Go Metro to Made in America this Labor Day Weekend

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15-0360_map_Project_MIA_walking_final.inddMade in America takes place at Grand Park downtown Los Angeles on Saturday and Sunday. If you’re heading to the last big music festival of this summer, make it easy on yourself and Go Metro.

Metro Rail and both the Orange Line and Silver Line will be running late night service both nights, meaning the last trains and buses for those lines will be about 2 a.m. Please see timetables for specific information about each line — especially if you need to transfer.

The last Purple Line train leaves Union Station at 2:02 a.m. both nights.

The last Red Line train leaves Union Station at 2:12 a.m. both nights.

The last Gold Line train to Pasadena leaves Little Tokyo/Arts District Station at 2:03 a.m. on both nights. The last Gold Line train to East Los Angeles leaves Little Tokyo/Arts District Station at 2:16 a.m. both nights.

If your ticket has you entering from the North Gates: take the Red, Purple, Silver or Gold Line to Union Station. Exit toward Alameda Street, then walk south on Los Angeles Street to Temple Street.

If your ticket has you entering from the South Gates: take the Red or Purple Line to Pershing Square Station and exit toward 4th Street, then walk two blocks north on Hill Street. You can also take the Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station and walk west on 1st Street toward City Hall.

Civic Center/Grand Park Station will be closed during Made in America due to event security. Trains will not stop at the station. ADA access to the concert area will be provided from Union Station. Pick up/drop off locations include:

  • Union Station Patsaouras Plaza (Bay 2)
  • 2nd Street and Main Street (during festival hours)
  • On Temple Street between Hill and Grand Avenue in front of Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration (eastbound).

For the ADA Shuttle schedule, click here. Proposed Made in America street closures and bus detours are posted here. Some bus detours begin on Friday, August 29, due to event set up.

Transit pro-tip: load your TAP card with round-trip cash fare or a Day Pass before heading out. A Day Pass is good from first tap until 3 a.m. the next day. For those who want to park and ride on the Expo Line, parking will be extremely limited at Culver City Station and La Cienega/Jefferson Station due to the USC football game on Saturday. Consider parking at Expo/Crenshaw Station on Saturday only. There is no parking at Expo/Crenshaw Station on Sundays.

End of an era: Metro to retire its last high-floor buses on August 30

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This type of high-floor bus, used by the transit industry for more than 100 years, required bus patrons to negotiate several steps before boarding.

This type of high-floor bus, used by the transit industry for more than 100 years, required bus patrons to negotiate steps before boarding.

Today’s Metro buses feature low-floor designs for faster, easier boardings and alightings.

Today’s Metro buses feature low-floor designs for faster, easier boardings and alightings.

Adios bus stairs, here comes the “Low Rider.”

Bus riders in Los Angeles County will no longer have to climb stairs to board a Metro Bus on any of Metro’s 170 bus lines beginning August 30. That’s the date when Metro will be officially retiring its very last high-floor transit buses and replacing them with “low-floor” buses.

That’s a notable milestone in the history of local transit. High-floor buses were employed by transit operators since the inception of motorized transit buses and Metro, as well as its predecessor agencies, have operated high-floor buses for decades. Climbing steps to board a bus has been the common experience of multiple generations of bus riders.

“Los Angeles, as well as most of the world, has had high floor buses for well over 100 years,” said Richard Famighetti, maintenance operations manager for Metro Divisions 6 and 7. “We are marking the end of a significant era that helped characterize public transportation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Retiring these buses is a truly a historic change for Metro.”

(Video after the jump!)

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Go Metro to the East LA Parade and Festival on September 7

East L.A. hosts the 68th Annual Mexican Independence Day Parade and Festival on Saturday, September 7. Celebrate Mexican Independence at the “oldest and largest Hispanic parade in the country,” followed by a family-friendly day of culture, entertainment, and fun. Go Metro for stress-free transportation to the heart of the action, and take advantage of a special festival perk for transit riders.

The East L.A. Parade begins at 10:30 a.m. and travels down Cesar E. Chavez Avenue from Mednik to Gage Avenue. At noon, the celebration returns to Cesar Chavez between Mednik and 1st Street until 6 p.m. Both parade and festival are free and open to the public. Last year’s attendance was approximately 20,000! (All the more reason to Go Metro and avoid the hunt for parking.)

Show your valid TAP card at the Radio Centro Booth near the main stage and receive a raffle ticket for four tickets to a major theme park in Southern California. The winners will be announced throughout the day and you must be present to win.

To arrive at the East L.A. Parade and Festival via Metro, take the Gold Line to East L.A./Civic Center Station and walk 10 minutes north on Mednik to Cesar E Chavez Avenue. Or board the Metro Rapid 770 to Cesar E Chavez/Mednik. Trip Planner or Google Transit can help you plan your best route.

