On Tuesday night, I “went Metro” from the Westside to catch the L.A. Kings showdown against the Detroit Red Wings at Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles. First, an important point: The Kings authoritatively won 5 to 2 to keep their playoff hopes alive.
As many of you likely know, getting to downtown L.A. for an early evening event from the Westside can be supremely challenging and downright nerve-wracking because of traffic. The eastbound Santa Monica Freeway — the main drain for all those workers leaving the Westside — is usually stop-and-go from mid-afternoon until well past 7 p.m. on most weekdays.
As of this moment, there is no Metro Rail and Metrolink service west of downtown, although the Expo Line to Culver City is coming soon (more on that below). In the meantime, however, there are a variety of bus lines operated by Metro and others that provide options other than driving.
Depending on where on the Westside you’re coming from, you’ve got the 720 Rapid on Wilshire, the 733 Rapid on Venice, the 704 Rapid along Santa Monica, the Big Blue Bus Rapid 7 along Pico Boulevard to the Wilshire/Western Purple Line station — to name a few. Metro’s trip planner and Google Transit are useful online tools. Or, if you have any specific questions about the best route for you, I’d be happy to field them in the comments section.
With that in mind, here’s how I did it…