On Transportation column: June 13 edition

This week’s thoughts:

photo by Bradley Tollison, via Twitter

•The more big events in downtown L.A., the better for Metro Rail. Downtown is the hub of the rail system, of course, and events such as the NHL and NBA playoffs I suspect give people a chance to ride a transit system they may otherwise not use.

And every indication is that they are using it.

The victory parade for the L.A. Kings on Thursday at noon is yet another chance to use the system. The parade route on Figueroa between 5th Street and L.A. Live, is easily accessed by the Red/Purple Line subway, Blue Line and Expo Line. The Silver Line also offers easy transfers to Metro Rail in downtown L.A.

On a related note, I went for a nice, long hike across the Dodger Stadium parking lot before a recent game. That’s just a silly amount of pavement, people. Downtown transit-adjacent ballpark, please!

•May ridership estimates are in and show the Expo Line carried 11,347 average weekday boardings, 9,000 on Saturdays and 7,000 for Sundays. In total, there were an estimated 320,627 boardings in May, the Expo Line’s first full month of service. That’s not bad considering that two stations — Farmdale and Culver City — don’t open until June 20.

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Bus detours Thursday for L.A. Kings victory parade

Here’s the news release from Metro and here is more information about taking Metro Rail into downtown Los Angeles for the parade:

The Los Angeles Kings Parade planned for Thursday, June 14 at 12 p.m., in downtown Los Angeles will create street closures along Figueroa Street and around the Staples Center. Metro is the best option for fans to get to the parade celebration and to Staples Center for the rally.

Metro’s Red, Purple, Blue and Expo lines serve two strategic stations along the parade route; 7th St./Metro Center (at the parade route) and Pico Stations (at Staples Center).

The Metro Red and Purple Lines will operate six cars trains and the Metro Blue, Expo and Gold Lines will be adding trains and service depending on demand.

In addition, for those fans coming form the South Bay area, the Metro Silver Line traveling along the Harbor Transitway will be a good option with stops along Olive Street. For those coming from San Gabriel Valley, the Silver Line operates out of the El Monte Station with stops along Grand Avenue in downtown Los Angeles.

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Take Metrolink trains to the L.A. Kings parade and rally

Here is the news release from Metrolink, the commuter rail agency, and here is our post on taking Metro Rail to the parade:

LOS ANGELES – Don’t miss the parade and/or rally for the LA Kings’ historic Stanley Cup win waiting in traffic or searching for a parking spot. Metrolink offers safe, reliable, cost-effective train service to and from L.A. Union Station from across the region. From Union Station, connect to the Metro Red Line and get off at the 7th Street/Metro Center stop to watch the parade from a prime location.

The parade will begin at noon at 5th and Figueroa streets and end at the STAPLES Center. There will also be a rally at the STAPLES’ Center at 2:30 p.m.

Please visit www.metrolinktrains.com for more information on schedules and ticketing options.Tickets are not sold onboard the train. Ticket vending machines and ticket validators are located on Metrolink train platforms. Please purchase a ticket before you board the train and present your ticket to the fare inspector on request. Passengers without a valid ticket are subject to citation and fine.

Directions from L.A. Union Station:

From L.A. Union Station, take the Metro Red or Purple Line to 7th Street /Metro Center Station. Follow the signs to the Figueroa Street exit and go upstairs to the street level. Walk a few blocks south on Figueroa Street to arrive at the parade start at Figueroa and Fifth streets.

If you want to go to the STAPLES Center, take the Metro Red or Purple Line to 7th Street/Metro Center Station. Then go upstairs to the Metro Blue Line and ride free to the Pico/Chick Hearn Station located directly across the street from the STAPLES Center.

ABOUT METROLINK (www.metrolinktrains.com)

Metrolink is Southern California’s regional commuter rail service in its 19th year of operation. The Southern California Regional Rail Authority (SCRRA), a joint powers authority made up of an 11-member board representing the transportation commissions of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties, governs the service. Metrolink operates over seven routes through a six-county, 512 route-mile network. Metrolink is the third largest commuter rail agency in the United States based on directional route miles and the seventh largest based on annual ridership.


