.

  • Member since
    July, 2009
  • From: SW Los Angeles county
  • 892 posts
Posted by MikeF90 on Wednesday, October 05, 2016 3:16 PM

mvs
As for the Gold Line Phase 2B to Montclair... at what point does the BNSF service to the Miller Brewing in Irwindale get "rerouted" via Metrolink to Azusa, then up the old SP branch? It seems silly to have the extra right-of-way for freight bypass.

If I understand you correctly, BNSF will use the remainder of their line (now the MLNK Pasadena sub) where it splits off at CP Cambridge (near Cambridge Ave in Claremont). That CP is near where the ex-PE and ex-ATSF lines crossed. BNSF does not and will not use the UP branch that runs by the east edge of the Miller-Coors plant in Irwindale.

Apparently the ex-ATSF ROW through downtown Claremont is wide enough to support two LR tracks and two Metrolink tracks. Heck, BNSF squeezed three tracks onto their narrow (50 ft?) ROW in Fullerton.

 

Map links ---> Sunset Route overview, SoCal metro, Yuma sub, Gila sub, east of Tucson

  • Member since
    October, 2016
  • 7 posts
Posted by jmonier on Thursday, October 06, 2016 8:33 AM
"As for the Gold Line Phase 2B to Montclair... at what point does the BNSF service to the Miller Brewing in Irwindale get "rerouted" via Metrolink to Azusa, then up the old SP branch? It seems silly to have the extra right-of-way for freight bypass." A third track was constructed between Azuza and the brewery for exclusive BNSF use. Presumably that would also be done on the future extension.
mvs
  • Member since
    August, 2008
  • 216 posts
Posted by mvs on Thursday, October 06, 2016 1:14 PM

Mike and JR, you two both are correct -- I just think, looking back, that was a wasted effort.

(In other words, it would have been less expensive to have the right-of-way be exclusively Gold Line, and grant BNSF trackage rights on Metrolink westward from Pomona to Baldwin Park; then BNSF would get trackage rights on the old SP Azusa branch.)

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Wednesday, October 12, 2016 2:10 PM

About Claremont

Mention has been made that the right-of-way is wide east out of Pomona.  Rightfully so, because it just wasn’t one railroad, but two, the AT&SF and PE (SP) lines were side by side.  What baffles K.P. is the Claremont stop area.  There are TWO tracks now, with maybe room for another, for a total of three.  To have the Gold Line come through, there would have to be two more tracks, for four altogether!  But, I don’t see room for four.

https://www.google.com/maps/@34.0939285,-117.7163966,199m/data=!3m1!1e3

What are the powers that be going to do?

  • Member since
    July, 2009
  • From: SW Los Angeles county
  • 892 posts
Posted by MikeF90 on Wednesday, October 12, 2016 3:21 PM

K. P. Harrier
What are the powers that be going to do?

The latest plan (link) is to move the Metrolink platform east of College Ave and change to center platforms; the ex-AT&SF ROW is wider there and both sets of tracks can hug the edges. Away from the platforms, the freight/Metrolink tracks probably would be on 16 foot centers and the light rail less than that. Remembering the AT&SF days, I'm always amazed to see two tracks when I ride the line between those buildings in old town Pasadena.

Brain cramp update - @mvs suggested the use of the isolated UP branch to serve Miller/Coors. Since UP hates locals, they have no interest in maintaining the branch for service. If they did want to provide the service (heh heh) it would have to originate downtown (J-yard? Fourth St?) then run over the Metrolink River sub, then the Al sub to Bassett, then onto Metrolink again. Yah, sure, they'd love to do that. Bang Head

Map links ---> Sunset Route overview, SoCal metro, Yuma sub, Gila sub, east of Tucson

mvs
  • Member since
    August, 2008
  • 216 posts
Posted by mvs on Thursday, October 13, 2016 2:43 PM

MikeF90
Brain cramp update - @mvs suggested the use of the isolated UP branch to serve Miller/Coors. Since UP hates locals, they have no interest in maintaining the branch for service. If they did want to provide the service (heh heh) it would have to originate downtown (J-yard? Fourth St?) then run over the Metrolink River sub, then the Al sub to Bassett, then onto Metrolink again. Yah, sure, they'd love to do that. Bang Head

Doesn't Metrolink now own -- or at least dispatch -- the former SP branch line between Baldwin Park and Azusa?

