Transportation headlines, special edition: LA Streetsblog’s post “You can’t fix traffic, you are the traffic” is a must read

Traffic on the 405. Photo by malingering, via Flickr creative commons.

Traffic on the 405. Photo by malingering, via Flickr creative commons.

If you have three minutes to spare, I highly recommend Damien Newton's post in response to an opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times griping about Westside traffic.

In the Times, editorial writer Carla Hall complained that Los Angeles City Council candidates for the Westside seat (11th district) didn't say much about fixing traffic at a recent Streetsblog forum. She's a longtime Brentwood resident and motorist and doesn't think transit and cycling improvements will help improve her commute to downtown Los Angeles.

I thought the article was intended to be more provocative than informative — it's hard to blame Westside motorists for venting/blowing their stack. Damien apparently thought likewise.

I think the issue that we both had was the notion that traffic can be fixed solely by focusing on traffic. Unfortunately, there's not a lot of evidence from around the world that traffic gets “fixed” — chokepoints can be smoothed, roads can be managed differently (i.e. the ExpressLanes) but it's pretty hard to make traffic go poof and vanish without without wrecking the economy or making it literally illegal or too expensive to drive.

Take it away, Damien:

But to your specific problem, living in Brentwood and commuting via car Downtown there are really only three solutions: move, get a new job, or get over it. That commute is a result of decisions you made and are making. Thanks to a wife that makes quite a bit more than I do, we could live in Brentwood if we wanted to, but we live in Mar Vista. Why? Because the Expo Line and Bike Path are coming. Brentwood may have a legendary private school system and some of the nicest real estate in L.A., but Mar Vista will have much better bike and transit options.It’s all part of the decisions we make. It’s the governments job to make it possible for you to live where you want and can afford and work where you want and can get a job. It’s not their job to make it as easy and smooth as possible. Your commute is part of the price you pay to live in Brentwood and work Downtown.And if you think there are too many cars on the street, remember that you are in one of them. You’re part of the problem, not part of the solution.

Continue reading


South Bay Service Council hosting special meeting Wednesday evening to discuss Metro bus lines 210 and 710

The Metro South Bay Council will host a special evening meeting tomorrow, Wednesday, February 27, at 6 pm to receive public input on Metro Lines 210 and 710 serving Crenshaw Blvd.

All of the Metro Service Councils have selected specific lines in their regions to develop ideas on how to improve Metro Bus on these corridors. The South Bay Service Council is asking the public to attend and share their suggestions about improving service on Lines 210 and 710 at tomorrow’s special meeting.

The meeting will be held at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza, First Floor Community Room (between Sears and the LAPD Substation, by Stocker Street entrance), 3560 Martin Luther Kings Jr Blvd, in the City of Los Angeles. If you are not able to attend the meeting, but would like to submit recommendations about either or both of these routes to the Service Council, please send your comments to servicecouncils@metro.net.

For more information about this corridor study, and all of the corridor studies being conducted by Metro Service Councils, click here to read a previous posting on the subject.

@Metrolosangeles Twitter Tuesday

Welcome to Twitter Tuesday, our roundup of the latest Metro related tweets. To get our attention, add the #MetroLosAngeles tag to your tweets and subscribe to our feed if you haven’t already. For specific complaints and customer service, please use the Customer Comment Form on metro.net.

If having problems viewing this post on your browser, please see part one and part two on the Storify website.

Many more tweets posted after the jump!

Continue reading

@Metrolosangeles Twitter Tuesday, Feb. 19 edition

Welcome to Twitter Tuesday, our roundup of the latest Metro related tweets. To get our attention, add the #MetroLosAngeles tag to your tweets and subscribe to our feed if you haven’t already. For specific complaints and customer service, please use the Customer Comment Form on metro.net.

If having problems viewing this post on your browser, please see part one and part two on the Storify website.

Many more tweets posted after the jump!

Continue reading

Metro to hold public workshop on improving bus service along Crenshaw Boulevard

Metro’s South Bay Cities Service Council invites the public to attend a special workshop to discuss options on how to improve current bus service on Metro lines 210 and 710, which run between Hollywood/Vine Station and South Bay Galleria and Wilshire Center to South Bay Galleria via Crenshaw Blvd. The meeting details are as follows:

Time: Wednesday, February 27 at 6 p.m.
Location: Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza
First Floor Community Room (between Sears and the LAPD Substation by Stocker Street entrance)
3650 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90008

The meeting location can be reached by Metro Bus 40, 105, 210, 705, 710, and 740. Free parking is available. For more routes or connections, use Trip Planner or call 323.GO.METRO. Those who cannot attend can also submit comments via email to servicecouncils@metro.net.

The public is also invited and encouraged to attend the regular monthly Service Council meetings to provide input on Metro service in their area. The Metro South Bay Service Council usually meets on the second Friday of each month at 9:30 a.m. at Inglewood City Hall, located at 1 W. Manchester Blvd.

Upon request, sign language interpretation, materials in alternative formats, interpreters, and other accommodations are available to the public for Metro-sponsored meetings and events. All requests for reasonable accommodations must be made at least three working days (72 hours) in advance of the scheduled meeting date. Please telephone 213.922.4600 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. The TDD line is 800.252.9040.

Focus group says that these redesigned screens on Metro ticket machines are a big step in right direction; what do you think?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

What do you think? Are we on the right track with these new screen designs?

A focus group on Tuesday — the third focus group so far — indicated that ticket vending machine redesigns by Metro’s Creative Services Staff are headed in the right direction.

All of the participants were impressed with the new designs and provided helpful feedback to further refine the screens. They assured Metro that the new screens were a vast improvement over the existing screens and were “very clear and self-explanatory.”  Another participant noted, “I don’t have to concentrate and look for the options. They are very clearly organized.”

One new addition is a more prominent selection screen with 10 different languages, which will make purchases easier for limited-English customers and tourists from abroad. Other improvements include more understandable terminology and less jargon, simpler screens with fewer options and more intuitive selections and more explanations of options — which hopefully will mean less pushing of the ‘help’ button for customers.

The new screens will help all riders purchase and reload TAP cards more quickly and easily, a big help to both rail and bus riders. Bus riders are now using TAP cards more than ever before. Preliminary results from the most recent bus survey conducted by Metro Research show that about seven in 10 bus riders are now using TAP cards to pay for their fares. This is up from about five in 10 in the previous quarter.

What do you think? If you’re leaving a comment, please be as specific as possible about what you like or don’t like or any suggestions that you may have.

@Metrolosangeles Twitter Tuesday, Feb. 12 edition

Welcome to Twitter Tuesday, our roundup of the latest Metro related tweets. To get our attention, add the #MetroLosAngeles tag to your tweets and subscribe to our feed if you haven’t already. For specific complaints and customer service, please use the Customer Comment Form on metro.net.

If having problems viewing this post on your browser, please see part one and part two on the Storify website.

Many more tweets after the jump!

Continue reading