Go Metro Weekends, July 27 – 29

This excited little boy was the first kid (of many) to enjoy the new interactive splash pad at Grand Park. Photo by Anna Chen/Metro

REDCAT’s New Original Works Festival is back, and week one features programs by Opera Povera, Poor Dog Group and Susan Simpson. Head out this Friday and catch some great theatre performances. The show starts at 8:30 p.m. at the Walt Disney Concert Hall complex and general admission tickets are $18. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Civic Center Station, Metro Bus 70 or 96 to Grand/2nd)

If you haven’t heard about Metro’s expanded late-night service yet…read about it now, and then start taking advantage of it! Go ahead and take Metro to Chinatown Summer Nights, you can stay the entire time and not worry about missing the last train home. With food, music, dancing and more, there will be plenty to keep you occupied. The first of three Summer Nights is this Saturday from 5 p.m. to midnight and it’s absolutely free. Go Metro and receive a free souvenir at the info booth in Central Plaza while supplies last. (Metro Gold Line to Chinatown Station, Metro Bus 45 to Broadway & Chinatown)

Continue reading

You wanted it, you got it: Late night Metro Rail and Orange Line service begins tonight!

Metro Board Chairman and County Supervisor Mike Antonovich talks about Metro’s new late night service at a press event this morning at the Gold Line’s Memorial Park station in Pasadena. Photo: Steve Hymon/Metro.

There was a media event in Pasadena this morning to remind everyone that late night weekend service until 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights begins tonight.

“The new late night service on Metro Rail and the Orange Line is a win-win situation for everyone in Los Angeles County,” said Metro Board Chair and County Supervisor Mike Antonovich. “Businesses will be able to reach a new range of clientele. More people can go out to eat, drink and have fun on weekends without worrying about a midnight curfew, and more workers now have the option of taking that later shift and can rest assured they’re going to have a safe, reliable way to make it home. Los Angeles County residents will benefit from the connections to the rail system, and people from the San Fernando Valley will be able to travel to other destinations in the county such as Pasadena, Long Beach, Norwalk or Culver City late at night.”

At the event, Antonovich also added that “long range we do have a vision…we want to continue this momentum.” In particular, he said Metro needs to keep focusing on connecting to popular destinations — such as the region’s airports.

Metro CEO Art Leahy said that ridership will be evaluated after six months to determine whether late night service will be added every night of the week. Metro is currently evaluating the possibility of late night service on the Silver Line and is also working with Metrolink on the possibility of extending their service to connect with Metro Rail and the Orange Line.

Here are the times that the last trains and buses will be leaving stations tonight and here is a link to all Metro timetables:

RED LINE

The last train departing Union Station will be at 2:12 a.m.

The last train departing North Hollywood will be at 1:56 a.m.

PURPLE LINE

The last trains departing Union Station will be at 2:02 a.m.

The last trains departing Wilshire/Western will be at 2:03 a.m.

GOLD LINE

The last train departing Atlantic will be at 1:43 a.m.

The last train departing Sierra Madre Villa will be at 1:39 a.m.

EXPO LINE

The last train departing 7th/Metro Center will be at 2:12 a.m.

The last train departing Culver City will be at 1:49 a.m.

BLUE LINE

The last train departing Long Beach to downtown L.A. will be 12:58 a.m.

The last train departing 7th/Metro will be 2:07 a.m.

Service between the Long Beach Transit Mall and Wardlaw will continue past 12:58 a.m. with the last train leaving the Transit Mall at 3:07 a.m.

GREEN LINE

The last train departing Redondo Beach will be 1:58 a.m.

The last train departing Norwalk will be at 2:09 a.m.

ORANGE LINE

The last bus departing North Hollywood will be at 2:53 a.m.

The last bus departing Chatsworth will be at 1:50 a.m.

