RIVERSIDE (CBSLA.com) — Officials were set Friday to mark the beginning of construction on the 24-mile Metrolink Perris Valley Line in Riverside.

Riverside County Transportation officials and local business leaders were expected to be on hand to celebrate the debut of the project, which will expand Metrolink’s 91 Line commuter rail service to Perris and add four new stations in Riverside Hunter Park, Moreno Valley/March Field, Downtown Perris and South Perris.

The estimated $248.3 million effort also represents the first mileage extension of the Metrolink system since 1994, according to officials.

John Standiford of the Riverside County Transportation Commission told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO the new commuter train line should have a major economic impact.

“By building two stations and major job centers here, we think that’s gonna attract more employers to Riverside County,” Standiford said. “That’s gonna bring the kind of economic investment that we need that makes this kind of investment a smart one.”

The Perris Valley Line is expected to open by the end of 2015, officials said.

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