Orange County Line

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Orange County Line
F59PH 860 High resolution.JPG
Metrolink locomotive 860 at Irvine
TypeCommuter rail
LocaleLos Angeles, Orange, and San Diego Counties
TerminiLos Angeles Union Station
Daily ridership8,255 (2012)
OwnerBNSF Railway (Los Angeles–Fullerton)
SCRRA (Fullerton–OC/SD County Line)
NCTD (OC/SD County Line–Oceanside)
CharacterElevated and surface-level
Line length87.2 miles (140.3 km)
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in)
Operating speed90 mph (140 km/h) (top)[1]
41 mph (66 km/h) (average)[2]
Route map

Los Angeles Union Station Amtrak LAMetroLogo.svg Parking
(limited service)
Norwalk/Santa Fe Springs Parking
Buena Park Parking
Fullerton Amtrak Parking
AnaheimAmtrak Greyhound Lines Parking
Orange Parking
Santa Ana AmtrakParking
(OC Streetcar 2021)
Tustin Parking
Irvine Amtrak Parking
Laguna Niguel/​Mission Viejo Parking
San Juan Capistrano Parking
San Clemente Parking
San Clemente Pier
(limited service)
Oceanside Amtrak Coaster icon.svg Sprinter San Diego.png Parking

The Orange County Line is a commuter rail line run by Metrolink from Los Angeles through Orange County to Oceanside in San Diego County, connecting with the Coaster commuter rail service to San Diego. The Orange County Line carries passengers to the primary Metrolink hub at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles, as well as to many attractions in Orange County including Angel Stadium of Anaheim and the Honda Center, the Disneyland Resort, Old Town Orange, and Mission San Juan Capistrano.[3]


The Orange County Line began on April 30, 1990 as the Orange County Commuter, an Amtrak-operated service between Los Angeles and San Juan Capistrano funded by the Orange County Transportation Authority.[4][5] The Orange County Commuter made a single weekday round-trip, departing San Juan Capistrano in the morning and returning in the evening.[6] Amtrak conveyed the route to Metrolink on March 28, 1994, becoming the "Orange County Line" and Metrolink's fifth route.[7][8] Service expanded to eight trips in 1995.[9]

In October 2005, the Orange County Transportation Authority announced that it would increase service on the Orange County Line, running trains twenty hours daily, seven days a week every 30 minutes. The first part of the additional service was implemented in June 2006 with Saturday service, and July 2006 with Sunday service. The plan has drawn criticism[citation needed] as many Metrolink stations are located beyond walking distance from important destinations such as Disneyland and the adjacent Anaheim Convention Center, Knott's Berry Farm, and the Irvine Spectrum. Funds for new rolling stock and track improvements were allocated from the voter-approved Measure M half-cent sales tax, while critics[who?] had advocated using the money for bus operations or other transit service instead. To address some of these issues, OCTA operates a series of Stationlink shuttle routes that connect Metrolink stations in Orange County to nearby destinations.

As of 2019 service is provided seven days a week, with 29 trains on weekdays, and 8 on weekends. The Amtrak Pacific Surfliner supplements Orange County Line service by providing limited stop service along the corridor and more service during mid-days, nights and weekends.


The route of the Orange County Line may be used for future extensions of the planned California High-Speed Rail line from Los Angeles Union Station to Anaheim. Potential stops include Norwalk or Fullerton.


While the Orange County Line shares trackage with Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner trains, its northernmost stations (from Los Angeles to Fullerton, excluding Commerce) are shared with the 91 Line and nearly all of its other stations with the IEOC line (from Orange to Oceanside).

The Orange County Line runs on the BNSF Railway's Southern Transcon track between Los Angeles and Fullerton, under a shared-right-of-way agreement. Several stations, most notably the ones in downtown Fullerton and Santa Ana, are renovated Spanish Colonial Revival depots originally built by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway. Sections of the line between Santa Ana and Oceanside allow for 90-mile-per-hour (140 km/h) operating speeds.[1]


Under Amtrak operation the Orange County Commuter stopped at the following stations: Los Angeles, Commerce, Fullerton, Anaheim–Stadium, Orange, Santa Ana, Irvine, and San Juan Capistrano.[10] With the Metrolink takeover in 1994 the southern terminus moved to Oceanside and five infill stations were subsequently added:[11] San Clemente and Norwalk/Santa Fe Springs in 1995,[12][13] Tustin and Laguna Niguel/​Mission Viejo in 2002,[14][15] and Buena Park in 2007[16]

Station Location Address Connections
San Diego County
Oceanside Oceanside 235 S. Tremont St, Oceanside 92054