The art of transit

photo by TCDavis, via Flickr creative commons

There are a lot of photos floating around online of escalators and stairs in subway stations, but relatively few of them manage to be good. Here’s a nicely composed one taken this month in the Washington D.C. Metro. The photo has great lines — the composition is well balanced — and it’s also a good use of the silhouettes of the riders. The photo was taken with a Leica D-LUX 4 point-n-shoot.

To submit a photo for the Art of Transit, post it to Metro’s Flickr group, email it to sourcemetro@gmail.com or Tweet it to @metrolosangeles with an #artoftransit hashtag. Many of the photos we’ve featured can be seen in these galleries on Flickr.

Timetables with late night hours are posted

The new late night timetable for the Red Line!

As some people in the Twitterverse discovered yesterday — thanks Carter! :) — the new timetables for Metro Rail and the Orange Line have been posted and they include the new late-night hours scheduled to begin this Friday night/Saturday morning.

Metro is extending the hours for Metro Rail service until 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. In some cases, the last trains don’t roll until after 2 a.m. — for example, the last Expo Line train leaving 7th/Metro Center for Culver City departs at 2:12 a.m.

If you want to check the new timetables, the links are posted below.

Blue Line

Red Line / Purple Line

Green Line

Gold Line

Expo Line

Orange Line

The art of transit

photo by downtowngal, via submission

This is a very cool photo. Explains downtowngal in an email:

This was taken on the Purple Line. It was really blurry but saved by
processing in Photoshop Elements with the Poster Edges filter, and
applying a color gradient. I think it expresses how a subway ride feels
late at night…

Just about any photo processing software now — including most for smartphones — allows you to do all sorts of neat effects that can turn a so-so photo in something pretty neat, such as the above. PS Elements has some nice filters (Elements, which I also use often, is the inexpensive version of Photoshop), as does iPhoto on Apple computers.

To submit a photo for the Art of Transit, post it to Metro’s Flickr group, email it to sourcemetro@gmail.com or Tweet it to @metrolosangeles with an #artoftransit hashtag. Many of the photos we’ve featured can be seen in these galleries on Flickr.

Students at summer science camp study the Expo Line

 

Science camps have come a long way since the days of making bottle rockets and building balsa wood bridges. The middle school students attending the ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp at USC this year were studying urban infrastructure, green technology and how to reduce congestion and pollution through light rail transit. As it so happened, the Expo Line was conveniently available for them to use as a case scenario.

A future urban transportation planner at work! This camper is at the computer programming his robot “train” for its run through the LEGO city.

The 48 campers from grades 6-8 spent two weeks analyzing the Expo Phase II Final Environmental Impact Report, studying the route alignment and designing their own cities and autonomous light rail vehicles. They also got the chance to go on excursions and see the science at work out in the field. Earlier this morning, the students presented their LEGO-made master cities, the robots they designed and programmed to run through those cities (see video posted above, and yes that is this year’s Festival of Books dinosaur in the background) and stated their findings and opinions on the Expo Line Phase II.

While the summer science camp ended today, the campers’ love of science and engineering continue on. Who knows, one of these kids could be designing a real rail system for Metro one day!

Go Metro Weekends, July 20 – 22

[flickrvideo]http://www.flickr.com/photos/waltarrrrr/5985409011/[/flickrvideo]

The Dark Knight Rises has already been promoted for Friday (will it take over the spot Marvel’s Avengers occupies in my heart? We’ll see!), so I’m just going to start with Saturday.

Relax and enjoy a free outdoor concert at Pershing Square on Saturday night. The FIXX with special guest Modern English grace the stage at 8 p.m. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Pershing Square Station, Metro Bus 14 to Olive/5th, Metro Bus 18 to 5th/Hill)

This Saturday, Eat|See|Hear moves to the North Hollywood Recreation Center. Nightmare and the Cat goes on at 7 p.m. and Tommy Boy shows at 8 p.m. Some of the attending food trucks include Dosa Truck and Ta Bom! Tickets start at $10. (Metro Red Line or Orange Line to North Hollywood Station, walk one block west on Chandler Blvd., Metro Bus 156 to Chandler/Tujunga)

