Gold Line expansion to Montclair is delayed at least two years

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Commuters in San Bernadino County eager to take the Gold Line into Los Angeles will have to wait a little longer than previously expected, as the 12.3 mile Gold Line extension from Glendora to Montclair will be delayed two years.

The Foothill Gold Line Construction Authority Board of Directors has approved an updated plan for the light rail line’s extension, with construction set to start in October and “substantial completion” by late 2025 or early 2026. Initial plans called for a completion date of 2023.

The new timetable takes into account details learned from agreements made with Metrolink, corridor cities along the route, and other third parties affected by the Gold Line expansion. Those agreements painted a clearer picture of future obstacles along the way, including rail detours, Metrolink track relocation, and constraints for construction of rail crossings at street level.

Gold Line officials actually view the expansion as two separate projects in one. Before construction of the light rail system can move forward, work must first be done to reconfigure several existing Metrolink stations along the route to accommodate new Gold Line platforms. In Claremont, the entire Metrolink station will be relocated in anticipation of the Gold Line extension.

The cost of the rail extension remains the same as 2015 estimates, but the additional two years of work, combined with minimum wage increases will add about $118 million in labor costs to the project. Officials now estimate the overall cost of the expansion to be $1.37 billion.

Once completed, the project will add six new stations to Metro’s Gold Line, with a trip from Montclair to Downtown LA expected to take about 75 minutes. Stations are planned in Glendora, San Dimas, La Verne, Pomona, Claremont, and Montclair.

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