MOBILITY ACADEMY Mass Transit: Light Rail, Buses, and Subway

February 5, 2019 7:06 am

On Wednesday March 30, the San Fernando Valley Council of Governments (SFVCOG) Mobility Academy continued its series, this time focusing in on “Mass Transit: Light Rail, Buses, and Subway.”

The meeting, held at the North Hollywood Amelia Earhart Regional Library, presented different outlooks on the Valley’s current mass transportation landscape. Scott Paige from Metro gave a history of mass transit starting with the early bus services from the first half of the 20th Century to current numbers on riders of the Orange Line. David Kriske from the City of Burbank shared a local operator’s perspective using Burbank Bus as a case study. Cliff Henke of WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff spoke on Bus Rapid Transit as a mode, touching on costs and capacity as it compares to other modes. Each also gave a breakdown of the benefits of the current transportation available in the area, how new projects and plans can be implemented, and what to consider when expansion is on the horizon.

After informative presentations interlaced with a lively set of questions from the attendees, the session switched gears placing our participants into the developers seats. The Academy members broke into small teams where they weighed a number of new and proposed plans to improve the East Valley Corridor. They discussed the pros and cons of each option by reviewing maps, associated costs, and local issues; and as a group, they worked to come to a consensus of what would be a reasonable option.

To close out the session, the class was invited to take a mini walking field trip to the North Hollywood Metro Red Line and Orange Line stops to understand the culture of riding these lines and the mass amounts of pedestrians and riders that rely on these means of transportation.

The Mobility Academy is a five-session initiative examining mobility issues in the San Fernando Valley COG region in order to create a deeper understanding of regional transportation priorities. Attendees were invited to attend by each of the COG board members, and each session covers a different topic.

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