Photo by U.S. Embassy New Delhi, via Flickr creative commons.
This weekend, as always, there’s lots to do in the Los Angeles area. Here are several ideas, easily accessible by Metro bus and rail. Click here for a system map.
Monday, January 16th, is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, celebrating the life and work of the American civil rights leader. The annual Kingdom Day Parade kicks off around 10 a.m. on Monday at the corner of Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd and Western Avenue and heads west along Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. The parade ends at Leimert Park where there will be food booths and entertainment. (Bus 40, 42 or 207 to Western Ave & W Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd). For details on the bus lines impacted by the parade click here: Jan. 16 South LA: 2012 Kingdom Day Parade.
Also this weekend and running through Monday, Photo LA is back at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. Photo LA is a special annual event for photography buffs and ordinary folks who like to look at the work of talented photographers. (Metro Rapid 733 or 720 to downtown Santa Monica).
The California Geological Survey has sent Metro the letter posted below about its position on earthquake fault zones in the Century City area.
The letter was prompted by an L.A. Weekly story published in December headlined “Westside Subway Extension feud: Did Metro rig a Century City fault study to move the Purple Line?” That story reported that the California Geological Survey had previously deemed the Santa Monica Fault to be inactive, which prompted the Weekly to run this correction:
The article “Westside Subway Extension Feud” (Dec. 23) incorrectly stated that trenching, a method of fault testing, had been conducted on the Santa Monica Fault in the late 1970s and found the fault to be inactive. In fact, the fault was evaluated using mapping and other data, not trenching. The data was insufficient to deem the fault active or inactive.
As of Friday, the correction was still not attached to the online version of the story, which also did not identify the engineer quoted as being a consultant to the Beverly Hills Unified School District. Here is the letter from the California Geological Survey that clarifies its position on the Santa Monica Fault, the West Beverly Hills Lineamint and Alquist-Priolo fault designations:
photo by Freedom II Andres, via Flickr creative commons
Trains, buses, tall buildings, a wide street and few pedestrians in this photo taken….go ahead and guess. The answer is after the jump.
To submit a photo for the Art of Transit, post it to Metro’s Flickr group, email it to email@example.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.
Long Beach: bike town. Photo by flickr user Waltarrrrr
Here is a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by us and the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the library’s blog.
Cycles and cents: One city sets out to prove that bikes are good for business (Grist)
Long Beach’s energetic embrace of bicycling infrastructure has earned plaudits from bike and safety advocates, and it has been a boon to everyone who has wanted to dust off the old Schwinn but didn’t feel comfortable riding in mixed traffic. But how has the business community responded? This article suggests that early skepticism has given way to embrace, thanks to the city’s and bike advocates’ success at explaining the bottom line benefits of supporting bikes. For one, you can park 12 bikes in the space taken up by just one car.
Chief executive of high-speed rail project steps down (L.A. Times)
As we mentioned yesterday, California High-Speed Rail Authority CEO Roelof van Ark has resigned as head of the agency, citing the desire to spend more time with his family. One member of the California Transportation Commission suggested that van Ark was a good engineer, but didn’t “have his finger on the political pulse of the state.” While some will surely see the shakeup as a sign of further tumult, a number of legislators were quoted as saying that this was a much-needed fresh start for the project.
Metropolis II at LACMA: Will a sculpture made of 1,100 Hot Wheels predict L.A.’s future? (L.A. Weekly)
Here’s my plan for the weekend: Check out the Metropolis II sculpture at LACMA. Though sculpture isn’t quite the right word, because there’s over a thousand toy cars whizzing through this model city on elevated tracks. The project’s creator, Chris Burden, envisions an L.A. of the future with auto-pilot cars criss-crossing the city at over 200 mph. Maybe the distant future. My thought: We don’t need to wait for glitzy technology to improve mobility in L.A.; some more bus-only lanes would go a long way for starters.
A digital rendering of BART's concept for its new car interiors. Snazzy! Photo via BART.gov.
This weekly post features news from other transit agencies and planners from around the world. Did we miss a good story? Let us know in the comments.
BART’s Fleet of the Future: Update on key features for new train cars
Bay Area Rapid Transit posted this update on its ongoing project to design a new fleet of rail cars for the system. The design above diverges from earlier proposals we’ve seen, but overall I give it a thumbs up: A good mix of seating and standing room, with space for commuters who use wheelchairs and folks with bikes.
Here are some of the highlights from the agency’s website:
1. Split train capability
2. Three doors on each car to make getting on and off faster and easier
3. Energy efficiency improvements
4. Exterior digital displays showing route color and destination
5. Better passenger information — audio and visual
6. Noise and HVAC improvements
7. Easier to clean seats and floors
8. More handholds
9. More priority seating for seniors and people with disabilities
10. System to transmit BART info to hearing aids and cochlear implants
For more tidbits, you can check out this presentation [PDF] from the agency.
The California High-Speed Rail Authority CEO Roelof van Ark just told the agency’s Board of Directors that he will be stepping down from his job in two months to pursue more time with his family and other priorities.
The Board is meeting today at Metro headquarters in Los Angeles.
Van Ark was hired in June 2010.
In addition, two other key Authority staff members are leaving the agency — spokesperson Rachel Wall and deputy director Dan Leavitt.
Board Chairman Thomas J. Umberg also said that he intends to step down as the chair but will continue as a Board member.
Earlier in the meeting, the Board voted not to further study a route along the Grapevine for the bullet train. Instead a route through the Antelope Valley will be pursued — that’s the alignment backed by the Metro Board of Directors.
Lan-Chi Lam is the Interactive Design and Strategy Manager at Metro. She will be writing occasional posts to update readers about Metro’s use of technology to communicate with our customers.
As of December 2011, 30 percent of all web traffic visiting metro.net came from a mobile device (smart phone, cell phone, touch pad). With roughly one million visits per month, this equals approximately 300,000 visits to the site from small devices. Why the surge? Unless you’ve been living underneath a rock for the last few years, you already know its hard to deny the disruptive and immersive beck and call, er, ding and beep, of a mobile device.
I’ve been following our mobile trend for sometime and initially it was about iPhones (iOS) but once Android entered the market, there was a noticeable dramatic shift — especially this year, the Android take-over was fast and furious.
What devices are Metro customers using to visit metro.net?
- Android – 58%
- Apple (iPhone, iPad, iPod) – 37%
- Blackberry – 4%
- Others – 1%
Mobile devices visiting metro.net, Dec 2011. (iOS devices are a similar orange)