Transportation headlines, Thursday, Oct. 4

Here is a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by us and the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the Library’s Headlines blog, which you can also access via email subscription orRSS feed.

Miss Traffic Offers Tips for Taking Bikes On Metro During CicLAvia (Metro via YouTube)

I love this advice from fictional (but beautiful) Miss Traffic who reminds us how to use Metro for this Sunday’s event: “Take a break from traffic during CicLAvia, LA’s free celebration of public spaces. And whether you bike, jog or picnic at CicLAvia, Metro takes you to the heart of the action.”

How Barclay’s Center Opening Caused Subway Surge (Transportation Nation)

This should interest Farmers Field proponents. It turns out you can have a 19,000 seat NBA arena in a crowded residential neighborhood with almost no dedicated parking and still not snarl traffic during a sold-out show … at least for one opening night concert.

L.A. is Smart After All! Expanded TIFIA Changing the Loan Game for Transit (Next American City)

Here’s another story praising L.A. for moving from car capital of the country to transit-directed region through passage of Measure R and creation of America Fast Forward. It’s nothing we don’t already know but we sure love being praised for it. 

Peapod.com Opens 100 Digital Rail Station Grocery Stores (Metro Magazine)

Virtual grocery store company Peapod.com is launching shopping sites at commuter rail stations in Boston, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C. and Chicago. All commuters have to do is send in their orders during their train commutes via iPones, iPads or Android phones and schedule home deliveries for next day or even several days or weeks in advance.

11 replies

  1. My concern with Farmers Field parking is this scenario.

    I love hockey. Me and my friends routinely go to see the Kings games. But getting there from where I live in MacArthur Park requires us to make a transfer at 7th/Metro to the Expo and Blue Lines. We each have to pay $6.00 roundtrip using Metro to get to Staples Center. I mean it’s only MacArthur Park to Staples Center! Even considering parking, we’re better off just taking our friend’s minivan and splitting the cost of parking among each of us.

    There’s a lot of people living near the surrounding areas who don’t see public transit as a viable option because of this. Paying $6.00 roundtrip for a short ride just because it involves a transfer when others from faraway who can get there on one train ride for half the cost is not helping people abandon the car fully. It’s helping for long trips, but for short trips that involves transfers, we’re just carpooling so the roads are still gridlocked in that area.

    That’s the concern I have if Farmer’s Field is built without parking spaces. It needs to have ample parking space to cater for people who live close by and chooses to carpool to get there because it’s ends up being cheaper than taking Metro. Either that or at least a huge and safe bicycle stalls.

    Or, if Metro is serious about making everyone in LA to start using public transit, it needs to review its fare policies to encourage people like us to use Metro more than the carpooling option. I’m realistic to understand that there’s no way we can have a single train ride from anywhere in LA to another place in LA. But if that’s the reality, I think Metro needs to make serious reform to its fare policies. Because who living in MacArthur Park area is going to use Metro if it costs $6.00 roundtrip just to get from MacArthur Park to Staples Center because it involves a transfer?

  2. Hector, while I agree with the point you are trying to make… you should never have to pay more than $5 in a day where you have pre-planned your trip like you do for the Kings games. A Metro Day Pass is $5, and that will let you transfer and take as many rides as you want. Buy the day pass and at least save yourself $1… then use Metro after the game for more fun (or before!)

    Like I said… I do agree with the ultimate point you’re trying to make though.

  3. Steve White,

    Even if a Metro day pass at $5, for 6 people it’s still $30 total.

    Parking near that area averages around $10-15 per vehicle depending on venues. Divided that among 6 people in our minivan pool to Staples Center games, it comes to only $1.50-$2.50 per person.

    Metro only looks at “one-person per car” as a basis that public transit is cheap because you save on parking. In reality, people will just carpool and divide the parking lot fee among others. In the end, it comes out cheaper than everyone paying $5 for a day pass.

  4. This really highlights the issue with transfers on Metro, and it’s going to get crazier when Regional Connector and Gold Line Foothill are done. Long Beach to Azusa round trip $3.00, MacArthur Park to Pico round trip $6.00!

  5. Hector S,

    You and your friends could just simply take the train 7th Metro and Walk to Staples from there. The walk is not very long and is rather pleasant. Plus you avoid all the congestion that surrounds the pico station after a game.

  6. Hector,

    If everyone carpooled 6 people wherever they went, LA would be pretty well off traffic-wise. So either-way, I commend you for travelling so responsibly!

    If you do want to bring the cost of Metro down though, I would say just take the Purple line to 7th St / Metro Center and then don’t take the Blue/Expo lines one stop South. The walk is no more than 10 minutes and is often actually faster than waiting for the next train… (You can also take the 28 bus down Olympic or the 14/37 that goes down Beverly and then Grand, depending on where exactly in Macarthur Park you are)

  7. This, is a good example of how Metro’s fare policies are flawed and requires the need to move to distance based fares.

    Going from MacArthur Park to Pico should only cost $1.50 max because of the short distance, regardless there’s a transfer involved or not.

    Every other city in the world that gets transit right is built upon such a fare structure. It’s time Metro stopped trying to re-invent the wheel and move to tap-in/tap-out distance based fares like Tokyo, Hong Kong, Taipei, and Singapore.

    Shorter rides (regardless transfers are done) cheaper fares, longer rides (again, regardless transfers are done) the higher the fare. It’s only common sense.

  8. Matt D,
    As was already pointed out – nothing should ever cost more than $5 per day, really, because you can just get a day pass. If you’re planning your trips out as hector and most others do, simply buy a day pass to save some cash. I don’t subscribe to the “transfers will become crazy” because it will still really just be $5/day. 🙂

  9. Collin,

    Who’s to say that the Day Pass will even exist in ten years? Or that it will remain at $5? Nothing is set in stone.

    Look at NYMTA: they got rid of unlimited ride day passes. And Metro LOVES following in the footsteps of apply NYMTA logic to LA.

  10. I think it’s unfair, even at a day pass rate of $5, when it’s so closeby but it involves a transfer.

    A person in Long Beach can go all the way to Staples Center for $1.50 because they’re lucky to have one line going all the way there.

    But a person living in MacArthur Park to Staples Center has to pay a day pass at $5.00 because the person needs a transfer. In order to save money, that person is forced to walk the last mile.

    The system is flawed. We need a better fare structure.

  11. I agree, distance based fare seems to make a lot more sense than the way things work now. I just wish Metro offered a free bus transfer for a couple of hours (like SF Muni) to make local trips more economical and attractive to those of us who are living ‘car-lite’ in LA.