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Metro Announces Start Date For Gold Line Expansion From Pasadena To Azusa

Choo choo! (Photo by Chris via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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It's almost go-time! The Metro Gold Line's Foothill Expansion, which includes stops stops in Arcadia and Azusa, will be opening next March.

Metro CEO Phil Washington announced today that the expansion will open on March 5, 2016. This will service cities near the San Gabriel Mountains, an 11.5-mile extension from the already existing Sierra Madre Villa Station in Pasadena to the Azusa/Glendora border, according to Metro's blog, The Source.

The six new stations will be in downtown Arcadia, Monrovia, Duarte/City of Hope, Irwindale, downtown Azusa and Azusa Pacific University/Citrus College Station in Azusa. You might be asking, "Can I take the train to Din Tai Fung?" Well, the Arcadia stop is just a couple of miles away from the famed Taiwanese soup dumplings hotspot, so it's doable. That goes for the Santa Anita Mall and Santa Anita Park as well.

Here's a map of the new stops. Click here for a larger version.

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The Foothill Expansion on Metro's Gold Line (via The Source)
Another cool thing about the stops is that there will be parking lots at each of the new stations, ranging from 125 to 350 spots, depending on the locations.

"The opening of the Metro Gold Line Foothill Extension will bring Metro Rail to new San Gabriel Valley communities, and provide a relief valve for the increasingly congested 210 freeway," LA County Supervisor and Metro Board Chair Mark Ridley-Thomas said in The Source. "Its opening is a significant milestone: Metro is delivering on its promise to lead a transit revolution. Work is well underway to add four additional rail lines and a total of 32 new miles of service to L.A. County’s rail system in the coming years."

The $957-million expansion project is the first Metro Rail project to be completed through funding from Measure R, which was a half-cent sales tax increase approved by L.A. County voters in 2008. The construction for this Foothill Expansion began in 2010 and finished about a month ago, the L.A. Times reports.

During the press conference today, Mayor Eric Garcetti said, "I completely support the Gold Line going further east. Getting out to Claremont is incredibly important to me."