Transportation headlines, Monday, August 11

Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on TwitterFacebook and Instagram. Pick your social media poison! 

ART OF TRANSIT: The One Santa Fe development in downtown L.A.'s Arts District as seen from an inbound Eastside Gold Line train crossing the L.A. River. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

ART OF TRANSIT: The One Santa Fe development in downtown L.A.’s Arts District as seen from an inbound Eastside Gold Line train crossing the L.A. River. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

And there’s this:

Copenhagen’s new sky bikeway makes commuting look like fun (Wired) 

bridge-4

The 721-foot bridge takes cyclists over the city’s harbor instead of around it. Nice. The notoriously bike-friendly city has more than 221 miles of bike lanes — including many that are protected from traffic — and the city says that 52 percent of workers or students commute by bike each day.

eHighway system coming to Ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach (Daily News)

The idea is to power trucks with electricity, which means no tailpipe emissions from the trucks (although possible emissions from trucks, depending on how the electricity was generated). A one-mile test system will be built next year to be used by four test trucks outfitted with pantographs and alternative power sources when not running under wires. Very interesting and not as pie-in-the-sky as it sounds, given that cities such as San Francisco still use overhead wires to supply electricity to many buses. In fact, such a system has been looked at as part of Metro’s ongoing 710 Corridor studies.

Wi-fi on rails is a headache for riders and the UTA (Salt Lake City Tribune)

As other agencies have found, railroad cars are proving to be a harsh setting for wi-fi equipment coupled with high demand that consumes the wi-fi that is available. Wi-fi is proving somewhat reliable for things such as email, but not big tasks such as watching video and uploading and downloading big files.

Baltimore gets a giant bus stop shaped like the word ‘bus’ (CityLab) 

Don’t believe the headline? Check out the photo.

 

 

Transportation headlines, Friday, August 8

Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on TwitterFacebook and Instagram. Pick your social media poison! 

ART OF TRANSIT: The Orange Line crossing the L.A. River in the Sepulveda Basin earlier this week. More Orange Line stock photos free for anyone that needs them on our Flickr site. Just click above. I'll be out shooting some pics along the Eastside Gold Line later today--wave is you're riding by! Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

ART OF TRANSIT: The Orange Line crossing the L.A. River in the Sepulveda Basin earlier this week. More Orange Line stock photos free for anyone that needs them on our Flickr site. Just click above. I’ll be out shooting some pics along the Eastside Gold Line later today–wave is you’re riding by! Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

Eyes on the street: faulty ped detour for Expo Phase 2 construction (Streetsblog LA)

As the photos show, a pedestrian detour sign instructs walkers to cross busy Venice Boulevard at a spot also signed as a no ped crossing zone.

Give your input at upcoming high-speed rail meetings (Streetsblog LA)

The California High-Speed Rail Authority held community meetings earlier this week in Burbank and Palmdale and has four more meetings scheduled this month around the area to discuss the environmental studies underway for the segment of the bullet train to run between Palmdale and Los Angeles Union Station. For purposes of the study, the agency is doing a review of the Burbank-to-Palmdale section and then the Burbank-to-Union Station section. Both have their challenges.

Here’s a link to the meeting flyer and here’s a link to a PowerPoint on the two segments in our region under study. As I understand it, the High-Speed Rail Authority is planning to open bullet train service between L.A. and San Francisco in three phases: Merced to the San Fernando Valley, then Merced to San Jose and then both San Jose to S.F. and Burbank to Union Station. One hurdle, of course, is closing the gap between Palmdale and Bakersfield over/under the Tehachapi Mountains.

A test ride through Denver area’s light rail transit (High Country News)

Jonathan Thompson has heard good things about Denver’s big transit push in the last decade and decides to give the train a spin during a recent trip. The verdict:

Over the next couple of days I continue my test of the trains. My conclusion? If the goal of public transit is to transform the greater metro area into a walkable place where residents will want to abandon their cars, then Denver proper gets a B+, while the greater metro area is more like a C — it will take far more than a handful of light rail lines to rejigger the post-World War II, auto-centric suburbs of the West, as my morning walk to the station demonstrates. But if the idea is to give all those poor car-commuting souls non-vehicular options for getting around the greater metro area, then Denver’s system earns a B. As light rail lines out to the airport and other suburbs go on line in 2016, they may even move into A territory. After all, 82,000 daily trips on light rail are 82,000 trips people aren’t taking in their cars. And that’s a good thing.

