More on the Expo Line opening

 

Here are a few tidbits from this morning’s announcement that the Expo Line is opening to the public on Saturday, April 28:

•Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Antonio Villaraigosa said that there will be free rides on opening day.

•After the line opens, trains will be running every 12 minutes, according to Metro officials. The run time between 7th/Metro Center in downtown L.A. and the La Cienega station will be under 30 minutes — on test rides in both directions Friday, I clocked the ride time as averaging 26 minutes, although station stops were very brief.

 

•Metro officials said that the signal systems at the junction of the Blue Line and Expo Line tracks at Washington and Flower seem to be resolved. The problem involved the signals delaying trains from going through the junction, thereby making it hard to create a schedule for the train that would be accurate.

•Work on the Culver City station continues and testing still needs to be done on the segment of track between La Cienega and Culver City, the final station in Phase 1 of the Expo Line. Metro officials are hopeful that the train will open to Culver City by summer.

 

Photos:

At top, a train rests at the La Cienega station, with the downtown L.A. skyline in the distance. On a clear days, the views to downtown and the San Gabriel Mountains and beyond will be even better.

Middle: Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky and Metro Director Richard Katz make the announcement Friday morning that the Expo Line will open Sat., April 28.

Bottom: The view from the cab as a westbound Expo train pulls into the La Brea station.

Photos by Steve Hymon/Metro and photos are free for use by all members of the public and media. No attribution required — it’s your government!

25 replies

    • Rich H,

      The Expo Line will initially run to La Cienega and Jefferson Blvd., while construction finishes on the furthest west station in Culver City, which is at Venice and Robertson.

      Best,

      Carter Rubin
      Contributor, The Source

  1. Just imagine the amount of cyclists this will bring to the second CicLAvia event in 2012. There will be rail transit service to downtown and to CicLAvia, from the north, east, south and now the expo line from the westside, in addition to the green line. The Expo line should be able to hall hundreds of people with their bicycles for this Sunday event.

    Unfortunately, the April 28th opening of the Expo line will miss the first CicLAvia event of 2012 on April 15th.

  2. Is it possible to rehash the upcoming bus service changes related to the Expo Line opening? Will they take effect on opening day, at the usual bus service shuffle in the summer, or some other point in time? Will there be bus service connecting western Venice Blvd. with the La Cienega station in lieu of a Culver City station?

  3. Great, hopefully the Culver City station would open before Anime Expo in July; one train ride from Westside to LA Convention Center would be awesome.

    “After the line opens, trains will be running every 12 minutes, according to Metro officials. The run time between 7th/Metro Center in downtown L.A. and the La Cienega station will be under 30 minutes — on test rides in both directions Friday, I clocked the ride time as averaging 26 minutes, although station stops were very brief.”

    One concern I have is that trains running every 12 minutes may not entice some West side riders to take the train as that can end up being as much as a 42 minute commute into Downtown LA which isn’t much different from driving on the I-10 even in heavy traffic. Since the Westside to Downtown LA commute is one of the busiest in California, if not in the nation, seeing the actual ridership numbers on the Expo Line will be an interesting watch.

    Hopefully in the future, with enough data collected, the frequencies can be increased to Asian levels of one train every three minutes or some form of limited/express services can be made during peak commuting times on the weekdays.

  4. Awesome! It’ll be good to hear once you have any idea of the operating plan at 7th Street / Metro Center.

    Will Blue and Expo line trains board from the same single platform? Will they separate with Blue on one and Expo on the other? Or will they operate like Union Station… where I can’t figure out if there is any sort of difference between boarding for Purple or Red Line or which platform.

  5. LA becomes a more functional place to live every year.

    With the introduction of the Ralph’s downtown and the continued expansion of the transit system, I just sold my car! I can now get everywhere I need/want to go with the Metro, a bike, or the flyaway bus from Union.

    At first I thought all the new apartments downtown were ugly, now I’m happy they are there. More people moving in and ditching their cars. I can’t wait to see where this city will be 20 years from now.

  6. This is certainly exciting news!

    Maybe I missed this, but I haven’t seen information regarding the parking structure at the La Cienega station. How many spaces are there? Will you have to pay to park? If so, what will the fare structure be? Discounts for pass holders and or a reserved section for pass holders?

  7. When will the 550 and 305 bus routes be changed / destroyed as a result of the opening of the Expo Line? Will there be a new bus route on La Cienega from SunSunday set Blvd to the Expo Line? If not, you will have forced me back into my car to the tune of 20 miles per workday. Thanks for nothing.

  8. This is so exciting. I live in Mar Vista (looking forward to the Exposition Station that will be a nice 5-10 minute walk from my house) and I am looking forward to this entire project!

    I agree with Y Fukuzawa’s comment:
    Y Fukuzawa on March 23, 2012 at 1:46 PM said:
    “One concern I have is that trains running every 12 minutes may not entice some West side riders to take the train as that can end up being as much as a 42 minute commute into Downtown LA which isn’t much different from driving on the I-10 even in heavy traffic. Since the Westside to Downtown LA commute is one of the busiest in California, if not in the nation, seeing the actual ridership numbers on the Expo Line will be an interesting watch.

