Letter: Station fixes neglect railway passengers

I had not paid much attention to the past news reports about the vaunted Intermodal hub at the Burbank Airport but a few weeks ago I wondered how it had enhanced the Amtrak stop there because I needed to pick up family members arriving on the train from Portland.

To my surprise, there was absolutely nothing related to rail transport opposite the hub. In fact there was minimal accommodation of any kind for Amtrak or Metrolink passengers except some covered benches. Even more annoying, there was only some limited very difficult parking and a pull-off for just vans and buses on Empire Avenue and only a few short-term parking spots on the other side of Vanowen Street on the south side of the tracks. As I picked up my son and his wife, others that got off the train with them seemed totally confused about what to do or where to go.

In the News-Press article, "Intermodal hub called a 'milestone' for region," June 28-29, the new $112-million hub was "called by many a significant step toward linking multiple types of transportation....". For the millions spent, one would think there had to be some accommodation built for Amtrak and Metrolink passengers, but amazingly there was nothing. But wait a minute, the article further states that "upcoming improvements include a pedestrian bridge over Empire Avenue from the Metrolink station...." But the bridge will not even enter the design phase until this fall at the earliest. Any bets on when it actually will be built and functional? In the meantime, it seems that "intermodal" is a significant misrepresentation. In the near term more readily visible and accessible parking for rail passengers should be made on both Empire and Vanowen streets.

Robert Morrison

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