The Los Angeles delegation met and decided it would be in the region’s best interest to pay for the continuation of those lines, Najarian said.
“We had funds that were un-allocated, and we wanted to buy back those cuts that were bringing in employees to Disney, employees to DreamWorks and riders to the Bob Hope Airport,” he said.
The Burbank and Glendale stations connect the Metrolink system with tens of thousands of riders, city officials said.
Burbank Mayor Gary Bric had argued that the proposed cuts to Metrolink’s Ventura County-line trains would damage the Union Station-Downtown Burbank- Bob Hope Airport rail connection.
The cuts would also deter commuters into and out of both cities from turning to public transportation as officials look to reduce congestion and improve the environment, said Glendale Mayor Frank Quintero, who serves on the airport authority.
“It only makes sense to try to have that connectivity between mass transit centers, railroad stations and airports,” he said. “Especially now.”
Rail officials had contended that the average 500 daily passengers serviced by the eight Ventura County trains slated for elimination could be absorbed by higher-traffic lines.
Airport Commissioner Don Brown said the proposed Metrolink-Amtrak train station, to be reviewed by the city in the coming months, would become more difficult to sell if the six trains were eliminated.
“It would probably raise eyebrows in the community with people asking, ‘Why are they spending this money when trains are being cut?’” Brown said.
And as the board weighs future cuts as part of a projected $15 million-deficit next fiscal year, the best way to keep the agency solvent is by keeping trains in service, airport Commissioner Charles Lombardo said.
“I think this was a victory for the traveling public,” he said.
Get in touch CHRISTOPHER CADELAGO covers City Hall and the courts. He may be reached at (818) 637-3242 or by e-mail at christopher.cadelago@ latimes.com