Lfyt’s new carpooling service beginning of the end for public buses (Vox)

Dumb headline, dumb story. It’s great that Lyft is making it easier for passengers to split fares, but can Lfyt or any other car-sharing service really absorb (for example) the 1.1 million daily boardings on Metro buses? And are all bus riders — many using discounted monthly passes — really ready to pay the cost of using Lyft? Answer: no. There’s a much more realistic take on what Lyft and Uber are doing over at Streetsblog.

 

Open During Construction: Love’s Furniture

Construction continues along Crenshaw Boulevard for the Crenshaw/LAX Line, which means fencing and blocked lanes in order for work to proceed on the underground portion of the rail line. Though the area around the east side of Crenshaw north of Stocker Street may be difficult to navigate, the businesses located there are absolutely open during construction.

Some of the businesses in the area have been around for quite some time and provide important services for those in the neighborhood — and many of the merchants live in the community. Over the next few months, we’ll be highlighting some of the Crenshaw businesses on The Source to remind everyone that they are open and worth checking out. The video below features Love’s Furniture, located at 4082 Crenshaw Boulevard.

To access this location, you can park at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw. Limited street parking is also available along Stocker Street. Or take transit: Metro Bus 40, 210 and Rapid 710 travel through the area and the stop at the corner of Crenshaw/Stocker.

Related

Malai Hair Store
Women, Infants and Children’s Center 

Take Metro’s Dodger Stadium Express to Paul McCartney show Sunday

dodgers_map

And the answer is yes: Metro’s Dodger Stadium Express bus service is running Sunday night to the sold-out Paul McCartney concert at the ballpark. The bus between Union Station and Dodger Stadium is free to those holding a ticket to the show.

This is McCartney’s first show at Dodger Stadium since the Beatles played there August 28, 1966. Expect a huge crowd and the usual parking hassles that go with it.

The basics:

BOARDING LOCATION

  • Board the Dodger Stadium Express at Bus Bay 3 of the Patsaouras Transit Plaza at Union Station.
  • Service leaves Union Station every 5 to 10 minutes, starting at 5 p.m. (the show begins at 8 p.m.). Metro recommends arriving early; crowds will be heavier closer to the concert start time.
  • Your concert ticket is good for the Dodger Stadium Express fare*; otherwise, regular Metro fares apply.
  • You can exit inside Dodger Stadium at one of two stops – behind Center Field and at the Top Deck. Service will pick up at the same stops after the game.
  • Return service runs until 45 minutes after the concert ending.
  • Note: All Dodger Stadium Express vehicles are wheelchair accessible.

Parking at Union Station is $6. Union Station is also served by many Metro and municipal bus lines and Metro Rail’s Red, Purple and Gold lines, as well as Metrolink and Amtrak.

The last Purple Line train from Union Station is 11:47 p.m. Sunday. The last Red Line train from Union Station to North Hollywood leaves at 12:12 a.m.

The last Gold Line train from Union Station to Pasadena leaves at 12:12 a.m. The last Gold Line train from Union Station to East Los Angeles leaves at 12:12 a.m.

To plan the route that’s best for you, use the Trip Planner, Google Transit or call 323.GO.METRO. 

And for those who have never seen footage from the ’66 Beatles show:

That was their second-to-last concert — the last show was in San Francisco — until the Beatles popped up on a London rooftop in Jan. 1969, the year before their formal breakup:

A great one from McCartney’s Wings days (if you grew up in the 1970s, Wings and the Beatles were more or less on the radio constantly), played on Jimmy Kimmel in Hollywood last fall:

 

Go Metro Weekends, August 8 − 10

Breathing fire for a captive audience at Chinatown Summer Nights. Photo by Salina Canizales via Flickr/CC.

Breathing fire at Chinatown Summer Nights. Photo by Salina Canizales via Flickr/CC.

