LOS ANGELES (CNS) – Metrolink’s Ventura County Line, which connects Moorpark and Simi Valley with stations in the San Fernando Valley and Union Station in Los Angeles, began Saturday service today.

   The line stops at stations in Chatsworth, Northridge, Van Nuys, the Burbank Airport area, downtown Burbank and Glendale before arriving at Los Angeles Union Station. Saturday trains depart Moorpark at 8:52 a.m. and arrive at Union Station at 10:07 a.m. Trains then leave Union Station at 4:28 p.m. and arrive in Moorpark at 5:39 p.m.

   “Now that health and social conditions are steadily improving from the COVID-19 pandemic, we see a burgeoning demand for weekend leisure travel,” Metrolink board member and Ventura County Transportation Commission Vice Chairman Tony Trembley said earlier this month.

   “Metrolink’s new Saturday service on the Ventura County Line will help families get out and explore Southern California again,” Trembley said.

   Metrolink officials hope Saturday service will encourage Ventura County families to skip the traffic and take the train to visit destinations walking distance from Union Station, including Chinatown, Grand Hope Park and the Bloc, and plan to expand it farther west in the “near future,” according to VCTC Executive Director Darren Kettle.

   Riders can purchase a $10 Weekend Day Pass for unlimited rides on Metrolink trains on the Saturday or Sunday that the pass was purchased. Sunday service is not provided for the Ventura County Line and the Riverside Line, which also does not operate on Saturday.

   Free rides during the weekends are provided for to up to three children age 17 or younger who are traveling with a paying adult.

   Metrolink’s schedules are available at metrolinktrains.com/schedules; information on safety protocols taken by Metrolink during the COVID-19 pandemic at bit.ly/3wgOZOb.