Transportation headlines, Wednesday, August 27

Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on TwitterFacebook and Instagram. Pick your social media poison! 

ART OF TRANSIT: An Expo Line train leaving 7th/Metro Station last week. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

ART OF TRANSIT: An Expo Line train leaving 7th/Metro Station last week. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

City nears purchase of key parcel for L.A. River revitalization (Streetsblog LA)

The city of Los Angeles is moving along the purchase of a 41-acre piece of property that sits between Rio de Los Angeles State Park and the Los Angeles River, reports Joe Linton. The site of former railroad yards, the property has been in limbo for years and has some soil contamination issues. Still, it’s a key acquisition as the federal Army Corps of Engineers likely would not do river restoration work on privately-owned land. This really helpful post includes aerial views, maps and renderings.

This is really great news — this is a big chunk of land along the river and it’s great to see the city moving forward on acquiring such parcels. Although this isn’t directly a transit-related story, I can also imagine a future for the area — perhaps a couple decades off — with a partially restored river between downtown L.A. and Glendale lined with parks and perhaps some new residential units. The area could be connected to DTLA via bike paths, Metrolink (Glendale Station) and the Gold Line’s existing Chinatown and Lincoln/Cypress stations.

BART discusses ending free lifetime travel perk for Board Members (MassTransit)

Actually, the headline is a little inaccurate: the family members of Board Members get free travel for life, too! The Board is going to consider ending that perk at its meeting Thursday. Some say it’s a little over the top, others say it gives them the chance to ride the system and see how it’s performing.

Obama pursuing climate accord in lieu of treaty (New York Times)

In an effort to steer around Congressional approval of a treaty — which has proven nearly impossible — President Obama is trying to forge an “agreement” between nations to lower their greenhouse gas emissions. It’s uncertain how much an agreement would be legally binding and how much would be voluntary. In the U.S., the transportation sector is responsible for about 28 percent of greenhouse gas emissions responsible for global warming. As we’ve noted before walking, biking and taking transit instead of driving alone are good ways to lower your carbon footprint.

Eyes on the street: ‘Mad Men’ writer Tom Smuts bikes to the Emmys (StreetsblogLA)

The best part: he did it to raise awareness of the need for better bike infrastructure and to promote cycling. And he did it in a suit.

BBB benches not coming back (Santa Monica Daily Press)

The old aluminum benches won’t be returning says the bus agency — as they encourage loitering. The new bus stops that Big Blue Bus has been rolling out in Santa Monica have inspired some complaints. The agency says they’ll be refining the design.

Grizzlies gain ground (High Country News)

America has been sliced and diced by roads and development and the grizzly bear that graces California’s state flag is pretty much relegated to the areas around Yellowstone and Glacier national parks. A small population is also still present in the northern Cascade Mountains of Washington State and the federal government is beginning a process of deciding whether to boost populations by possibly transplanting bears from elsewhere.

Earlier this year, the group The Center for Biological Diversity filed a petition asking the feds to consider that viable bear habitat remains throughout the West, including California. I can’t imagine grizzlies ever being reintroduced to populous California — grizzlies are far more aggressive than the black bears living here now. Nonetheless, this is an interesting story raising questions. As our urban areas continue to grow in the Western U.S., the question remains how much room will there be for native wildlife in the sections of the West that are owned by the federal government (National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, state parks).

I doubt the folks who regularly comment on this blog could care less, but I suspect there’s a much larger readership here that likes to mull the big picture.

 

Update: North Hollywood Red Line Station is now reopen

Final Update 4:03 p.m.: Police have finished their inquiry at North Hollywood Station, and the Metro Red Line is now resuming normal service between Universal/Studio City and North Hollywood Station. Thank you to all affected customers for your patience this afternoon.

The Metro Red Line North Hollywood Station is currently closed as police investigate a suspicious object. This means there is no service between Universal/Studio City and North Hollywood Stations, and that all North Hollywood-bound trains are returning to Union Station at Universal/Studio City.

Metro is providing supplemental shuttle bus service between the affected stations. At Universal/Studio City Station, shuttle buses are departing from the bus plaza. At North Hollywood Station, buses depart from Lankershim Blvd. Metro customers utilizing this service should anticipate delays of up to 20 minutes until further notice.

We will continue to provide updates here at The Source and on twitter @metrolosangeles and @metroLAalerts until the investigation is resolved.

Metro Expo Line the best ticket for USC gridiron action

Photo by Neon Tommy, via Flickr creative commons.

USC in action at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum during the 2012 season. Photo by Neon Tommy, via Flickr creative commons.