It’s summer, so take a vacation from traffic with one or more of the following transit-accessible events happening across our beloved City of Angels.

Friday

Join Metro Presents for free live music this Friday evening in the Union Station waiting room. The California Feetwarmers are known for their unique blend of New Orleans Jazz, ragtime and swing. Two free 45-minute performances start at 4 p.m. and 5 p.m., and dancing is encouraged! (Metro Red/Purple, Gold or Silver Line to Union Station, or various Metro and municipal buses serving Patsaouras Transit Plaza.)

For lovers of horror and film history: don’t miss the Universal Monster Mash triple bill at the Egyptian Theatre! See Tod Browning’s Dracula, Arthur Lubin’s Phantom of the Opera, and George Waggner’s The Wolf Man starting at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $11 general admission, $7 for members and $9 for students and seniors with ID. (Metro Red Line to Hollywood/Highland Station, Metro Rapid 780 or Bus 156/656 to Hollywood/Highland, or Bus 212/312, 217, or 222 to Hollywood/Las Palmas.)

Saturday

Discover how summer is celebrated in Japan at the Natsumatsuri Family Festival hosted by the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo. This free event runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is packed with exciting and educational activities for children. (For the full itinerary, visit the festival webpage.) Present your valid TAP card and receive $2 off adult admission and 10 percent off at the Chado Tea Room. (Metro Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station, Metro Bus 30/330 or 40 to Judge John Aiso/Temple.)

Boyle Heights restaurant Un Solo Sol Kitchen has organized a free musical event this Saturday in Mariachi Plaza, in honor of their 4th anniversary in business. The concert runs from noon to 10 p.m. and features DJs as well as local hip hop groups. Food will be offered at the restaurant, across East 1st Street. (Metro Gold Line to Mariachi Plaza or Metro Bus 30 or 620 to 1st/Boyle.)

If you’re seeing Jenny Lewis at the Wiltern (we’re jealous!) don’t forget that the Purple Line to Wilshire/Western is a great way to go! There is no maintenance schedule on the Red/Purple Line this Saturday night, which means trains will run every 10 minutes throughout the evening.

This Saturday is also the third and final Chinatown Summer Nights of 2014. From food to music, art and dancing, there’s something for everyone at this event that is fast becoming a staple of Summer in Northeast LA. Hop on the Metro Gold Line to Chinatown Station or various Metro and municipal buses serving Chinatown.

Sunday

Olvera Street hosts the 14th Annual Taste of Ecuador Food Festival this Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. This event is free and open to the public, and features traditional Ecuadorian music and dance, carnival booths, a raffle, and of course, plenty of food and products for purchase. (Metro Red/Purple, Gold or Silver Line to Union Station.)

How has film shaped narratives about veterans’ experiences, and are these representations changing? Celluloid Soldiers: Veterans through Hollywood’s Lens, a panel at the L.A. Central Library, will ask just that question of panelists Kirby Dick, Jean Oppenheimer, and Brayden Yoder. The panel is free to attend and runs from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Metro Red/Purple Line to Pershing Square Station.)

After Un Solo Sol’s party on Saturday, Mariachi Plaza will see a second anniversary celebration this Sunday: the Libros Schmibros “Feliz Aniversario” fiesta. From 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., an entry fee of $5 gets you music, horchata, tres leches cake, a year-long membership to the lending library and three books of your choice to keep. Sounds like fun — and a great deal! Go Metro and receive a free bookmark to boot. (Metro Gold Line to Mariachi Plaza or Metro Bus 30 or 620 to 1st/Boyle.)

All Weekend

Unique LA is back this Saturday and Sunday at the California Market Center in the Fashion District in downtown Los Angeles, with their annual summer mart of entirely made-in-LA products. Shop local artists, designers, and vendors. Entry is $10 for both days, and comes with free drinks and snacks from festival partners. (Metro Blue or Expo Line to Pico Station or Metro Red/Purple Line to 7th/Metro.)

Theater enthusiasts take note: this Friday and Saturday are the last two days of Redcat’s New Original Works Festival in downtown L.A.. Go Metro and receive 20 percent off tickets. For more info and how to get there, see our earlier Source Post.

