Contact: Sam Gutierrez
Phone: 626.960.4011 ext. 460
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 26, 2018
L.A. METRO GRANT FUNDS HELP CITY OF BALDWIN PARK CLOSE TRANSIT GAP BETWEEN METROLINK STATION AND LOCAL DESTINATIONS
CITY OF BALDWIN PARK WILL HOST A RIBBON CUTTING CEREMONY AND INAUGURAL RIDE TO LAUNCH ITS NEW COMMUTER CONNECTOR EXPRESS LINE SERVICE
BALDWIN PARK, CA – October 26 - On Saturday, October 27, 2018, The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) and the City of Baldwin Park, in collaboration with Kaiser Permanent Baldwin Park Medical Center, will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony and community event to launch the new Commuter Connector Express Line. The event will be hosted at Baldwin Park City Hall and Arts and Recreation Center (ARC) located at 14403 Pacific Ave., Baldwin Park, CA 91706 from 10 a.m. to noon and will feature VIP speakers, children’s activities, a ribbon-cutting photo opportunity and free rides on the trolley-style bus.
The City of Baldwin Park received grant funding from the 2013 Metro Express Lanes Net Toll Revenue Reinvestment grant program to create an express bus or shuttle service. The new service will help increase use of public transportation and reduce the effects of greenhouse gases (GHGs).
Metro’s Net Toll Revenue program seeks to increase mobility and ridership through projects that enhance transit operations, transportation demand management, transportation systems management, active transportation, and capital investments along the 1-10 and 1-110 freeways.
“Our ExpressLanes project has been a great success in improving mobility for those commuting along these critically important freeway corridors,” said Phillip A. Washington, Metro CEO. “We are conscientiously reinvesting some of our toll revenues into these corridors to fund new services like the Commuter Connector Express Line that improve travel times and help reduce congestion.”
Until now, the City did not have a transit route linking City Hall and the Metrolink station to the area’s large employers and retail outlets just north and south of the 1-10 Freeway, which includes Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center, Target, United Parcel Service’s (UPS) regional distribution center, In-n-Out Burger’s corporate headquarters and distribution center, Nichols Lumber and two regional shopping centers (major tenants include Target, Party City, Smart & Final, Food 4 Less, Office Max).
“The Commuter Connector Express Line project is the culmination of our efforts to achieve the goal of encouraging increased use of public transportation as outlined in the City’s General Plan,” stated Baldwin Park Mayor, Manuel Lozano. “Closing this First / Last-mile gap in our local transit system will increase utilization of the Metrolink system by residents, commuters and visitors.”
Demand for this project came from a 2017 community assessment conducted by the City and solicited input from community members, Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center, and residents in the city of Baldwin Park. In addition to soliciting transit project ideas, the assessment process was used to measure the potential ridership should a transit project come to fruition. A total of 336 surveys were collected and analyzed and found that 70% of respondents who travel regularly to Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center indicated said they would willingly use public transportation if there were available. Furthermore, 85% of all respondents expressed interest in utilizing the proposed Express Line.
“This project was a project that our residents advocated for and, as a city leader, I am excited and proud that we have been able to bring this project to fruition,” stated City of Baldwin Park Mayor, Manuel Lozano. “Residents, commuters and visitors to Baldwin Park will be able to travel to many key destinations and employment centers throughout the city with greater ease.”
As a result, the city purchased two CNG fueled trolley-style buses to provide this new transit service that will operate south and northbound along Baldwin Park Boulevard between the northern terminus at the Metrolink Baldwin Park Station and the southern terminus near Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center and United Parcel Service. This new route will feature six rush hour stops in each direction and seven midday stops weekdays from 6:20 AM to 7:41 PM to capture the most ridership.
“The new Commuter Connector Express Line is much needed and will benefit our employees and members alike,” stated Kaiser Permanente Medical Center Senior Vice President and Area Manager, Maggie Pierce. “We will promote this new transit service through our employee and member communications to encourage regular use with the goals to decrease motorized vehicle traffic in the community and alleviate parking issues here at the medical center.”
The public is invited to attend the ribbon-cutting ceremony and launch event which will include remarks from Metro, City of Baldwin Park and Kaiser Permanente dignitaries. Following the ribbon-cutting ceremony, attendees will get a preview on the new Commuter Connector Express Line trolley-style buses and receive free rides from the Art and Recreation Center to Kaiser Permanente for refreshments, kids fall arts and crafts, pumpkin giveaway and Express Line Tote bag giveaway for first 50 people to arrive at event.
For more information about the Express Line project or Ribbon Cutting Ceremony, please contact Sam Gutierrez, Director of Public Works, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 626.960.4011 ext. 460.