We know our light rail passengers are eager to see the trains running again. We are too. Our multi-phase plan is now underway with expectations to resume light rail service by the end of July, although no firm date can be set at this time.
In an effort to ensure employees feel safe, secure and confident to return to their jobs, the timeline to get service running again includes separate but parallel tracks focused on infrastructure and Guadalupe Division employees. Employees will be informed of changes such as interim work locations, new processes or procedures, and security measures that have been put in place.
The restoration of service will be carried out in phases with each phase completed before the next phase can begin:
Phase 1: (currently underway) Outreaching to Guadalupe employees and identifying immediate/interim work locations.
Phase 2: Moving and onboarding critical staff entails fit for duty evaluations and set up of immediate work locations.
Phases 3-5 involve continued onboarding of staff, infrastructure repairs, and a "soft opening" in non-revenue service before being fully operational. For example, after going through the onboarding process, Light Rail Operators will operate trains in non-revenue service with no passengers before operating in revenue service. Way Power & Signal (WP&S) staff will check out their new work location and visually inspect the line rather than start actual inspections or repairs.
There may be a need for retraining, in compliance with California Public Utilities Commission regulations, or accommodations to reassign employees to other jobs. VTA’s collective priority is to put our people first while also achieving the goal of providing critical transit services to our community. We ask that you keep in mind that the reopening of light rail service is a significant process considering the work that we are putting into making sure our employees are ready to return. Each successfully completed phase is critical to provide a strong foundation for the next phase. We will keep the public updated on completion of phases. Thank you for your patience while we work through this together.
This blog post was updated at 3:24 p.m.