  • Member since
    July, 2009
  • From: SW Los Angeles county
  • 892 posts
Posted by MikeF90 on Thursday, October 13, 2016 5:44 PM

mvs
Doesn't Metrolink now own -- or at least dispatch -- the former SP branch line between Baldwin Park and Azusa?

Busted! Embarrassed Looking through my APTT, it appears that SCRRA (Metrolink) Does own the branch mentioned above - now called the Azusa Industrial Lead. Surprisingly, Google Maps shows some cars next to Cactus Mat Manufacturing and Veolia in Azusa. UP has trackage rights but I've yet to find confirmation that they are using them.

Map links ---> Sunset Route overview, SoCal metro, Yuma sub, Gila sub, east of Tucson

RME
  • Member since
    March, 2016
  • 1,260 posts
Posted by RME on Friday, October 14, 2016 11:08 AM

K. P. Harrier
What are the powers that be going to do?

Go to single track with no crossovers for each line for some number of miles either side of the Claremont depot facility.

As you approach the Claremont depot on Metrolink, you have relatively high-speed switches that divert trains to the 'appropriate' platform side.  Might even make these spring switches 'handed' for right-hand running.

As you approach the Claremont depot location on the Gold Line, you go up on a flyover.  At the top, you have a similar switch arrangement to elevated platforms completely over the two ground-level tracks, or offset slightly the way the elevated roadways on the 110 Freeway were built with the island platform up the middle.  Ramps, escalators, elevators get you from one service to the other as architects may design.  Absolutely minimal ground-level footprint in the restricted ROW, and no grades more severe than Gold Line consists already have to negotiate with higher passenger loadings.

Presumably this could be repeated for any co-located stations that have the same width restriction; coming 'down' off the crossover it might be possible to effectively 'reverse' the mains in order to build a new island platform for Gold Line service relative to Metrolink where room can be found for it only on the 'wrong side' further out, or where a Metrolink island platform and a Gold Line one could be 'siamesed' in line.

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Saturday, October 15, 2016 11:47 PM

Is there a Future Gold Line for Claremont?

K.P. questions the wisdom of it, but IF (“if”) the Gold Line Foothill Extension Phase 2B is routed over the ex-Santa Fe line through Claremont, the Foothill Extension people will really have their hands full in putting a light rail line on that route, a route occupied by the two-track Metrolink operation.  It seems a whopping amount of money would need to be expended too!  Inspired by recent thread posts, K.P. visited the Metrolink line through Claremont and Montclair to see what actually is there.

As seen in the above westward looking view from the north-south College Ave., the Metrolink line passes through a super confining area.

Sometime in the next couple of weeks other photos of the area and line are hoped to be posted.

  • Member since
    July, 2009
  • From: SW Los Angeles county
  • 892 posts
Posted by MikeF90 on Sunday, October 16, 2016 1:23 AM

RME
Go to single track with no crossovers for each line for some number of miles either side of the Claremont depot facility.

IMO you really need to research this a little better before such a wordy, speculative post. Metrolink, a 'commuter' line with one hour-ish, rush hour mainly headways could deal with a short single track section.

However, LA Metro Light Rail was designed for much higher frequency requirements. System wide platforms are designed for three cars, period, so no expansion options there. Metro is testing three minute headways (!!!!) in DTLA to deal with combined Blue and Expo Line loads; this will impact the Gold Line in four years due to the Regional Connector.

