How We Roll, Jan. 11: plugging the gaps?

Art of Transit: 

The new Monrovia maintenance campus for the Gold Line on Friday evening. The Gold Line extension to Arcadia, Monrovia, Duarte, Irwindale and Azusa opens on March 5. Testing is underway. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

The new Monrovia maintenance campus for the Gold Line on Friday evening. The Gold Line extension to Arcadia, Monrovia, Duarte, Irwindale and Azusa opens on March 5. Testing is underway. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

The Expo Line runs every 12 minutes for most of the day and every 10 minutes at peak hours. Here’s the timetable — it might help plan ahead to avoid long waits. One of the benefits of the Regional Connector project — which will link the Blue, Expo and Gold Lines in downtown Los Angeles — is that it will allow Expo Line trains to run more often as 7th/Metro Center Station will no longer be a dead-end where trains have to reverse course.

And, of course, this reminder: the Little Tokyo/Arts District Station on the Gold Line closed Friday evening in order to start building the tunnel portal for the Regional Connector. More about the closure here, as well as info on the bus shuttle between Union Station, Little Tokyo and Pico/Aliso Station.

Closing 2.8-mile gap in Norwalk could smooth regional commute (LAT)

There’s a renewed interest among officials and planners in plugging the gap between the Green Line’s Norwalk Station — next to the eastern end of the 105 freeway — and the Metrolink station in Norwalk. The Green Line is mostly an east-west line and Norwalk is on Metrolink’s north-south Orange County Line, but getting between the two rail lines can require a bus ride up to an hour.

As the article notes, the idea of filling the gap was considered back in the 1990s but “Neither project [an aerial rail line or underground rail line] was built because of funding difficulties, potential construction complications and opposition from Norwalk neighborhoods that would be adversely affected by the extension.” 

On the subject of gaps…

Closing the Exposition Bikeway gap (Streetsblog LA)

An Expo Line test train running through the Northvale trench adjacent to Cheviot Hills. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

An Expo Line test train running through the Northvale trench adjacent to Cheviot Hills. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

When the Expo Line opens this spring, there will be a .7-mile gap in the adjacent bike path between Motor Avenue and Overland Avenue, a segment of track known as the Northvale Trench (shown in the pic above). This stretch of the bike path was dropped from the Expo Line extension project because of delays resulting from legal challenges to the rail line.

But the city of L.A. is trying to get it built and is hosting a community open house at the Palms-Rancho Park Branch Library (2920 Overland Ave, Los Angeles) on Wednesday (Jan. 13) from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

We saw the first hyperloop tubes in the desert (CNN)

About that decent rail connection gap between L.A. and S.F…

Skies of concrete: life in the leftover places (New Yorker Photo Booth blog)

Life under a bridge in London. Photo by GISELA ERLACHER, via Newyorker.com.

Life under a bridge in London. Photo by GISELA ERLACHER, via Newyorker.com.

Bridges fill gaps and this photo essay is an interesting look at the ways land is used under giant bridges in places around the world — most of the pics are from Europe or China.

Japan keeps this train station running for one passenger — a school student (Citylab) 

Interesting rail gap-plugger in northern Japan in this day and age. I believe in days of yore it wasn’t completely unusual for trains to stop at all sorts of rural places to serve relatively few people. Good pics.

This bike poncho could be the perfect rainy day accessory for cyclists (TreeHugger)

For the El Nino-minded cyclist, perhaps.

***

I’m sure Riders/Readers of a Certain Age, like me, when they heard the news this morning of David Bowie’s passing. So much of what he did was a staple of 1970s radio and, as the ’80s dawned, MTV. His stuff was, and remains, so very strikingly original; as Hilton Als writes in the New Yorker this morning, “he always got there first.”

Here are a couple of my favorites and I count “Under Pressure” — recorded originally with Queen — as one of the great rock songs of all-time.

Two of my favorites from David Bowie…

KCRW’s “Morning Becomes Electric” is playing a lot of Bowie music this morning for those listening online during their travels.

Recent How We Rolls: 

Jan. 8: the art of transit, transit to future L.A. Super Bowls?, an angry scree about cyclists vs motorists.

Jan. 7: A snowy owl on a traffic cam and is Highland Park finally (ahem) going to get popular?

Jan. 6: untransit-friendly stadium proposals and our poll asking if would you Go Metro to see the Chargers, Raiders or Rams in Los Angeles.

Jan. 5: the city of Santa Monica wants to build fencing to keep people off the Expo Line tracks.

Jan. 4: no love of freeways from one big L.A. media outlet and a fancypants new development along the Expo Line.

Dec. 31: a few thoughts on transpo trends in 2015.

I’m on Twitter and have a photography blog. Questions or ideas for How We Roll? Email me.

 

 

 

 

 

7 replies

  1. Regarding Car Sales, I think it has more to do with population that car obsession. More cars sold to significantly more people; however ownership per capita is lower IIRC which could be related to post recession frugality and renewed interest in urban living.

    Regarding Norwalk, where do I sign a petition to continue the green line in bridging that gap? I think in a few short years there could be tremendous demand for that connection for people traveling to LAX and PV. I make the trip often when I visit family in OC and Riverside and that literal shortcoming is huge inconvenience

  2. Regarding “flag-stop” service:

    The Alaska Railroad still offers flagstop service between Talkeetna and Hurricane. My understanding is that all one needs to do for a pick-up from either the Hurricane Turn or the Aurora between those two points is to find a spot that has good visibility within the train’s normal stopping distance, and wave a flag of specified size and color as soon as the approaching train is visible. For drop-off, one simply needs to notify the conductor far enough in advance to safely stop the train.

    The downside is that because of the nature of flagstop service, schedules for those trains are rough estimates at best.

    Personally, on the Alaska Railroad, I’ve only ridden the Coastal Classic between Seward and Anchorage (once one-way, and once round trip), and the Denali Star, between Anchorage and Denali National Park (once round trip). But I found the service to be excellent.

  3. just want to point out the missed opportunity by LAT copy editors on the Green Line Metrolink connection story

    Headline totally should been a pun: No Metro link for OC Rail Commuters

    >>see what I did there

  4. How many new railcars has Metro accepted? Based on the picture I see 6 sets but I see 1007 in the foreground so that would be at least 7?

    • Hi Donny;

      I’m not sure as of this moment. Keep in mind that some new cars may be over on the Expo 2 tracks, too.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  5. This makes Manhattan Beach to Fullerton an actuality. This also allows more people from south east L.A. and points west along the Greenline to reach UCR much easier than today. Heck, Marines to LAX from pendelton too.

  6. Amen to the Norwalk connection. Myself I’m waiting for somebody to bring back that old (Greyhound) Santa Monica-Malibu-Ventura bus, but I suspect it will be a long wait!

    Remember that gaps can be “temporal” as well as spatial, times that transit should run but doesn’t. That could be a line that doesn’t start early enough in the morning, doesn’t run late enough at night, only runs peak hours when it should be all day etc.