Amtrak Amtrak: Pacific Surfliner
Coaster icon.svg Coaster
Sprinter San Diego.png Sprinter

Orange County
San Clemente Pier (weekends only) San Clemente 615 Avenida Victoria, San Clemente 92673

Amtrak Amtrak: Pacific Surfliner

San Clemente 1850 Avenida Estacion, San Clemente 92673
San Juan Capistrano San Juan Capistrano 26701 Verdugo St, San Juan Capistrano 92675

Amtrak Amtrak: Pacific Surfliner

Laguna Niguel/​Mission Viejo Laguna Niguel 28200 Fobres Rd, Laguna Niguel 92677
Irvine Irvine 15215 Barranca Pkwy, Irvine 92618

Amtrak Amtrak: Pacific Surfliner

Tustin Tustin 2975 Edinger Ave, Tustin 92780
Santa Ana Santa Ana 1000 E. Santa Ana Blvd, Santa Ana 92701

Amtrak Amtrak: Pacific Surfliner

Orange Orange 194 North Atchison St, Orange 92866
Anaheim Anaheim 2626 E. Katella Ave, Anaheim 92806 Amtrak Amtrak: Pacific Surfliner
Fullerton Fullerton 120 E. Santa Fe Ave, Fullerton 92832

Amtrak Amtrak: Pacific Surfliner, Southwest Chief

Buena Park Buena Park 8400 Lakeknoll Dr, Buena Park 90621
Los Angeles County
Norwalk/Santa Fe Springs Norwalk 12650 Imperial Hwy, Norwalk 90650
Commerce (limited service) Commerce 6433 E. 26th Street, Commerce 90040
LA Union Station Downtown Los Angeles 800 N. Alameda St, Los Angeles 90012

Amtrak Amtrak: Coast Starlight, Pacific Surfliner, Southwest Chief, Sunset Limited, Texas Eagle
LAMetroLogo.svg Metro Rail: Red, Purple, and Gold lines

The October 2017 timetable shows ten weekday trains from Los Angeles to Oceanside and back, eight from Fullerton to Laguna Niguel and back, seven from Los Angeles to Laguna Niguel and back, four from Fullerton to Oceanside, and two from Los Angeles to Irvine and back.

Passengers that have monthly passes can use Pacific Surfliner trains between their station pairs on any day except for specific blacked out days by Amtrak for holidays and special events (such as events at Del Mar) on this line.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b SMA Rail Consulting (April 2016). "California Passenger Rail Network Schematics" (PDF). California Department of Transportation.
  2. ^ "Metrolink Fact Sheet for June 2012" (PDF). Metrolink. Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 December 2015. Retrieved 26 October 2012.
  3. ^ "Metrolink Timetable" (PDF). June 6, 2016. Retrieved August 12, 2016.
  4. ^ "COUNTYWIDE : Ridership Healthy on Commuter Train". Los Angeles Times. May 5, 1990.
  5. ^ Rail Passenger Development Plan: 1991-96 Fiscal Years (PDF). Sacramento, CA: Division of Mass Transportation, Caltrans. 1991. p. 173.
  6. ^ Amtrak (October 28, 1990). "National Train Timetables". Retrieved 2010-05-16.
  7. ^ NARP (March 25, 1994). "NARP March 1994 Hotlines". Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved 2010-05-16.
  8. ^ TRAINS Magazine - Railroad News, Web Cam, Railroading Video - Metrolink
  9. ^ Berkman, Leslie (July 14, 1995). "Metrolink Adds 2 More Trains Per Day for Orange County". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  10. ^ "National Timetable". The Museum of Railway Timetables. Amtrak. October 31, 1993. Retrieved 29 May 2020.
  11. ^ Catz, Sarah L. (February 14, 1994). "Plans for Flexible Transportation Alternatives Are Moving Right Along". The Los Angeles Times. p. 91. Retrieved July 5, 2019 – via
  12. ^ Ni, Ching-Ching (March 6, 1995). "San Clemente Goes on Fast Track With Its New Metrolink Station". Los Angeles Times. p. 77. Retrieved July 5, 2019 – via
  13. ^ "Metrolink Station Opens". The Los Angeles Times. July 18, 1995. p. 23. Retrieved July 5, 2019 – via
  14. ^ McKibben, Dave (April 17, 2002). "Laguna Niguel/Mission Viejo Metrolink Depot Set to Debut". Los Angeles Times. p. 11. Retrieved July 5, 2019 – via
  15. ^ Morin, Monte (January 18, 2002). "New Metrolink Station to Debut Today in Tustin". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved July 5, 2019.
  16. ^ Reyes, David (September 5, 2007). "Metrolink's Buena Park station opens for business". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 5, 2019.

External links[edit]

Route map:

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