Transportation headlines, Wednesday, June 13

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 Headlines blog, which you can also access via email subscription or RSS feed.

Metro considering expanding night service on Gold Line (San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

No details yet — Metro is working on a plan. But the recently-passed budget includes money to add service to the Gold, Blue and Expo Lines, as well as increase some bus service. The big question to be answered is whether trains run more frequently during their scheduled night-time hours or whether they run later. We’ll see.

Bicycle accommodations at the new Grand Park (LADOT Bike Blog)

The new 12-acre park in the heart of the Civic Center in downtown L.A. will have 12 bike racks that can handle three bikes apiece for a total of 36 bike parking spots, reports Bike Blog. The park will also be very easy to reach via the city of Los Angeles’ growing network of downtown bike lanes — see this CurbedLA post on the new Los Angeles Street bike lanes from Union Station — as well as the Red/Purple Line Civic Center station.

A rendering of the park, courtesy RCH Studios via LADOT Bike Blog.

Want to increase biking? Sharrows won’t cut it (Streetsblog)

A new L.A. County Bike Coalition study finds that sharrows are not a persuasive way of getting people to bike. Why? Because, well, they don’t do anything to relieve the stress of riding in traffic. Or, as I like to say, sharrows are usually a great way to make it look like a city is doing something when they’re doing nothing. More bike lanes, please.

Missing persons found with help of Metro bus operator

Two children and a mentally disabled adult who went missing from Long Beach on Saturday night were discovered Monday morning at the Sylmar/San Fernando Metrolink Station with the help of Metro bus operator George Vazquez.

Vazquez was operating Line 230 when he noticed the trio at the Sylmar Metrolink Station terminal and felt they matched the description of the missing persons from the bulletin put out by the Long Beach Police Department. He notified Mark Solomon and Gerardo Zavaleta at Metro bus control, who in turn notified the San Fernando Police Department, LAPD and Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department. The authorities responded to the location and verified that it was the missing woman and children, who were found none the worse for wear.

Thanks to Vazquez’s keen eye, the woman and children were safely escorted by authorities back to Long Beach.

@Metrolosangeles Twitter Tuesday, June 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.

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Transportation headlines, Tuesday, June 12

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 Headlines blog, which you can also access via email subscription or RSS feed.

Wilshire Boulevard moments after President Obama's motorcade passed and it was reopened to the public. Photo by Carter Rubin/Metro.

Kings parade and rally to be held Thursday in downtown L.A. (The Daily News)

In case you missed the news: The L.A. Kings are the 2012 Stanley Cup Champs. As per tradition, there will be a celebratory parade held on Thursday at 12 noon. The Kings have announced that the parade will travel from 5th Street and Figueroa down Figueroa to Staples Center. It’s safe to say some bus service will be impacted, so stay tuned for more info on that. If you’re planning to attend, Metro Rail and Metrolink are great options for avoiding traffic en route to downtown.

Price Points: L.A. transformation (Spacing Vancouver)

Former Vancouver city counselor Gordon Price shares with is readers the story of Measure R and what he anticipates it will mean for the region. Price calls it a chance for L.A. to become a “Post-Motordom” city, one where transit is a viable option for most Angelenos. Price also highlights where Measure R fits in the region’s rich history of supporting public infrastructure:

[As] political science professor and historian Steve Erie points out, this is in fact the norm for the people of the Southland.  From 1873, when they gave a huge whack of dough to the Southern Pacific Railway to get them into town, to the creation of a harbour at San Pedro, to the famous water and power projects associated with the name Mulholland (and dark conspiracies), to the airport and highways, “the foundational base of LA is public support for infrastructure .”


Want to increase cycling? Sharrows won’t cut it (Streetsblog.net)

Streetsblog’s Angie Schmitt highlights frustrations in San Diego that the city has put too much emphasis on installing sharrows — those roadway markings that instruct drivers to share the lane — and not enough of on bike lanes, protected lanes and paths. Studies suggest that those latter interventions are what actually make potential riders feels safe enough to take to the street on two wheels.