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Here's How Metro Is Proposing To Fix Transportation In The Valley

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Look, I'm a Valley native. And while it's all fine and dandy that Metro is building a whole new transportation system for Los Angeles to play with, it's no secret that the good old SFV can feel kind of left out from all the fun. While the 626 got a shiny new train, the 818's single rapid-bus line faces consistent overcrowding.

Metro is well aware that El Valle de San Fernando is one of the region’s most transit under-served areas, which is why the agency has been hard at work planning the East San Fernando Valley Transit Corridor, a proposed rapid-transit bus or rail line running along Van Nuys Boulevard from Pacoima to Sherman Oaks.

This is one of the projects that would be funded if voters pass Metro's proposed ballot measure this November. A half-cent sales tax increase would mean Metro could break ground on the East SFV corridor by 2021 with scheduled completion sometime around 2028, according to Metro's blog, The Source.

Van Nuys Boulevard is one of Los Angeles’ most heavily used bus corridors, falling in line after Wilshire Boulevard and Metro’s Orange Line (also in the Valley). By building the corridor into one with dedicated infrastructure, Metro hopes to draw a large number of Valley residents and commuters out of their cars, and on to buses and trains.

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Here are the alternatives that Metro is considering specifically for Van Nuys Boulevard on Monday:

  • A light rail train, like the Expo or Gold Line, running along Van Nuys Boulevard between the Sylmar Metrolink Station and Van Nuys Boulevard Orange Line at Oxnard/Van Nuys
  • Bus rapid transit isolated from traffic with dedicated lanes and stations running either along the curb the road’s median along the same route.
  • A low-floor tram or streetcar like train operating on Van Nuys Boulevard’s median, and in mixed-lanes along San Fernando Road in the Northeast Valley.

Any of these projects would eventually connect to Metro’s Sepulveda Pass transit corridor project. In time, Metro will build a link (probably a train) between Westwood and Sherman Oaks, helping people totally eliminate the 405 freeway from their daily commute. That transit project will eventually connect to LAX, sometime long into Los Angeles’ future.

A presentation put together by Metro estimates the corridor could host just under 50,000 boardings by 2040, and would cut down down transit-travel time between Sylmar to Sherman Oaks from 49 to 29 minutes.

Anyway, here are some renderings of the different proposed alternatives: