Metro board OKs plan to close two rail crossings along San Fernando Road

Metro's board of directors agreed to move forward with a plan to close two railroad crossings along the San Fernando Road corridor to traffic, and variations of that proposal are expected to be heading to the public for community feedback by the end of the year.

Unanimous approval was given to close crossings at Doran Street and Broadway/Brazil Street where the roads intersect with San Fernando Road. The latter intersection has been the scene of five fatalities.

However, the closures necessitate construction of a few connectors to help drivers access West San Fernando Road, and that's where the public will have an opportunity to provide input on a series of options.

The favored proposal suggests a P-shaped connector be built that links Fairmont Avenue to West San Fernando Road, which some residents worry will bring additional traffic to the adjacent residential area.

The second half of the plan outlines an overpass between Salem and Sperry streets to replace the Broadway/Brazil crossing.

Glendale Mayor Ara Najarian, who serves on Metro's board of directors, suggested doing away with the P-shaped connector and instead allowing the Salem-Sperry bridge to do the job of getting people across.

He wants to build a connector between the Grayson Power Plant and West San Fernando Road, but only as access for emergency responders.

Najarian's amendment to the plan will be one of the alternatives up for discussion.

Mark Dierking, community relations manager with Metro, said another option is called a J-hook, which is similar to the P-shape connector but would trim the amount of traffic diverted into the neighborhood.

Resident John Kociemba came up with the idea for the J-hook but is now more in favor of Najarian's suggestion.

"If you put anything on the Fairmont flyover, you're going to put traffic on Fairmont and the residential area," Kociemba said.

One concern he had, however, was that closing the Doran crossing would be several years down the road.

Dierking said he expects Metro to start meeting with business owners and residents living near the crossings by the end of the year.

arin.mikailian@latimes.com

Twitter: @arinmikailianhttps://twitter.com/arinmikailian

Mikailian is a staff writer for Times Community News.

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