    Hopefully in the future, with enough data collected, the frequencies can be increased to Asian levels of one train every three minutes or some form of limited/express services can be made during peak commuting times on the weekdays.”

    -It would make absolute sense to increase the time schedule frequency to one that is comparable to San Francisco, New York, Tokyo. Los Angeles can more than support a heavy rail system for public transportation. I support more stations, and more arrival/departure times.

  9. Great news.

    Hopefully the success of the Expo Line and what it can do with TOD will have an effect on getting the Subway to the Sea project moving along faster too.

  10. Very interesting to read about this new line. Used this system whilst is LA in December 2010 staying at the W Hotel above the Hollywood and Vine Station. Travelled downtown, and also out to Universal, and even further afield to Pasadena when I went to Huntington Gardens. Great to see an addition to the system.

  11. What a relief. Commuting from Claremont to Culver City has been killing me and this will ease my stress levels!

  12. Now all we need are trains that run till 3am on weekends so we can ride into Hollywood, see a movie, have a drink, dance at a club, and still get home without having to take a taxi. Please? Just Fridays maybe? (And more on-topic, “Hooray for the Expo line!”)

  13. We look forward to the extension of the Orange coming together “Ahead of Schedule” from Chatsworth, Great Job Metro…! Moving us right along ahead of schedule is seriously Great News too.. Thanks from all your Orange Line riders too..

  14. When the Gold Line extension opened, they brought out taiko drummers and dancers and stuff.
    I hope they can get the USC Marching Band or something for the Expo Line opening.

  15. This is great News!!! I can’t believe that the Expo Light Rail Line will actually and finally be opening at La Cienega station on Saturday April 28,2012 and summer for Culver City!!! I hope to see you on the line and I hope to see the New Expo Light Rail Line in SAFE operation, with ON-TIME, CONVENIENT service, CLEAN and inviting rail cars and stations, and with EXPRESS/RAPID SERVICE for commuters to downtown in the morning and evening. This is one step forward for LA’s transportation system, We Thank You for riding Metro, Next and final stop Culver City in 2012 and Santa Monica in 2016!!!”

  16. Hallelujah! It has taken sooooooooo long. I had been informed this project was initially supposed to be completed last August. I am just reading that the Culver City part will not be done till Summer. Unbelievable! They’re a year behind! God only knows when the Santa Monica Line will be finished! Have they even begun working on that? We desperately need a Wilshire Blvd. subway that goes from Wilshire/Vermont all the way down Wilshire to the city of Santa Monica. We need subways that go to The Grove, to Griffith Park, LA Zoo, Griffith Park Observatory, one down Los Feliz Blvd., subways to Glendale/The Americana, a subway from downtown LA to Disneyland. For a major city, our public transportation, especially when it comes to subways is so limited. Like other major cities, we need one direct train that goes from downtown LA to LAX (and stops at all the terminals). There is a lot of work that is needed to be done in order to improve LA’s public transportation system.

  17. Lisa,

    Welcome to the world of Los Angeles public transportation planning fans. We all want the same things you want as well, but there are financial constraints. (BTW I live in Los Feliz, and if you want to avoid Los Feliz BLVD, take Franklin to St. George, Left on Griffith Park, or make your first right past riverside and take that to Vermont).

    Los Angeles, as a major world city, developed during the 1950’s, when cheap oil and land was plentiful. Naturally, suburbia took off. Unlike NYC, Boston, Philly, or Chicago which had already been established as major metropolitan area before cars took off, They had heavy rail transit and a centralized downtown to plan to, and a modern subway system developed from that. Los Angeles had streetcars before (LA Railway and Pacific Electric), but they were hardly subways. They were painfully slow, and outdated. During the 1950’s suburbia craze, The Freeway, plus cheap gas was the future! The fact that you could cruise in a car was a much better option that the slow, stogy streetcar. We could have had a free monorail system, but with cheap gas and cool cars, why would we?

    But we put our eggs in one basket. We developed a transit system that favored the car over bus. We spread out. We thought cheap oil would last forever. It doesn’t, and now we have to play catch up.

    In conclusion, our city is a victim of the times. It will be painful, but we will have to adapt.

  18. Creating new transportation lines is much harder to do these days than it was back 30-40 yrs ago. But considering the amount of stations you get in 6 yrs time of construction, it’s actually a pretty good deal. In Montreal, it took them 4 yrs to build just 3 stations, and before that the metro line hasn’t been touched in 20 yrs! Even since then, there are still discussions on what to do next and nothing will be done for another few years.

    L.A., at least you got a long term plan that doesn’t linger endlessly through bureaucracy. Your Expo line is actually getting done. Be patient, good things will come 🙂

  19. This expo line is just a small step, it currently goes nowhere, that line will get a lot of passengers once it goes to santa monica, hopefully that will happen before I turn 40! (I’m 29 now) They were talking about building the expo line when I worked for metro back when I was 21, I wish I still worked there that was good money. I really wish when they were creating the subway there weren’t such a high opposition to it and I think the ross explosion killed it, any legislation that comes up to fund for projects like these i’ll definitely approve, LA needs more trains!

  20. I’m a bit worried about how bad the 733 will be between there and Sepulveda. It’s bad enough now.