LA Metro Board Approves Bus Rapid Transit Line From NH, Pasadena

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 LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The 18-mile North Hollywood to Pasadena Bus Rapid Transit project was approved today by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board of Directors, connecting the San Fernando and San Gabriel valleys.

The line, scheduled to open by 2024, will travel east-west on dedicated bus lanes from the North Hollywood Metro B (Red) Line/G (Orange) Line Station to Pasadena City College, stopping along the way in the Burbank Media District, downtown Burbank, Glendale and Eagle Rock. Metro's Board of Directors on Friday approved the project and certified the Final Environmental Impact Report.

``This is an important milestone in Metro's efforts to improve mobility for those that need it the most," said Metro Board Chair and Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis. ``Our bus riders, essential workers who kept riding our system even through the worst of the pandemic, are the ones that truly need this project. This BRT will help ensure that buses are on time and get riders to their destinations faster than ever before by providing a dedicated right of way. It is the reliability and consistency our riders need and deserve."

Metro said the BRT will provide faster and more reliable service than normal bus lines, reduce the number of vehicles on the road and improve county residents' access to jobs, education and other frequently visited areas. It will provide the same benefits as light rail, according to Metro, but with a lower cost and quicker build time.

``BRT is the first of its kind for Metro,'' said Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger, who sits on the Metro Board of Directors. ``Since it will navigate its way through multiple cities and jurisdictions, the amount of coordination that it took to develop this project was extraordinary. The future of our region's mobility will seek to replicate this level of collaboration. The BRT will maximize mobility for millions of riders for decades to come. It was worth the lift, and I commend Metro staff for their efforts.''

The $267 million project is funded by Measure M, a sales tax measure that Los Angeles County voters approved in 2016. Funding also came from Senate Bill 1 gas tax and vehicle fees. The line was supported by Streets For All, an organization that seeks to help transform Los Angeles into a more transit- and pedestrian-friendly city. Streets For All urged its supporters to call into the Metro meeting Thursday to advocate for the project's approval.

Some Eagle Rock residents and business owners, organized under the name ``Save Eagle Rock Community,'' opposed the project, claiming it would impede emergency response times and emergency vehicle access in the area. But Metro said fire trucks would be able to use the bus-only lanes.

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