The 2014 college football season kicks off at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Saturday, August 30, when the USC Trojans host the Fresno State Bulldogs and fans are encouraged to avoid snarling traffic delays by riding the Metro Expo Line to the game.

Saturday marks the third year that Metro has offered expanded Expo Line service to USC home football games. More Expo Line trains are assigned to the event and they will run more frequently to get football fans to and from the game safely and efficiently.

Click on the map to see a larger version.

Click on the map to see a larger version.

“During the first two years of Expo Line service to USC football, Metro moved between 8,000 and 9,000 fans to each of the home games representing about ten percent of all the people attending,” Metro CEO Art Leahy said. “Metro customers not only get quick, convenient and safe transport, they won’t have to shell out $20 or more for parking near the Coliseum.”

Metro officials encourage football fans to try the Expo Line especially on this Labor Day weekend as tens of thousands of concert goers are expected to fill downtown-area freeways and surface streets to attend the Made in America Festival at Grand Park. Music fans are also encouraged to use the Metro Rail system to avoid congestion and save time.

(More information and the Metro & Metrolink rail map after the jump!)

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Transportation headlines, Tuesday, August 26

Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on TwitterFacebook and Instagram. Pick your social media poison! 

Jimmy Kimmel wasn’t the only person attending the Emmy Awards on Monday who took Metro to the Nokia Theatre. The above photos were taken at the Pico Station shared by the Blue Line and Expo Line and located one block from Staples Center and L.A. Live. Photos by Josh Southwick/Metro.

Jimmy Kimmel takes the subway to Emmy Awards in downtown L.A. (L.A. Times)

Pretty amazing to see the social media hoo-ha that breaks out when a celeb steps onto mass transit, particularly in a city that (undeservedly, IMO) is not exactly known for its local rail system. That said, it’s a nice shot of free PR for Metro and if Jimmy Kimmel can be an urban pioneer and figure out how to get a TAP card from the ticket machines, so can many others! See our post with his tweets and some reaction from riders.

BART’s early warning earthquake system could have broader applications (San Francisco Appeal)

The system that has been in testing since 2012 provides a 10-second warning that a temblor will occur, which agency officials say is enough time to significantly slow trains to help prevent derailments. Funding a broader system could also help slow motorists, warn surgeons and give just enough time to others to make a difference, say supporters of the system. Seems to me that any kind of warning is better than none.

Reworked projects to bring 320 apartments to the Arts District (Downtown News) 

The development was actually downsized after community members protested that it was too large for the Arts District. If the project near the intersection of Santa Fe Avenue and 7th Street gets built, it’s another big boost in the number of people living in the Arts District — particularly with the large One Santa Fe development nearing completion. Reporter and transit activist Roger Rudick responded to the news on Facebook with this: “If we don’t get that subway station in the Division 20 Yards and 6th Street we’re going to be trapped back here.”

As some folks know, Metro’s subway maintenance yards are along the Los Angeles River in the Arts District — that’s where the trains go when they’re out of service at Union Station. There has been occasional talk over the years about building a platform for the subway in the yards to serve the Arts District. Nothing has happened yet but as the neighborhood grows, I’m guessing there will be more demand for subway service — it could be an easy ride through Union Station to the rest of downtown and beyond — along with some inevitable concerns about the subway bringing too many people into the neighborhood. We’ll see… :)

L.A.’s demand-based parking moving in exactly the right direction (KCET)

City of Los Angeles officials say that their ExpressPark Program in DTLA is resulting in slightly lower average prices and more parking spaces being occupied. There’s some doubt as to whether that’s because of the demand-based system that adjusts meter prices or a reflection of an improving local economy and more people driving downtown. Nonetheless, the system will soon expand to Westwood and it’s the kind of thing that academics such as UCLA’s Donald Shoup have long been advocating.

Lost in America (New York Times)

Columnist Frank Bruni riffs on recent survey results showing that Americans have record low views when it comes to the federal government. More troubling, Bruni writes, is that Americans no longer believe that their children’s generation will fare better than their own, a reversal of a long-held American dream. Excerpt:

And it suggests that this isn’t just about the economy. It’s about fear. It’s about impotence. We can’t calm the world in the way we’d like to, can’t find common ground and peace at home, can’t pass needed laws, can’t build necessary infrastructure, can’t, can’t, can’t.

In the Journal/NBC poll, 60 percent of Americans said that we were a nation in decline. How sad. Sadder still was this: Nowhere in the survey was there any indication that they saw a method or a messenger poised to arrest it.

It’s a tough one. I’m 48 and feels to me that the world has been in some type of turmoil at very regular intervals throughout my life. On the home front, feels to me that most people I know have very little interest or enthusiasm when it comes to Washington D.C.