Single Track light rail usually is a ineptly conceived and expensively designed and built economic tragedy, an old school nostalgic trolley, see the Washington DC Streetcar for an example of supreme wastage. Currently Bus Rapid Transit probably is the better, cheaper, more flexible solution.

Please read and browse the drawings in the above mentioned PDF link. The EIR is final. The rotund opera lady is singing. Four Tracks is a Done Deal.

Map links ---> Sunset Route overview, SoCal metro, Yuma sub, Gila sub, east of Tucson

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Sunday, October 16, 2016 12:50 PM

MikeF90 (10-16):

Great posting, Mike!  Super, really!

That final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) says it all.  There is NO speculation left.  It will save me much wasted time, as the photos taken Saturday can now be oriented properly and commented authoritatively on with the EIR in mind.  Thanks Mike!

Teaser!

The below eastward looking photo was shot from Indian Hills Blvd. in Claremont:

The present Metrolink stop (by the yellow flooring strips on each side of photo center) will be moved to by the tracks alignment shift in the photo background, according to the EIR.  The light rail Gold Line will have two-tracks pass on the photo left, going OVER Indian Hill Blvd. (camera location) while the Metrolink grade crossing (behind the camera) will remain or be moved southward slightly.

In Montclair, the community just to the east of Claremont and in the next county, according to EIR diagraming, the future Gold Line will wipe out a landmark-like transit bus wonder.

MikeF90’s linked EIR’s find gives us a whole bunch of enlightenments about the future Gold Line extension.  A post photo-report should be ready in about two weeks, or before.

Future Posting Crisis!

Reportedly, sometime in the future, the Gold Line from its SOUTHERN end will NOT go to its northern end, but rather will instead end in Santa Monica to the west!  The Blue Line, which starts in Long Beach, will continue past its present terminus in downtown Los Angeles to the Gold Line’s future extension in Montclair.  Got that?  So, will THIS thread need to be renamed the “L.A. Metro Blue Line Foothill Extension Updates”?

Take care all,

K.P.

RME
  • Member since
    March, 2016
  • 1,260 posts
Posted by RME on Sunday, October 16, 2016 2:31 PM

MikeF90
IMO you really need to research this a little better before such a wordy, speculative post.

I was responding only to the question that was raised about what could be done if there were actually 'no room available for more than two tracks' in the station area.  Naturally the 'better' answer is to provide two full tracks for the transit operation, and ideally two for Metrolink, in that area (as indeed provided in the EIR and linked drawings).

  • Member since
    December, 2007
  • From: Georgia USA SW of Atlanta
  • 7,799 posts
Posted by blue streak 1 on Thursday, October 20, 2016 4:47 PM

Downtown extension the tunnel boring machine "Angeli" parts are starting to be assembled in the tunnel pit.  This will connect blue, gold , and expo rail together.

http://www.progressiverailroading.com/passenger_rail/news/LA-Metro-lowers-piece-of-boring-machine-for-Regional-Connector-project--49845

 

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Friday, October 28, 2016 5:00 PM

The Future Four-Track Commuter Routes

Claremont-Montclair, CA

Part I (of I-VI)

The once Santa Fe “Second District” single-track Automatic Block Signaled route through Claremont and Montclair that once hosted the Super Chief is now part Metrolink’s San Gabriel Subdivision, and is part of a two-track stretch between Pomona and Montclair.

In Claremont, at Indian Hill Blvd., a westward view of Metrolink tracks in a very confining area.

Exactly how two additional Gold Line tracks can be north (right) of the two-Metrolink tracks is not clear.

Diagrams show two ground level Metrolink tracks on the south side of the right-of-way (left, above photo), with a flyover over Indian Hill Blvd. (camera location) on the north (right) side of the right-of-way.

Looking east:

Above, about a block or two in the distance, is the present Metrolink Claremont stop.

Continued in Part II

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Friday, October 28, 2016 5:06 PM

The Future Four-Track Commuter Routes

Claremont-Montclair, CA

Part II (of I-VI)

Looking east, a two-track flyover will have to be very close to the building on the upper left of the view.

