Metrolink Emerges Stronger and Better After a Year of Overcoming Challenges

How the organization’s dynamic ability to adapt to change and create new foundations will forever alter essential and non-essential services of railway travel.  

In a year that disrupted and changed the world, Metrolink took each challenge as an opportunity to champion innovation and become a better, more essential service for the mega-region we serve.  Our team did it by listening to you through surveys, connecting our region’s essential workers—who became our unshakeable core — safely to their jobs on the COVID-19 frontlines, and serving all the other selfless riders who sacrificed so much each and every day to help our community and their families function safely. 

Our customer-first approach and our fundamental values of safety and security became our North Star as we took the swift and necessary steps to keep our employees, contractors and riders safe while adapting to the rapidly changing environment driven by the global pandemic.  

The Metrolink team became even more essential to our essential riders each and every day; our employees stepped up to create a safe and supportive atmosphere on the train and within each station. On-site operators, conductors, dispatchers and railway engineers across the region continued to act as vital resources for information and security when our riders needed us most, ensuring that each rider could reach their final destination promptly and safely.  

The year has been transformational for Metrolink and our riders. Our team leaned into the disruption and chose to not only keep moving forward, but to become better at all the ways in which we serve you. We acted swiftly to implement a recovery plan and respond to your evolving needs:  We introduced new schedules and affordable new fares like Kids Ride Free on Weekends to help families venture on fun excursions safely throughout our region, and the 5-Day Flex Pass to help you choose when to travel at your convenience; we launched a new Loyalty program so we can thank you for riding with perks and points; and we opened a new online Metrolink store—a one-stop shop for all your favorite Metrolink rail swag. 

With safety as your top concern, we introduced the Clean Commute that provided more stringent sanitization, safety and cleaning protocols, including: 

  1. A state-of-the-art antimicrobial air filtration system to ensure the air you breathe throughout your journey is safe and clean 
  2. Mask requirements on platforms and trains 
  3. Physical distancing marked by decals at all of our stations 
  4. “How Full is My Train” online tool to help you plan ahead and ensure your train has plenty of room for physical distancing 
  5. Hand sanitizer stations (doubled in each car) 
  6. Clean Care Crews and Station Care Crews who ensure the cleanliness of stations in plain view throughout the day 

Over the past year, Metrolink has worked tirelessly to set a stronger course toward a brighter, more sustainable future for everyone. We’ve been introducing new ideas that improve equity and affordability, and advancing initiatives critical to our growth and reaching our goal of a zero emissions future. We reduced annual vehicle miles-traveled by 339,329,158 miles this past year, and since 2018, have replaced all of our “dirtiest” Tier 0 trains with 38 Tier 4 trains, the cleanest available. 

Our hard work and innovation have built a solid foundation on which we will continue to operate a rail system as dynamic as the future of the region we serve. But as the world re-opens, we also know we will need to remain flexible and continue to listen to your needs and adapt to your changing expectations.  

And we’re helping to set you up for future adventures easily accessible by train, at both familiar and new destinations throughout the region, with our new EXPLORE digital destination content hub. 

We’re ready, and we’re not done yet. We can’t wait to see where we go together next. Most of all, we can’t wait to see you here, on our trains.    

For more information on our journey this past year, click here.

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