Beware Angel Stadium Metrolink

Jun 5, 2012; Anaheim, CA, USA; Los Angeles Angels third baseman Alberto Callaspo (6) celebrates at the end of the game against the Seattle Mariners at Angel Stadium. The Angels defeated the Mariners 6-1. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE

After almost a season and a half of taking Metrolink rail transportation to Angels games, I cannot in good conscience endorse this increasingly terrible method of beating traffic...

I am writing this three hours and ten minutes after the end of the Angels 6-1 victory over the Mariners. Usually this is a late night of elation but standing on a cold, windy platform for twenty minutes to get into a train, leave the station, go up the tracks a mile and stop for an hour and ten minutes before continuing on for an hour ride to my station FOR THE THIRD TIME IN A WEEK has taken all the joy of seeing Angels baseball live. When the only relief is an absence of Yankees fans, Metro we have a problem.

No train service to the game would be superior to what Metrolink is offering this year.

If these ridiculous delays - which counteract all of Metrolink's ad campaign about how rail service is more convenient and hassle-free - if these delays were the only problem that would be one thing, but with full knowledge that there is trouble with track that is being repaired, Metrolink gives no information nor indication to its riders that there will be any trouble ahead. Of course we all want train safety and it is understandable that there are going to be times where a train driving slow or stopping for safety reasons is in order. Don't hold your breath waiting for "Attention Metrolink Riders, you will be able to walk to Fullerton faster than the train trip you are taking on two miles of track is about to last..."

But really what is happening is that Metrolink does not really have the track infrastructure to deliver fans to the game and back both safely and conveniently. There is surely federal grant money for them to appear like they do. But they cannot deliver the service they claim to offer.

I can drive to Downtown Los Angeles after a weeknight Angels game in 45 minutes. There might be some tradeoff in time because Metrolink offered a better delivery of service based on cost or relaxation of not having to drive. The cost of tickets for two people and station parking is about what gas and stadium parking would add up to. But sitting on a stalled train under a searing fluorescent glow that block your ability to even peer out the window at night is just no great shakes.

And if you are worried about your carbon footprint on the environment, consider what an idling train pumps into the environment.

If you are thinking of taking the Metrolink to an Angels game, think again. When the traffic on the 57 and the 5 getting to the game and the jam getting out of the stadium are all combined, they are still preferable to being at the mercy of a Metrolink announcer announcing that he does not know when the train you are on will be moving.

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