The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) has released the draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for the Antelope Valley Line Capacity and Service Improvements Program to evaluate potential benefits and impacts of building infrastructure to support increased rail service between Los Angeles and the Antelope Valley.

A 45-day review period of the DEIR began July 28 and concludes Sept. 10. A virtual public meeting will be held tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (phone (213) 338-8477; meeting ID: 998-8162-7606) where residents, communities, businesses, cities, stakeholders and the general public can learn about the project, the environmental review process and provide comments on the DEIR.

The Antelope Valley Line (AVL) Capacity and Service Improvements Program is a proposed project that aims to improve service frequency and reliability along the 76.6-mile AVL passenger rail corridor between Lancaster and downtown Los Angeles. The AVL corridor plays a critical role in connecting communities in north Los Angeles County to LA Union Station (LAUS) and the cities in between.

The AVL corridor is anticipated to experience strong population and employment growth over the next 20 years, and solutions to realize the full potential of the AVL will be crucial to support this growth. Around 66 percent of the AVL rail corridor is single track, meaning that only one track is provided to operate trains in both directions. This limits the ability to run more frequent services and keep trains on a regular schedule.

AVL line improvements are part of the $10 billion Southern California Optimized Rail Expansion (SCORE) program. SCORE is a capital program improving infrastructure to enable bidirectional Metrolink service every 30 minutes prior to the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The three capital improvements under study include the Lancaster Terminal Improvements, the Balboa Double Track Extension located in Los Angeles, and the Canyon Siding Extension located in Santa Clarita.