Congressmen Howard Berman (D-Valley Village) and Brad Sherman (D-Sherman Oaks) hailed the opening of Metro Orange Lines extension from Canoga Park to Chatsworth.
The four-mile extension along Canoga Avenue features four new stations, a bikeway/pedestrian path, a park and ride lot at the Sherman Way Station, as well as additional parking at the Chatsworth Station.
The project was delivered under budget by $61.6 million and months ahead of schedule.
The Orange Line is making the daily commute for Valley residents easier, faster and more reliable, said Rep. Berman, a strong advocate of public transit in the San Fernando Valley.
The extension will enable transit riders to enjoy reduced travel times and improved connections with Metrolink and the Red Line from Chatsworth Station, he said, adding, With the extension of the Orange Line and the expected completion of the northbound 405 carpool lane next year, I am very hopeful that well see reduced congestion for commuters, and faster travel times for transit passengers.
Congressman Berman helped secure federal funding for the lines initial construction and worked to accommodate pedestrian safety concerns in the routes immediate vicinity.
Congressman Sherman (D-Sherman Oaks) marked the extension as an important milestone in improving regional connectivity and encouraging Valley commuters to use public transit.
Orange Line commuters can now travel 18 miles from Chatsworth to North Hollywood with stops at important activity centers along the route, he said. We should now focus our efforts on building a grade-separated transit system through the Sepulveda Pass connecting the San Fernando Valley with the Westside. Ultimately, we need to develop a system that can rapidly connect transit riders from the Orange Line to the Westside Subway Extension in Westwood and eventually south to LAX, he added.
Sherman has urged local transportation officials to develop alternatives to improve transit through the Sepulveda Pass, and is also working to secure federal funding to assist Metro in developing alternatives for the Sepulveda Pass Corridor project. Funding of $1 billion was allocated for this project in Measure R.
Sherman secured funding in previous federal transportation bills to assist with construction of the 14-mile Orange Line and the Warner Center Transit Hub, as well as a new entrance to Pierce College from the Winnetka Station to help students that use the busway to easily access the campus.