A Better Blue Line: test demonstration of track work in downtown Long Beach to start June 9

Fresh out of the paint shop, this rail car is refurbished inside and out. Next stop: components overhaul or replacement.

Fresh out of the paint shop, this rail car is refurbished inside and out. Next stop: components overhaul or replacement.

As part of the ongoing work to upgrade and refurbish the Blue Line, a test demonstration of work on the rail tracks will take place in the downtown Long Beach area from Monday, June 9 through Friday, June 20. Regular train service will NOT be affected.

This work is being done as a test operation in preparation for the major work on the tracks to start later this year. The work includes lifting of the track, insertion of rubber boots and use of asphalt grinders. Residents or anyone traveling in the area near 8th Street and Pacific Avenue are asked to stay away for safety reasons.

Work activity is subject to weather conditions. Emergency access will be maintained. For more information on the Blue Line upgrades, visit metro.net/bluelineupgrades.

10 replies

  1. Apparently, Metro, in its typically paternalistic fashion, thinks that it is the sole repository of wisdom about what repairs and improvements are actually needed to ameliorate the outrageously bad service provided by the Blue Line–which is now even less reliable than existing (competing) north/south Metro bus lines.between Long Beach & DT L.A.

    Rather than soliciting input from those (the actual passengers) who suffer every day from the grave deficiencies of the Blue Line–or, Heaven forfend, holding public hearings on how to improve this service (as would happen in a real democracy)–Metro seems determined just to plow ahead with its own in-house ideas about what is needed for this project, continuing to rely instead upon the very same staff that designed this pathetically inadequate system in the first place. (Remember two-car platforms?)

    Much more than anything else, the Blue Line needs to be provided with extended station platforms to accommodate longer trains, because apparently it is no longer possible for Metro to decrease further the headway between trains, or otherwise to accommodate the drastic surfeit of passengers who have to use this rail line for commuting, Especially at peak periods, both mornings and evenings, Blue Line cars are often so overcrowded with standing passengers that the A/C systems no longer can keep them cool, and Metro seems unable to keep its trains running anywhere near the scheduled times.

    I find that “competing” north/south bus lines are more reliable, if theoretically slower, than the Blue Line.

  2. Fresh out of the paint shop? I was under the impression that Metro would be upgrading the exterior of these cars from the 80s yellow stripe to the “smiling” sunshine yellow, grey, and black design with the White “Metro” letters on the side. Is that not happening anymore?

  3. That Blue Line train is fresh out of the paint shop? I hope you’re mistaken.
    What happened to the new Silver paint scheme? You proudly shows off the one “test train” painted like that and then Metro half-assed another train (new silver paint with the old gold stripes)… now we are back to painting these with the old white and gold stripes scheme (that hasn’t been used on the buses for a decade now)?
    Seriously Metro, how hard is it to pick a new paint scheme and stick with it?

  4. @jeremystutes & Ricky Courtney: Clicking on the photo reveals that they just reposted a photo from 2 years ago. Apparently they reused the photo without realizing or without choosing to alter the caption.

  5. I read a comment before about the need for Metro to extended the Blue Line station platforms to accommodate longer trains due to the high ridership level. Has Metro addressed this issue? Is it possible for Metro to extend the platforms to accommodate longer trains?

  6. Michelle Bradley – That is not Long Beach but is in fact one of the side tracks in the Metro Blue Line Yard. (Looking east from the blow down and paint shops.)

    Burbox – providing longer trains (ie, 4 or even 5 consist sets) requires more than just extending the existing paltforms. It would require an assessment (and likely) the replacement of the just recently upgraded Traction Power Substation system including the feed wire systems and various other aspects of the Traction Power system to accomadate the increased power requirements.

    In addition, it would require the evaluation of rated speeds for the various track locations as a 5 consist set does not slow and break the same as a 2 or 3 consist set, so breaking distances and associated speeds would need to be studied and evaluated. (Which could ultimately impact headways in a negative manner.)

    Lastly, in addition to all of the above, longer trains will require more on track equipment – which take time and capital to procure.

    One final item – from what I understand, once the Regional Connector is completed, it is being designed for trains in each direction every 2 1/2 minutes at peaks. That would mean a 5 minute headway on the Blue Line -a minute shorter than the current 6 minute headway.

  7. Burbox,

    Not to mention it is impossible for the Blue Line platforms to be extended any longer. They would be sticking into the streets.

  8. And if the Blue Line cannot be extended any longer and transit ridership keeps increasing, what’s there to do?