Looking west again from Indian Hill Blvd., the background signal on the right is an absolute, and is where the old Santa Fe Line branches off while the Metrolink tracks (foreground) swing to the south (left) slightly and follow an alignment of the old Pacific Electric.

Looking east, south side shade coverings are seen (right of center).

Walking west from Indian Hill Blvd., to K.P.’s vehicle, an ironic twist is seen with roadway erected signage.  How can one stop on the tracks (right signs) when one can’t make a left turn (left sign)?.

Continued in Part III

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Friday, October 28, 2016 5:10 PM

The Future Four-Track Commuter Routes

Claremont-Montclair, CA

Part III (of I-VI)

A few blocks to the east, at College Ave., a westward view of the current Metrolink stop.

A south side westward view shows the tracks right-of-way to be very confining.

Looking east:

Continued in Part IV

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Friday, October 28, 2016 5:14 PM

The Future Four-Track Commuter Routes

Claremont-Montclair, CA

Part IV (of I-VI)

The CURRENT Montclair Metrolink stop is an interesting place.  Looking east with a Metrolink inbound train arriving at the stop.

West:

Above, note the high green signal in the background.

The train soon takes off west to Los Angeles.  Moments later an eastbound arrives.

Continued in Part V

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Friday, October 28, 2016 5:19 PM

The Future Four-Track Commuter Routes

Claremont-Montclair, CA

Part V (of I-VI)

The Montclair ‘more than a train stop’ is an interesting place.  It basically is a transit mall.

The buses present at photo time were from Foothill Transit.

Continued in Part VI

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • 7,349 posts
Posted by K. P. Harrier on Friday, October 28, 2016 5:27 PM

The Future Four-Track Commuter Routes

Claremont-Montclair, CA

Part VI (of I-VI)

There is a tunnel-way under the Metrolink tracks.

The Montclair stop is going to have to have radical modifications, as the two Gold Line Foothill Extension tracks will be going through HALF of the vertical zigzagging structure in the just below photo’s right background.

Above, the present Metrolink platforms are on the far right.

Omnitrans buses (western San Bernardino County) get in the act too.

An eastward oriented view for the reader as to where things are at in relation to the tracks.

It is understood the Gold Line when it reaches here from Los Angeles and Pasadena will terminate, though there are some indications efforts are in the works to extend it farther east.

This will conclude the series.

  • Member since
    July, 2009
  • From: SW Los Angeles county
  • 892 posts
Posted by MikeF90 on Tuesday, February 21, 2017 5:11 PM

Extension from Glendora to Montclair status

The Foothill Extension Construction Authority has updated their schedule based on the passage of Measure M funding and board approval:

http://www.foothillextension.org/images/uploads/2017-01-26_-_Press_Release_-_Foothill_Gold_Line_Board_Approves_New_Project_Schedule.pdf

http://www.foothillextension.org/images/uploads/2017-01-25_-_Approved_Project_Schedule.pdf

Ground breaking for utility relocation should begin this fall. The first project phase (Metrolink / freight relocation) will begin in 2020, and the second phase (light rail construction) starts in late 2021. Completion for use is estimated to be late 2025-ish.

BTW SANBAG has split into two organizations: SBCOG and SBCTA. The latter inherits oversight of transportation projects: http://www.gosbcta.com/    No sign of Montclair Gold Line station planning yet, but a placeholder for a Metrolink double tracking project exists. 

Map links ---> Sunset Route overview, SoCal metro, Yuma sub, Gila sub, east of Tucson

Join our Community!

Our community is FREE to join. To participate you must either login or register for an account.

Trains free email newsletter
NEWS » PHOTOS » VIDEOS » HOT TOPICS & MORE
GET OUR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER DELIVERED TO YOUR INBOX
Connect with us
ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER

Search the Community