Nearly 3,000 people attended the Port of Long Beach’s train tours over the weekend. The free event was designed to give the public a rare inside look into Port operations, and was booked within days of being announced earlier in the month. Watch video of the tours here.
The Port arranged tours of the terminals and rail facilities to educate and inform the public about the Port and the importance of railroad to the region’s cargo moving system. The $155 billion worth of cargo moving through the Port every year helps support more than 300,000 jobs in the region, including 1 in every 8 jobs in Long Beach.
“We’re reaching out with our rail tours to show the community how important the rail system is to the Port’s ability to generate jobs and to reduce air pollution,” said Port Executive Director J. Christopher Lytle, who attended Saturday’s first tour. “With the overwhelming response to this event, we hope to try it again in the future.”
Every day, dozens of trains come and go at the Port loaded with products from all over the world. Each fully loaded train takes between 280 and 750 truck trips off the roads.
With about $4.5 billion in capital improvement projects underway or planned this decade, including $1 billion to improve rail facilities, the Port is working to modernize its operations and reduce its impact on the environment. Rail is an important component of those improvements.
Three train tours were scheduled for each of the days and were fully booked. The event was coordinated in partnership with Pacific Harbor Line, the Port’s short-line railroad that coordinates all the rail activity inside the port complex, and Metrolink, which serves more than 45,000 riders a day, across 512 miles of tracks in five Southern California counties.