Metro Floats 'Light Rail on Tires' Concept Between Pasadena and North Hollywood to City Committee, Community Meeting

Published : Wednesday, September 26, 2018 | 5:35 AM

Metro officials will be in Pasadena this week and next with plans for a proposed new Measure M-funded Bus Rapid Transit line connecting North Hollywood and Pasadena which could result in dedicating traffic lanes on Colorado Boulevard to the bus service.

The $267 million project is still years off and details are preliminary, according to Metro documents.

Two primary concepts are being considered for the project: a Primary Street Concept that follows surface streets from Metro’s Orange Line station in North Hollywood to Pasadena, and a Primary Freeway Concept that originates from North Hollywood and aligns the Bus Rapid Transit service along the 134 Freeway HOV (high-occupancy vehicle) lanes as well as some surface streets for about 17 miles.

Metro has proposed two alternative surface street routes through Pasadena as part of its "street running" option. Its primary concept would select Colorado Boulevard, its alternative concept is a Green Street / Union Street "couplet." Image courtesy Metro

Metro said the North Hollywood to Pasadena line could start service between 2022 and 2024.

The transit corridor was identified as the most heavily traveled corridor without a premium bus service in Metro’s 2013 Countywide Bus Rapid Transit and Street Design Improvement Study.

That study reported more than 700,000 daily trips coming into the study area from the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys.

Aside from Pasadena, the cities of Los Angeles, Burbank, and Glendale, as well as the community of Eagle Rock in Los Angeles, are located within the Pasadena Corridor to North Hollywood corridor.

Current plans for the line call for special buses to exit the 134 Freeway in West Pasadena and either run along Colorado Boulevard east to Hill Avenue or east to St. John Avenue where the line would split into eastbound along Green Street and westbound returning along Union Street.

One lane of traffic in each direction on the selected route’s streets would be dedicated to the exclusive use of the Bus Rapid Transit service.

“At this point, we are considering the use of dedicated bus lanes as one of several key BRT elements,” confirmed Metro’s Communications Manager Brian Haas. “However, since we are still early in the planning process and have not yet determined an alignment nor a proposed project, the environmental analysis will help us do that.”

Pasadena’s Transportation Advisory Commission will hear a public briefing Thursday on the proposed bus line in a meeting which begins at 4 p.m. in City Hall Basement Grand Conference Room S038.

Then next Wednesday on October 3, Metro will conduct a public community meeting at the Pasadena Senior Center, one of several meetings Metro is conducting with communities in the Southland as part of the formal planning and environmental study phase for the North Hollywood-to-Pasadena BRT project.

Next Wednesday’s community meeting is from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Senior Center, located at 85 E. Holly Street in Pasadena. The Senior Center is an ADA-accessible facility and is accessible by transit. Spanish translation will be provided during the meeting.

For questions or to share your feedback, call Metro at (213) 418-3228 or email


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