Did we miss something? Let us know where you’re taking Metro this weekend in our comments section.

Go Metro to the LA Taco Festival and save on an All You Can Eat Taco Pass

tacofestflyer

The LA Taco Festival takes place Saturday, August 16 at Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights and we’re salivating already!

From 2 p.m. to 8 p.m., enjoy live music by local bands, entertainment, and a variety of tacos from the best vendors in East LA–all in one place. The event is open to the public. Tacos may be purchased a la cart for $4 each, or go all out with the $20 All You Can Eat Pass and feast on an unlimited supply of tacos!

And taco lovers who are Metro riders are in luck — show your valid TAP card at the Taco Fest ticket booth and save 10% on the All You Can Eat Pass. Please note that beverages and desserts are not included in the pass.

Getting to Mariachi Plaza on the Metro Gold Line couldn’t be easier. Just hop on an East LA-bound train to Mariachi Plaza Station and you’re there. Google Transit or Trip Planner can help you find your best route. Make sure to load up your TAP cards with enough cash fare for a round-trip or a Day Pass when starting your trip so you won’t have to wait in line at the TAP Vending Machines later on!

Transportation headlines, Thursday, August 7

Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on TwitterFacebook and Instagram. Pick your social media poison! 

ART OF TRANSIT: A cyclist on the bike path adjacent to the Orange Line -- this is the stretch just east of Hazeltine. More Orange Line stock photos free for anyone that needs them on our Flickr site. Just click above. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

ART OF TRANSIT: A cyclist on the bike path adjacent to the Orange Line — this is the stretch just east of Hazeltine. More Orange Line stock photos free for anyone that needs them on our Flickr site. Just click above. Photo by Steve Hymon/Metro.

$11 billion later, high-speed rail is inching along (New York Times) 

The top of the story:

WASHINGTON — High-speed rail was supposed to be President Obama’s signature transportation project, but despite the administration spending nearly $11 billion since 2009 to develop faster passenger trains, the projects have gone mostly nowhere and the United States still lags far behind Europe and China.

The article goes on to explain that most of the money was spent on building or planning to increase train speeds on relatively short sections of track around the country. It would still take $15 billion and 26 years to bring the northeast corridor tracks between New York and Washington up to Japanese bullet train speeds, the Times reports. The article also notes that California’s high-speed rail project recently won a key legal ruling but has been controversial.

Bedbugs found on at least three N Line subway trains (New York Daily News) 

Three trains in New York City were yanked out of service and sent to maintenance yards for immediate fumigation. This 2008 article in the New York Times discusses whether bedbugs can survive in transit stations. Short (and unfortunate) answer: yes.

Time to tie pay to Muni’s on-time performance (San Francisco Examiner) 

Fares are soon increasing a quarter on Muni trains and buses to $2.25 and this Examiner editorial proposes two responses: 1) tie the salaries of Muni executives to Muni’s ability to meet a goal of having buses and trains on time 85 percent of the time (it was 57.2 percent in 2013), and; 2) Enforce a 1993 ballot measure that required politicians who oversee Muni to ride it twice a week.

California’s slow ride to transit (San Francisco Chronicle) 

In this op-ed, Ethan Elkind complains that transit projects across the state are taking far too long to plan, bid and build — and he proposes some solutions. Metro’s Regional Connector is one of the examples he uses, comparing it to the time and expense of building a streetcar tunnel in downtown in 1925. Hard not to agree that the environmental review process in California and elsewhere takes far longer than necessary.

Passengers help free man trapped between train and platform (ABC News)

Watch the video from Australia. And let it serve as a reminder that being around things such as train platforms and busy streets — in L.A. and around the globe — demands your full attention. Put down your phones for a moment, people!

*****

And a little mid-day music courtesy of Spoon, which is playing the Hollywood Forever cemetery on Friday night. For those who want to take the bus to the show, use the Metro 4 Line that runs along Santa Monica Boulevard. The stops at Santa Monica/Gower and Santa Monica/Bronson are both close to the cemetery’s entrance. Red Line riders can transfer to the 4 at the Vermont/Santa Monica Station.