Metrolink to Double Antelope Valley Line Sunday Service

Metrolink Antelope Valley train waiting at Union Station.

Metrolink Antelope Valley train waiting at Union Station.

Twice as many Metrolink trains will provide Sunday service on the Antelope Valley line beginning Aug. 17 with an increase from six to 12 trains, officials of the regional commuter rail service announced today. The service enhancement is designed to improve connectivity with trains going to and from Orange, San Bernardino and San Diego counties. The additional service is funded by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro).

“Doubling the number of Sunday trains on the Antelope Valley Line is in response to the growth in ridership of Metrolink service,” said Metrolink CEO Michael DePallo. “Passengers will be able to easily transfer at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles to their destinations in Orange, San Bernardino and San Diego counties and get back on convenient schedules.”

Currently, Metrolink services the Antelope Valley line with 12 trains on Saturday and six on Sunday. Starting Aug. 17, there will be three morning departures and three in the afternoon from the Antelope Valley with all trips ending at Union Station. There will be six departures from Union Station on the Antelope Valley Line with two in the morning and four in the afternoon and evening.

The schedule change on Saturday and the expansion of the Sunday service will allow passengers transferring to and from Amtrak, and Metrolink’s Orange County or San Bernardino lines reduce wait times and expand connectivity.

Learn more about Metrolink schedules and fares at or call (800) 371-5465 (LINK).


Categories: Transportation News

22 replies

  1. @UCLA grad,

    I don’t ride Metrolink often, but the few times I’ve riden Metrolink, LEOs (sheriff deputies?) walked aisles checking tickets.

    I’ve seen only one individual being cited for fare evasion. She appeared a transient from the IE heading to Union Station. She was carrying a bunch of travel bags, so she didn’t seem like a regular rider.

  2. Metro funding Metrolink helps Metro in the long term because people who would come into Downtown LA using Metrolink will then use Metro to get around LA.

    But I agree, Metro should be asking Metrolink to do in exchange for these funds like forcing Metrolink to get onboard with moving to TAP. I mean come on, we’re living in 2013 already and it’s pitiful that we’re so far behind the rest of the world when it comes to having one single card to pay for transit across the Southland. The paper ticket TAP card just adds to more confusion for the riders to figure out how to navigate the entire system.

    Is it really that difficult for everyone to come together and just agree to use TAP for everything?

  3. Ricky,

    What makes you think people are actually buying Metrolink tickets to ride Metrolink trains to begin with? People aren’t honest, that’s why the rest of the world figured out to use a closed, gated system.

  4. Erik,

    Metro is now moving to faregates and we did not have a gated system from Day One. And it’s working flawlessly despite your concerns that it will be the end of the world and will create this chaotic mess.

    Indeed, Metrolink ridership numbers will keep growing as more people turn to transit. Yes it’s a good thing.

    But with more people using transit comes with more problems. Who’s to say Metrolink will not face the same problems like Metro had with unenforceable fare evasion as ridership numbers increased?

    In a hypothetical situation where all 10 million residents in LA County had to rely on Metrolink one way or the other, do you think it’s going to be possible to run Metrolink under a non-gated system and rely solely on saturation with labor costly fare inspectors?

    Metrolink can go the same route as well – automate fare checks with fare gates. It’s bound to happen. But I’m sure you’ll be against that idea.

  5. In my personal opinion as a seventeen (17) year rider on the Antelope Valley Line, I couldn’t disagree with this decision more. The parking lots (in my area of Santa Clarita/Newhall) are empty on the weekends so I would bet that these trains will be well under capacity to be profitable.
    Secondly, weekday passengers should be afforded the option of more frequent service during peak hours — many passengers are coming in from as far out as Palmdale/Lancaster and having one train per hour in the 6, 7, 8 and 9 o’clock hours isn’t ideal.
    More weekday service would help with those who connect with the Beeline or studio shuttles in Burbank and Glendale as well.

  6. Atheistically Yours,

    Have you considered that in many countries around the world, the scooter is the most popular way to get around? Have you considered the rationale for that?

    Take for example, Taipei, Taiwan. They have a really great mass transit system. The Taipei Metro makes a profit, an incredible farebox recovery ratio of over 110%, something that US transit agencies are incapable of achieving.

