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Metrolink's New CEO Wants to Make Commuter Rail an Experience that will 'Wow' You

Metrolink CEO John Fenton speaks at a Transit Coalition Meeting at Phillippe's in Chinatown | Photo by Zach Behrens/LAist
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Metrolink's new CEO, John Fenton, is not a politician. He's a businessman to the core. And one with standards: efficiency, safety, the environment and serving people. Sure, he has vision for the commuter rail line, such as extending night service so people can use the train after Dodgers and Angeles games, but he also has a firm grasp of the economic reality behind those fun ideas -- every government agency is clamping down on spending.

So what did the no-nonsense Fenton do within the first few days on the job? He instituted a simple policy that will save the agency an estimated $3 to $4 million a year. He noticed that engineers let trains run idle between routes, which to him was a big waste of money, and not to mention the pollution. So a new shut down policy was put in place and within two weeks, 93,000 gallons of gas were saved. "That's real money," he told a crowd at the Transit Coalition's monthly meeting on Tuesday night. "It's financially responsible and environmentally responsible."