Grade crossings at four streets along a Metrolink line in Palmdale and Lancaster will be enhanced for safety using up to $13.6 million in funds awarded to the rail system through the Federal Highway Administration Section 130 Program.

The safety improvements will take place at street crossings along its Antelope Valley Line, at avenues J and K in Lancaster, Avenue P in Palmdale and Avenue M, which encompasses both cities, Metrolink said.

Enhancements include automatic pedestrian gates with emergency exit swing gates, changes to the crossing warning system for more advance warning time, median widening and extending and changes to traffic signals, according to Metrolink Board Chair Ara Najarian.

“Safety is foundational at Metrolink and we are pleased to receive these vital funds to improve safety along one of our busiest rail corridors,” Najarian said.

“These improvements keep Metrolink on the leading edge by employing the newest engineering technologies and processes to enhance safety for riders, our employees and the communities we serve.”

The work, which is set to begin early 2023, will be done in partnership with Union Pacific Railroad and Palmdale and Lancaster, Najarian said. It’s expected to be completed in 18 months.

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