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Ontario Spending Half a Million to Get Rail to the Airport

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There's been talk of bringing a rail connection to the beleaguered LA/Ontario International Airport for years, but now there's finally real money being thrown at the issue, the Press-Enterprise reports. The San Bernardino Associated Governments board of directors recently awarded a $500,000-plus contract to an engineering firm to look into making rail to Ontario a reality, with the ultimate goal of providing "rail connections within walking distance to the airport terminals." Many hoped the current Gold Line, which reaches Pasadena and will touch Azusa in a few years, would eventually stretch to Ontario. That seems unlikely now, since Metro isn't currently funding the Gold Line extension to Montclair, which is west of the airport. The study could find ways to connect Ontario to Metrolink, via the San Bernardino line, or to California's high-speed rail. It's debatable whether Ontario Airport needs a rail connection--its traffic has dropped 46 percent in six years--but some argue that getting trains to the planes will increase patronage. Adding to complications is that the City of Ontario is suing Los Angeles World Airports, which operates the airport, for control of Ontario International. The engineering report won't be ready for a couple years.
· TRANSPORTATION: Rail link to Ontario airport studied [PE]