    Yet, at the same time, a vast majority of people in Taipei rides scooters.

    So Taipei has an excellent Metro and bus system. Their mass transit is profitable and is capable of being run on their own money. But yet a large amount of Taiwanese travel by scooter. Why is that?

    So let’s do the math instead of brushing it off jsut by saying “it probably IS!” You maybe surprised if you do the math.

    I travel around 10 miles one-way to work on my scooter. My scooter averages 100 MPG depending on my driving habits. I do the 20 mi roundtrip five days a week.

    The scooter, unlike cars, is only capable of holding a gallon fuel. But that one gallon is able to get me 100 miles because scooters have a smaller engine and it weighs much less than a car. That’s why scooters are so fuel efficient.

    The price of gas at any gas station in the US is always measured in dollars per gallon. So if you see $4.29 at a Shell or Chevron gas station, it means that a gallon of gas will cost $4.29.

    So let’s put this all together:

    I travel 20 miles each day, five times a week
    20 x 5 = 100 miles per week

    The scooter gets 100 miles per gallon, exactly what I need for the entire week and the scooter’s gas tank holds 1 gallon of gas. Therefore, I need 1 gallon of gas every week.

    The cost of gas is measured in dollars per gallon
    The average price of gas is around $4.00/gal right now. So in order to fill up the tank of my scooter (remember only one gallon tank), the gas cost is $4.00.

    $4.00 a week. Times four weeks for a month. $16.00 a month.

    $16 is A LOT cheaper than $75 for a monthly bus pass.

    In order for me to even consider taking the bus over the scooter, gas prices has to reach $18.75/gal ($75/4)

    So I know you’re going to say what about insurance? Insurance is $100 a year. Yes, insurance is that cheap for motorcycles. Per month, that’s only $8.30 extra.

    $16 a month in gas + $8.30 a month in insurance = $24.30

    Still cheaper than $75 a month for a bus pass.

    Now you’re going to say what about maintenance. Maintenance on a scooter is so easy and cheap. All a scooter is a bicycle that runs on gas. You can find youtube videos on how to do maintenance on your scooter. SO let’s say it costs another $100 a year for scooter maintenance. Still only additional $8.30 a month

    $16 a month in gas + $8.30 a month in insurance + $8.30 for maintenance = $32.60

    Still cheaper than $75 a month for a bus pass. In fact, even with gas, insurance and maintenance it’s still more than 50% cheaper than a monthly bus pass.

    Do the math. If you don’t have a need to go that far and if you’re like me who only needs to get around a 10 mile radius, the scooter, even with gas, insurance, and maintenance comes out far cheaper than taking the bus.

  7. In addition to automatic passenger counters calwatch mentioned… Metrolink also has the benefit of variable pricing. The TVM’s are calculating the fare from station to station like say… Santa Clarita to Glendale. Based on sales… you get a very good picture of where passengers are boarding and where they say they’ll exit the trains.

  8. LAX Frequent Flyer:

    BART has always had faregates (and staffed stations) from Day One.
    Neither BART, Muni nor any of the other transit operators in the Bay Area set up the Translink/Clipper Card. It was done by the MTC, independently. Round Tables help get things done.
    An Electric Subway/Regional (and the closest thing to an S-bahn in North America) train like BART, built from scratch is quite a differnt beastie from Diesel loco-hauled Commuter Rail on existing frieght tracks like Metrolink is. Turnstiles at Fullerton station? Good Luck with that!

  9. If Metro is giving funding to Metrolink, shouldn’t Metro have the upper hand in deals to make Metrolink move to TAP? A lot of things would go smoother if everyone was under the TAP system.

    Just look at how NorCal got their act together. Everybody there, MUNI, Caltrain, BART, all different agencies operating under different fare structures, gates or no gates, flat rate or distance rate, run smoothly on just one card – the ClipperCard.

    And don’t tell me it’s impossible to do under TAP. ClipperCard uses the same Cubic technology as we do. It shouldn’t be difficult to get a single, unified fare structure in place for the whole SoCal region standardized to TAP.

