At a ceremony scheduled for November 9, Metrolink is slated to break ground on a new project which will enable more frequent service on its Antelope Valley and Ventura County rail lines.

The Burbank Junction Speed Improvement Project, planned on the approach to Downtown Burbank Station, calls for realigning, replacing, and extending main line track and siding along a roughly half-mile stretch roughly bounded by Burbank Boulevard to the north and Magnolia Boulevard to the south. Additionally, plans call for the installation of new right-of-way safety fencing within the project corridor.

The upgrades, which are expected to be completed by Summer 2023, will enable Metrolink to run more frequent service in the future, with wait times of no more than 30 minutes for trains running in both directions. The project also offers minor improvements to end-to-end travel times, cutting roughly one-and-a-half minutes off of trips on the Antelope Valley and Ventura County lines.

Project map for Burbank Junction Speed Improvement ProjectMetrolink

Simultaneously, Metrolink is planning to begin work on improvements to the Burbank Airport South Station (served by both the Ventura County Line and Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner) to upgrade pedestrian crossings and enable two trains to stop at the station at the same time.

The upgrades to the Burbank Junction are part of the first phase of Metrolink's SCORE program (or Southern California Optimized Rail Expansion), a $10-billion capital improvements plan which aims to make targeted upgrades across the roughly 500-mile passenger rail network, in an effort to beef up service by the time the Olympics return to Los Angeles in 2028.  To date, local jurisdictions have contributed $595 million toward the SCORE program, which has been supplemented by a $876 million grant from the California Transit Intercity Rail Capital Program. To date, Metrolink has raised $2.3 billion in funds for its plans.

Besides the Burbank Junction upgrade, other SCORE projects now in the works include plans for new segments of double track on the on the Ventura County Line, new sidings for the San Bernardino Line, and to key hubs such as Chatsworth Station.

Outside of SCORE, other recent Metrolink projects include plans to add new double track to the 91/Perris Valley Line and the freshly-opened Arrow extension between San Bernardino and Redlands.