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Construction Update and Picture of the Week

Posted by GoldLine

It was a historic week on the Foothill Gold Line when the first light rail train traveled on the tracks from Pasadena through Irwindale. More to come next week.

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December 12th, 2014
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VIDEO: Travel Along the Foothill Gold Line from Pasadena to Azusa in Just 6 Minutes!

Posted by GoldLine

When the Gold Line opens for service from Pasadena to Azusa, it will take about 17 minutes to travel the tracks that link Arcadia, Monrovia, Duarte, Irwindale and Azusa. This hi-rail tour (video below) will take you along the route in just six minutes. Strap on your seat belt, and enjoy the ride!

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December 10th, 2014
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First train car pulled across Foothill Gold Line tracks in Arcadia, Monrovia – San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Posted by GoldLine

The following article appeared in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune on December 8, 2014.

First train car pulled across Foothill Gold Line tracks in Arcadia, Monrovia – San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Initial train testing for the Foothill Gold Line from Pasadena to Azusa started Monday, December 8, 2014, passing the newly built bridge on Santa Anita Avenue in Arcadia.  A single Gold Line Metro Rail train pulled by a special wheeled truck. The Metro Gold Line train had taped wings made of styrofoam taped to the sides of the train to measure clearances as it passed through bridges and Arcadia and Monrovia train stations. The train will be operated on its own power from California Avenue through the city of Duarte. (Photo by Walt Mancini/Pasadena Star-News)

By Steve Scauzillo

December 8, 2014

For the first time, a light-rail train car rode the tracks of the Gold Line Foothill extension Monday, successfully crossing the 210 Freeway and navigating stations in Arcadia, Irwindale and Monrovia.

The achievement brings the $1 billion,11.5-mile extension from east Pasadena to the Azusa/Glendora border one step closer to reality, officials said.

“This is of course the first of many months of testing ahead. It is an important milestone for the project, which continues on time and on budget for completion in just 10 months,” said Habib Balian, CEO of the Foothill Gold Line Construction Authority in a statement.

The rail-car testing, ordered by the California Public Utilities Commission, will test clearances between the train and stations, the wheel and rail interface and the overhead catenary system which supplies electrical power to the light-rail, Balian said.

Live testing of the electrical power system will take place in the next two weeks between California Avenue in Monrovia and the San Gabriel River bridge in Irwindale, Balian explained.

A hi-rail big-rig pulled the $4 million, 100,000-pound AnsaldoBreda P2250-model train car about 5 miles traveling eastward from the Sierra Madre Villa Station in Pasadena, across the freeway bridge designed by Andrew Leicester that stretches over the eastbound 210 lanes, and downhill to the at-grade intersection at First Street and Santa Clara Avenue in downtown Arcadia.

Just after noon, the train lingered at the Arcadia station platform for about 75 minutes as workers adjusted pieces of the blue Styrofoam “wings” affixed to the train and measured the clearances, sources said.

The Styrofoam wings marked the outer limits of the “dynamic envelope” of the train, which moves side to side at higher speeds, explained Lisa Levy Buch, Gold Line Construction Authority spokesperson.

After several stops and starts marked by sharp blasts of the train whistle, the silver rail car was pulled through the intersection as a sheriff’s patrol car blocked vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

Passers-by, employees from the Construction Authority and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the latter which will be tasked with operating the train, recorded history by snapping photos and taking videos.

“This is an historic moment,” said Doug Tessitor, a Glendora city councilman and Pasadena’s appointee to the Construction Authority board. Tessitor, who serves as chairman, was excited about the new line but concerned that Metro would not have enough trains to fully operate it once construction is finished in late September.

The issue of trains arriving from producer Kinkisharyo International, a Japanese company assembling train cars in Palmdale, to supply the Foothill and Expo Line Phase 2 from Culver City to Santa Monica, remains a concern, as first raised by this newspaper in November. While Metro has assured operators of both construction authorities there will be enough train cars, the mega agency has said the two lines will be completed in summer 2016, a year or so after the local agencies say, and that the trains would be delivered to Metro by January 2017.