If you’re determined the brave the mid-afternoon heat, head to BloomfestLA in the downtown Arts District (area by Wurstkuche restaurant). There will be music, food trucks, a beer garden and street art. Best of all, BloomfestLA is free to attend. The event lasts from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. and offers a free bike valet. (Metro Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station, walk two blocks south on Alameda)

If you have any energy left for Sunday, go to Pasadena for the Gran Fondo Giro d’Italia. Even if you’re not riding in the long-distance bike event – although you can if you’d like, registration the day of is $170 – you can go cheer on the riders and enjoy the expo of bike gear and of course, Italian food. The bike ride starts at 7 a.m. and the expo opens at 9 a.m. at Pasadena City Hall. (Metro Gold Line to Memorial Park Station, walk two blocks east on Holly St., Pasadena ARTS Bus 40 to Marengo/Holly)

Reminder: more Metrolink weekend service between L.A. Union Station and Oceanside

A Metrolink train in San Clemente. Photo by Loco Steve, via Flickr creative commons.

With the hot weather, here’s a reminder that Metrolink is running more trains this summer on its Orange County line between Los Angeles Union Station and Oceanside. The second-to-last stop is literally right next to the beach in San Clemente.

Click here for train schedules.

There’s also increased service between the Inland Empire and Orange County.

Here’s the news release from Metrolink that was issued earlier this month:

LOS ANGELES – Metrolink launched an additional round-trip from Riverside to Laguna Niguel and back on the Inland Empire-Orange County line, today. Also, a pair of additional trains began operation between Laguna Niguel and Fullerton on the Orange County Line.

Starting Saturday (July 8), Metrolink will add four round-trip trains on its Orange County Line between Los Angeles Union Station and Oceanside on the weekends. This allows riders from across Southern California to take advantage of the $10 Weekend Pass to visit destinations in Orange County such as Disneyland and the many beautiful beaches.

 

Continue reading

Go Metro to the Grand Park opening and get the chance to win a huge prize package

A view of Grand Park in the late afternoon. Photos by Anna Chen/Metro

The first two blocks of downtown’s brand-new Grand Park - from Grand Avenue to Hill Street – will open to the public with a two-day celebration on July 28 and 29. Grand Park is just steps from Civic Center Station on the Red and Purple Lines and plenty of buses also have stops around the park, which means it’s easy to get there with Metro – and if you go Metro to the opening events, you’ll get the chance to win the Grand Avenue Prize Package!

Just show your Metro pass at the info booth on either Saturday, July 28 or Sunday, July 29 to enter for your chance to win. The Grand Avenue Prize Package includes:

July 28 also happens to be National Dance Day. Head to the park and get your dance on with Lauren Gottlieb, a “So You Think You Can Dance” All-Star, and Gina Grant from Zumba. The two ladies will lead the public in the official National Dance Day dance routines.

The National Dance Day Celebration lasts from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Afterward, enjoy free community dance classes and performances, a special performance by IRIS from Cirque du Soleil, other fun activities and food trucks for the rest of the day.

Festivities continue Sunday, July 29 from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with Music in the Park. The inaugural musical event will feature regional musical performers presented by Grand Performances in partnership with The Music Center.

When the third block of Grand Park (from Hill St. to Broadway) opens later this summer, visitors exiting Civic Center Station will come out right in the middle of the park.

The art of transit

photo by William Andrews, via submission

William emailed this photo over a few weeks ago — as a summer solstice photo — but I thought it would be nice to run on what promises to be a stinking hot day here in So Cal. The photo was taken in 2002 on on the Bognes-Lødingen Ferry in Norway, which is north of the Arctic Circle. The village of Lødingen is visible in the background. Very nice all-around photo.

To submit a photo for the Art of Transit, post it to Metro’s Flickr group, email it to sourcemetro@gmail.com or Tweet it to @metrolosangeles with an #artoftransit hashtag. Many of the photos we’ve featured can be seen in these galleries on Flickr.