Harriet the tunneling machine arrives at MLK Jr. Station (again!)

The tunnel boring machine that is digging the second of the two rail tunnels under Crenshaw Boulevard arrived at the future Martin Luther King, Jr. Station last week. The first rail tunnel was completed last year and then Harriet was taken apart and reassembled to dig the second tunnel from north to south — starting at the future Expo/Crenshaw Station (which will be the transfer point to the Expo Line) and then making her way toward Leimert Park.

Next stop: Leimert Park Station and at that time, Harriet’s job will be done.

Click here to see a gallery of other recent photos of construction up and down the Crenshaw/LAX corridor. There’s a lot of progress. The project is projected to open in late 2019 and is funded primarily by Measure R, the half-cent sales tax approved by Los Angeles County voters in 2008.

Here’s a map of the project for those who are unfamiliar:

4 replies

  1. Almost seems like half of the line is going to be travelling at grade with vehicular traffic, might be better than most lines…………………….

    • This will be one of the most grade-separated lines in the entire Metro Rail light rail system, little more than half of the line is above or below grade—Second only to the Green Line. None of the lines travel with mixed flow traffic like a streetcar in San Francisco or Portland, you have to give them some credit there. Crenshaw Line will only have a few un-gated cross traffic type intersections that resemble the low points of the Expo Line (or, Gold Line for that matter) at most.

  2. Then, Harriet could go to work and help out at the Regional Connector site, huh?

    And, I would reckon that the diameter of the tunnel boring machine used for the Purple Line subway would need to be LARGER to accommodate heavy rail trains?

    • Hi Morris,

      Unfortunately, Regional Connector’s TBM will have to go it alone. Many aspects of TBMs are built specifically for the soil conditions they will dig through, so they aren’t often interchangeable.

      Anna Chen
      Writer, The Source