Laguna Niguel San Juan Capistrano Passing Siding Project

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  • Laguna Niguel to San Juan Capistrano Passing Siding Project

  • Background Information

    OCTA in cooperation with Metrolink, the city of Laguna Niguel and the city of San Juan Capistrano, proposes the addition of approximately 1.8 miles of new passing siding railroad track adjacent to the existing mainline railroad track from the Laguna Niguel/Mission Viejo Metrolink Station to 500-feet north of Trabuco Creek in San Juan Capistrano. All work on the tracks will be done within the existing railroad right-of-way, minimizing impacts to the community.

    Two small areas of work outside of the right-of-way include:
    (1) asphalt paving adjacent to Camino Capistrano to accommodate parking, and
    (2) Reprofiling of approximately 600 feet of Camino Capistrano adjacent to the Rancho Capistrano private crossing.

    Project Benefits

    Project benefits include safer, more reliable and faster passenger service; congestion relief at the Laguna Niguel-Mission Viejo station; and enhanced operational efficiency of passenger services in the Los Angeles – San Diego – San Luis Obispo (LOSSAN) rail corridor. Operations between the Irvine and Oceanside stations would be four to six percent more efficient over the current scheduled travel times. The passing siding track will reduce the amount of time that trains will spend holding for opposing trains, therefore, this proposed project will allow for trains to move faster through this section of the LOSSAN rail corridor.

    Project Status

    Environmental Clearance
    On February 24, 2014, the OCTA Board of Directors adopted the Final Initial Study with Mitigated Negative Declaration for the Laguna Niguel - San Juan Capistrano Passing Siding Project and the Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program in compliance with the State of California Environmental Quality Act. On March 19, 2014, the Federal Transit Administration provided a Categorical Exclusion determination for this project in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act.

    Next Steps
    The project is in the final design phase, during which plans, specifications and estimates for the project are prepared and environmental permits are obtained. Construction is expected to begin by early 2019, and public outreach will be conducted in advance of and during the construction period.

    Project Manager & Publications

    For more information, please contact Chris Boucly, OCTA Community Relations, at 714-560-5326 or

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