Purple Line Extension tunneling machines arrive in So Cal and polls open for art and naming contest

Over the next several weeks parts of the Purple Line Extension tunnel boring machines (TBMs) will begin arriving at the Ports of Long Beach, Los Angeles and Galveston. From the ports, the various parts will be loaded onto large trucks and takento a holding facility until the Wilshire/La Brea station is ready to receive them.

In the run-up to actual tunneling, Metro invites Los Angeles County residents to participate in this historic moment by casting their votes in the Purple Line Extension TBM Art and Naming contest. A group of five finalists for each contest has been chosen by local community leaders.

TBM Art Contest Finalists:

TBM Naming Contest Finalists:

Castor & Pollux

Elsie & Soyeon

Abeona & Adiona

Rosa & Milagros

Genesis & Nova

The polls will be open thru January 31, 2018. Cast your votes here!

The winning art and name will be displayed on the side of the huge TBMs during the Purple Line Extension unveiling ceremony that is anticipated to happen this spring. 

The winners of the contest will also receive over $350 in prizes, a commemorative Metro TAP card with the winning art and names, a behind-the-scenes tour and more. 

The Purple Line Extension will extend the subway from its current terminus at Wilshire/Western for nine miles to Westwood. The project is being constructed in three sections. The first, which is under construction, is 3.9 miles from Wilshire/Western to Wilshire/La Cienega with new stations at Wilshire/La Brea, Wilshire/Fairfax and Wilshire/La Cienega. The first section is projected to open in late 2023.

9 replies

    • Different contractors run phase one and two, so both will probably purchase TBMs for each phase.

      Additionally TBMs are customized for soil conditions and phase run is tunneling next to tar pits. Phase two won’t have tar pits

      Finally phase one is really long, and waiting for the phase one TBMs would severely slow down the entire project.

      I believe the plan is for the phase one tunnels to start at la brea and tunnel east to the western ave tie in. This will take about a year.

      The TBMs will then be extracted from western returned to la brea and the. Tunnel west to la Cienega.

      At around the same time the phase one TBMs are being moved, two additional TBMs for phase two will be inserted at la Cienega to tunnel west to century city

      So two-three years from now the purple line should have four simultaneously running TBMs

      It is possible the two phase one TBMs could be used for phase three to accelerate the project. But it’s also possible we might need a fifth or sixth TBM to accelerate the project.

  1. Given the line’s color, I wonder why Barney & Baby Bop didn’t make the cut. Perhaps this is a good thing, indicating that fewer young minds are under the influence of this character. Probably just Metro lawyers protecting someone’s IP.

  2. Why are the intermediate results hidden? If someone wants to motivate their friends to vote, it is easier to do if their favourite is running behind.

  3. Quit monkeying around. Just start the damn thing and stop wasting time and money on naming a stupid machine.

    • Now now Robert temper temper. Remember it was us that made it impossible to finish. Thanks to some people who shall remain nameless, do we now find ourselves waiting and paying far more for this project.