Metro spokesman Paul Gonzales, who came to watch the first test train Monday, said Metro must do extensive testing and hire and train new operators before the Gold Line extension line can operate. Operators won’t be pulled off existing lines, he said.

Among the spectators was Alan Weeks, 82, of Eagle Rock, a former Metro employee. For Weeks, seeing the train on the new tracks was like going back to the future.

“I rode the last (Pacific Electric) Red Car here; it was on Sept. 30, 1951,” Weeks said.

He remembers watching with tears as demolition crews tore up the Red Line tracks in Monrovia and Arcadia. But he’s also optimistic about the new Gold Line, even the phase that is not yet funded to reach Montclair.

“As soon as this line opens up, there will be a great interest in it,” he predicted. That will lead to political pressure to fund the next phase from Glendora to Montclair, he said.

Train-watcher Bob Davis of San Gabriel said whenever he rides the train to Los Angeles/Union Station, he sees the benefit as he looks out the window onto the clogged 210 Freeway. “The train is going 55 mph and the cars are going 5 mph,” he said.

Photo Gallery: Click Here

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December 9th, 2014
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First Light Rail Vehicle Rides on Foothill Gold Line

Posted by GoldLine

This morning marked an important milestone for the 11.5-mile Foothill Gold Line, as the first light rail vehicle traveled east passed the Sierra Madre Villa station and onto the newly completed tracks from Pasadena to Azusa.

Over the next two weeks, the train will be used to test clearances, wheel and rail interfaces, rail switches, and the Overhead Catenary System (OCS) that powers the trains between Arcadia and Duarte. For testing purposes, the train is wrapped and protected.

To see more pictures, click here to visit the photo album.

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December 8th, 2014
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Construction Update and Picture of the Week

Posted by GoldLine

Tests are conducted on isolated joints within the track at the Operations Campus.

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December 5th, 2014
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Construction Update and Picture of the Week

Posted by GoldLine

In preparation for the first train testing in early December, crews are completing OCS wire installation in Monrovia.

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November 26th, 2014
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Construction Update and Picture of the Week

Posted by GoldLine

The final traction power substation was installed in Azusa this week. In all, 10 have been installed along the project, each designed specifically for its position along the light rail system. With all of the substations in place, testing of the line will commence in early December; an important milestone for the project.

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November 21st, 2014
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Station Design & Art Review Committees from the Foothill Gold Line from Azusa to Montclair Toured Gold Line Stations for Design Inspiration

Posted by GoldLine


Pictured above, about 40 members of the Station Design and Art Review (SDAR) committees from the Azusa to Montclair segment cities – Glendora, San Dimas, La Verne, Pomona, Claremont and Montclair – toured Gold Line stations in South Pasadena, Pasadena and Arcadia to begin their process of developing the design and art plans for their respective future stations. SDAR committee members are appointed by each city and consist of a station artist, local community members, elected officials, and city staff.


The tour, hosted by the Construction Authority, took the committee members to the Del Mar and Fillmore stations in Pasadena; South Pasadena station; and the future Arcadia station. The committee members were shown station elements, artwork and other important features to take into consideration for their own cities’ station art plans. At the South Pasadena station, the tour group was hosted by South Pasadena Councilmember Michael Cacciotti, who explained the planning process and betterments that the city implemented around the station – which has contributed to the area’s revitalization since the Gold Line’s arrival.

With the lessons learned from the tour, each SDAR committee will now proceed to produce a station design and art plan that can go before their respective city councils for approval.

More pictures of the tour are below.

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November 19th, 2014
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Construction Update and Picture of the Week

Posted by GoldLine

Work continues on the exterior of the main building at the Gold Line Operations Campus.

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November 14th, 2014
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Construction Update and Picture of the Week

Posted by GoldLine


The Foothill Gold Line joined the City of Arcadia and more than one hundred community leaders to dedicate the newly-opened Arcadia Transit Plaza in Downtown Arcadia.

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November 7th, 2014
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