A Coaster train crosses the lagoon south of Del Mar. Photo courtesy North County Transit District

The North County Transit District released a study Thursday regarding examining passenger and freight rail services along the Los Angeles-San Diego-San Luis Obispo rail corridor.

According to a news release, the San Diego Pathing Study final report drew on previous efforts by North County Transit District (NCTD) and other rail corridor stakeholders to create a plan that aligns with the 2018 California State Rail Plan.

The nation’s second-busiest rail corridor, LOSSAN moves approximately $1 billion of freight and more than 8 million rail passengers in a typical year.

The study identifies and prioritizes infrastructure improvements to increase future service capacity. As a blueprint, it would also assist NCTD and its rail partners in growing service along a corridor that is bottlenecked by single track and other infrastructure deficiencies.

The NCTD said the study found the benefits to the San Diego and Southern California region include:

– Expanding COASTER service to the San Diego Convention Center, an entertainment and employment hub;

– Extending service to a new Amtrak maintenance facility in National City to aid Pacific Surfliner operations;

– Increased freight services along the LOSSAN corridor to five roundtrips per day; and

– Minimizing rail-crossing delays with extended signaling, and crossing gates to improve rail speed and coordination.

Collaboration on the study by NCTD and its freight partner “represents the best example of a win-win in public-private partnerships,” said Tony Kranz, NCTD board chair and Encinitas City Council member.

“We look forward to applying this framework in our capital project planning,” Kranz said. “We expect these findings will translate into improved passenger and freight services that support our efforts to increase rail service frequencies, improve our rider experience and improve our economy and overall quality of life.”

The full study can be found by clicking this link.

— City News Service

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