Go Metro to see Amgen Tour of California on Saturday in downtown L.A.

Photo by Amgen Tour of California

The eight-stage Amgen Tour of California bike race began Sunday in Northern California and will reach downtown Los Angeles on Saturday with an individual time trial through the city.

Click above to see larger image.

Brett Lancaster, of Australia, holds the overall lead after stage two; the racers are today tackling the 113-mile stage between Santa Cruz and San Francisco.

The race is free to watch and Saturday would be a very good day to use Metro rail and/or Metrolink to get around downtown since there will be numerous street closures and bus detours. Several rail stations are near the race course, as shown at the map at right. More details in the press release below:

Lance Armstrong headlines bike event
Go Metro to the 2010 Amgen Tour of California Saturday, May 22

Go Metro to see legendary cyclist Lance Armstrong participate in the 2010 Amgen Tour of California in downtown Los Angeles, Saturday, May 22, and take advantage of the five Metro Rail stations nearby to see the bicycle race along downtown streets. The public event is free.

Billed as the largest cycling event in America, the 2010 Amgen Tour of California -in various California cities- is a Tour of France-style cycling road race that challenges the world’s top professional cycling teams to compete along a demanding course from May 16-23. On Saturday, stage 7 of the race will be in Los Angeles. Continue reading


Blue Line stations reopen in downtown L.A.

Just in time for the Monday morning commute, the Blue Line powers up for the start of service this morning at 4 a.m. Downtown Blue Line stations — Washington, Grand, Pico/Chick Hearn, 7th Metro Center — were closed to allow for construction of the Expo light rail line. Rail service from Long Beach Transit Mall to Washington Station was not affected. A bus bridge was established to shuttle passengers to Red, Purple, and Gold Line connections.

What was happening: Regional connector construction

Blue Line service delays in downtown L.A. again this weekend

Work on tying the Expo Line tracks into the Blue Line tracks continues in downtown this weekend, meaning there will be no Blue Line service between the Washington station and 7th/Metro Center. A bus bridge will carry passengers between Washington and 7th/Metro Center.

Construction work begins at 9 p.m. Friday night and regular Blue Line service is scheduled to resume by rush hour Monday morning. Press release with more details is after the jump. Continue reading

Blue Line rail service in downtown Los Angeles ready for Monday morning commute

On schedule and in time for the Monday morning commute, the Blue Line powers up for the start of service this morning at 4 a.m. Downtown Blue Line stations — Washington, Grand, Pico/Chick Hearn, 7th Metro Center — were closed to allow for construction of the Expo light rail line. Rail service from Long Beach Transit Mall to Washington Station was not affected. A bus bridge was established to shuttle passengers to Red, Purple, and Gold Line connections.

What was happening: Read earlier post

And so it begins: Sunset Boulevard bridge demolition prep work begins tonight

The above photos and graphics show the Sunset Boulevard bridge over the 405 freeway in its current state and what it will look like after it is torn down and reconstructed. The key number to remember: the bridge is 90 feet and six lanes wide at present and when rebuilt will be 120 feet and eight lanes wide with higher capacity on- and off-ramps.

The bridge work is part of the Sepulveda Pass Widening Project that is adding a northbound carpool lane on the 405 between the Santa Monica and Ventura freeways.

All lanes on the bridge will be closed between 10 p.m. tonight and 6 a.m. Saturday morning. There are other closures in the area — here’s a list on the project’s Twitter account.

Sunset Boulevard bridge meet hoe ram…hoe ram meet Sunset Boulevard bridge

A hoe ram at work on the Flower Street bridge over the 110 freeway in downtown Los Angeles.

With working beginning Friday night to prepare the Sunset Boulevard bridge over the 405 for demolition, County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky’s website takes a deeper look at the work to come. The bridge work is part of the widening of the 405 to add a northbound carpool lane between the Santa Monica and Ventura freeways.

Yaroslavsky, of course, is also a member of the Board of Directors of Metro.

So for the demolition work, they’re bringing in a destruction tool called the “hoe ram”—a crane with a massive jackhammer attached. The contractor is “basically going to break the bridge apart with a huge jackhammer,” says Mark Van Gessel, Metro’s manager for the Sunset segment.

The work will take place in phases—between 6 and 9 nights of demolition followed by 10 months of construction on the southern end of the bridge, with a repeat of the same pattern on the northern side when the first half is finished. In all, some 12,000 tons of concrete will come down, to be pulverized onsite and recycled as “crushed miscellaneous base” and used as a building material on the project.

This is just a chunk of a much longer article that seems optimistic that the new bridge — 120 feet wide compared to 90 feet at present — should help traffic flow better in the area. It’s a good read and worth checking out. Here’s a link to the project website.

And while on Yaroslavsky’s website, you may also want to read his recent blog post on his views that no more oil leases should be sold for oil drilling along the California coast.

Blue Line delays in downtown L.A. this weekend

Construction continues on tying the Expo Line light rail project into the Blue Line in downtown Los Angeles. That means another weekend of bus bridges replacing Blue Line service between the Washington station and Metro Center at Figueroa and 7th.

Bus service between the stations begins Friday at 9 p.m. and continues throughout the weekend. Metro is planning on resuming normal Blue Line service by rush hour Monday morning.

All the details are in press releases, in English and Spanish, after the jump.

Continue reading


Reminder: Sunset Boulevard bridge work begins Friday night on 405 project

Click above to see a larger image.

Yet another friendly major infrastructure improvement reminder: Work begins on the run-up to demolishing the Sunset Boulevard bridge over the 405 on Friday night. The tear-down is part of the Sepulveda Pass Widening Project that will add a northbound carpool lane to the 405 between the Santa Monica and Ventura freeways. Scheduled opening is spring 2013.

The bridge is not — I repeat, IS NOT — being torn down all at once. Instead, the work beginning on Friday is to reconfigure the bridge from six lanes to four. The two southbound lanes will then be demolished in three different phases, as shown in the graphic below.

Because the bridge is losing two lanes of traffic, there could be delays — even with six lanes, it’s not as if traffic flowed easily through the area. The above map shows suggested detours around the construction zone. The major demolition work is being planned over six nights, with three other nights scheduled as a contingency in case work doesn’t proceed that quickly. Those dates will be available later.

There’s a good presentation online at the project website that looks at some of the issues and the construction workflow in the area. A press release with more details is after the jump.

Click above to see larger image.

Continue reading

Demolition of Sunset Boulevard bridge over 405 to soon begin

Click above to see larger image.

As part of the widening of the 405 freeway to add a carpool lane through the Sepulveda Pass, the bridge that carries Sunset Boulevard over the freeway is going to soon be demolished and rebuilt — while partially remaining open to traffic. Work begins later this month.

The page to the right is a Q&A on the Sunset part of the 405 project and is part of a larger document.

The item below is from Metro CEO Art Leahy’s daily email to staff about meeting with community members and businesses about the impending bridge work. We’ll have lots more on The Source as work gets closer to happening.

Community Briefings Regarding Sunset Bridge Demolition & Reconstruction

On Monday, April 26, 2010, staff for the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Widening project briefed the Hotel Luxe and Hotel Angeleno on the upcoming Sunset Bridge demolition and reconstruction. These activities require reconfigured traffic flow across the bridge during the second week of May, with demolition beginning later that month.

The project team committed to continual communication with the hotels to ensure that planned construction activities do not interfere with major events planned at either facility. Continue reading