  10. Metrolink has decent numbers with conductor counts and automatic passenger counters on its cars. While it may not be able to associate Passenger A with a particular origin and destination the numbers it has are good enough for accurately identifying the ins and outs of each stop, as posted on the Metrolink web site.

    And Metrolink service to the AV is the only public transit out there north of Santa Clarita on the weekends. This is a very necessary service to the 400,000 people that live in the AV.

  11. What about the 91 Line getting weekend trains for Angel/Dodger games?!

  12. rebel049,

    I doubt we’ll ever get true ridership numbers on Metrolink. It will be solely based on the number of tickets sold. And considering people who hold Metrolink passes, it will be vague guesstimate at best.

    Everything is related. You can’t get numbers without investing in technology.

    Metrolink has not invested in technology like TAP, installing gates, running a statistical analysis database for every TAP-in, and in the case of Metrolink being on a variable rate fare, it’ll also need a TAP out too.

    Compare Metrolink to BART up in the Bay Area. BART invested in technology by working together with all the Bay Area transit agencies so that everyone is all on the same page and operating under the same ClipperCard system. BART installed gates and they do TAP-in and TAP-out because BART is on a distance rate just like Metrolink. And BART is able to provide true ridership numbers, for every rider that taps-in/taps-out their ClipperCard or swipes in/swipes out their paper tickets at each boarding and disembarking at each BART station.

    You skimp on technology, you skimp on everything.

  13. Michi, Ventura County weekend service would need funding from VCTC (Ventura County Transportation Commission). As that county has no dedicated sales tax for transportation they are stressed as it is funding the peak hour weekday services it already subsidizes.

    rebel049, Metrolink posts some stats on its website

    Atheistically Yours, the funds for Metrolink from Metro are dedicated monies set aside as part of the various sales taxes (Props A and C and Maesure R) not eligible for bus operations.

    • Given the continuous MTA bus line reductions, and the REFUSAL of the MTA to do any recent bus line “expansions” (especially in the SGV!), which “monies” ARE AVAILABLE for bus operations?

  14. Atheistically Yours,

    Do what I did and buy yourself a scooter. Rather than expecting government to help you, you need to help yourself by saying “I don’t need Metro, I can look at alternatives.”

    Just do the math. The bus costs $75 a month x infinity so long as you keep being chained yourself to Metro, with even no guarantee that it’ll stay at $75 a month either.

    Let’s say you’re thirty right now. What are you going to do, keep spending $75 every month for the next 30 more years? What if bus passes go up to $100 a month? You’ll end up throwing away over $27,000 or more if cost of bus passes rise if you keep yourself reliant on the bus.

    At a certain point, you might as well just say, screw it, I’ll just by a scooter for under $2,000 and go where ever I want, whenever I want. Scooters get great gas mileage and I betcha that depending on how far you need to go to do your stuff, cost of getting a Class M1/M2 license and the cost owning a 100 MPG scooter, maintenance, insurance, gas, all included still come out cheaper than wasting $27,000 over the course of 30 years riding Metro. And that $27,000 figure is based on Metro monthly passes remaining at $75 a month, which there is no way that’s gonna happen.

    • If the cost of gasoline to put in a “scooter” is OVER $75.00 a month (and it probably IS!), then a “scooter” is NOT “cost effective”! While MTA bus riding sucks, and MTA bus line support by the MTA is EVEN WORSE, it still comes out to be cheaper then the cost of gasoline, maintenance, registration, insurance, and even the initial purchase of, a “scooter”.

  15. There is Michi, but it is operated by Amtrak/Caltrans. All that would be needed is a coordinated fare system, with fares lowered to Metrolink levels (honor the day pass too) for travel between Oxnard and LAUS. If ridership became overwhelming (and that’s a bad thing?) then justification would exists to add actual Metrolink trains, and a small surcharge could be added to those wanting to ride Surfliners on Metrolink tickets.

  16. Is there any way of being able to get ridership numbers for Metrolink and it’s lines? Metro does a much better job of providing ridership numbers for it’s services.

  17. WHY is the MTA funding trains for METROLINK (an entirely different agency!), when they won’t even provide more, DESPERATLEY NEEDED FUNDING, FOR BUS SERVICE? PATHETIC DISCRIMINATION AGAINST MTA BUS RIDERS IN ACTION!