Transportation headlines, Tuesday, October 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 TRANSPO: Yeah, I'm really into black-and-white lately. Pony kegs are unique to Cincy as far as I know--small corner markets that sell, well, you know. I shot this one last night during my ongoing sojourn to the Queen City (it's a help-the-parents thing). Photo by Steve Hymon.

ART OF TRANSPO: Yeah, I’m really into black-and-white lately. Pony kegs are unique to Cincy as far as I know–small corner markets that sell, well, you know. I shot this one last night during my ongoing sojourn to the Queen City (it’s a help-the-parents thing). Photo by Steve Hymon.

Request to the baseball Gods: a true blue Royals-Dodgers World Series please, following a Giants-Dodgers NLCS. I think the last time that the Dodgers-Giants met in the post-season was 1951…

Sure looks like Thomson may have missed third base to me. If you have a DeLorean, please check that out. Whatever happens this season, the Dodger Stadium Express is prepared to roll for Game Five of the Division Series on Thursday, the NLCS and the Fall Classic.

Metro to aid businesses chocked by construction (Intersection South L.A.)

Coverage of the Metro Board of Director’s vote last week to create a $10-million pilot “business interruption fund” program to reimburse small businesses harmed by construction of the Crenshaw/LAX Line, Regional Connector and/or the first phase of the Purple Line Extension. Excerpt:

The pilot program will fund up to 60 percent of potential business revenue loss, as long as the businesses can document to Metro that construction is causing the loss. Since businesses are already suffering from the construction, many board members were ready to help out.

“It certainly is a way to add the most public good and create the least private harm,” said Jacquelyn Dupont-Walker, a Metro board member. “Not a day goes by that I don’t hear from a business owner or a non-profit on the Crenshaw/LAX line about the impact that our work is having on them currently.”

Complaints have included blocked parking, accessibility and signage.

 

CicLAvia No. 10: huge, wonderful, happy, but no longer newsworthy? (Streetsblog LA)

Joe Linton looks at the lack of press coverage for Sunday’s “Heart of L.A.” CicLAvia (Metro was an event sponsor) and notes that advance coverage tends to run along the lines of “beware of closed streets!” As far as I can tell, the non-media crowd seems to love the events and treats occasional road closures as something routine and not something potentially catastrophic :)

There’s a brand new vocabulary being heard on the streets, NYC planning rock star says (UCLA news release) 

Former Gotham transportation commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan (an Occidental grad, btw) gave a talk to a packed auditorium at UCLA the other night. She’s best known for turning parts of Broadway in New York into pedestrian plazas, greatly expanding bike lanes across the city (including protected bike lanes) and installing more BRT lanes. Excerpt:

Sadik-Khan concluded the lecture with a word of caution and advice. Recounting the ways the media reported negatively on the changes she implemented in New York City, she explained that, “when you push the status quo, it can push back.” She added: “We are simply not going to create healthier, safer, more sustainable cities with the strategies that we followed up till now, that ignore all the other ways that a street is used.”

Her recommendation to the diverse audience of planners, academics, citizens and those who work daily in city government on these problems was this: “All sorts of new options are taking hold and planners need to adapt to these new changes and understand the way people want to get around. And we’re really just starting to glimpse what this shared economy means for transportation and cities.”

I saw her speak in L.A. a couple of years ago and thought she lived up to the hype. Here’s my write-up of that talk. Obviously, I’m a fan of hers and think it would be great to have someone like her permanently working in our region — she has the rare combination of clout, political and oratory skills to get things done.

High-speed rail line takes first step toward buying trains (Sacramento Business Journal) 

It’s a very preliminary step — asking rail car manufacturers to submit letters of interest. The California High-Speed Rail Authority will eventually ask for formal bids. Whether the cars are eventually ordered likely depends on how much of the line the agency is able to fund and build.

With no new rail tunnel on the horizon, a looming transportation crisis in New York (The Transport Politic) 

Good post by Yonah Freemark on the brewing controversy in New York. Amtrak says its two rail tunnels under the Hudson were damaged by Hurricane Sandy and need to eventually be repaired. Problem is, shutting down one tunnel at a time for repairs would greatly curtail the number of Amtrak trains into and out of Manhattan — the busiest Amtrak hub. One solution is a new set of tunnels, but New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie canceled that project in 2010 citing cost concerns.

Excerpt:

But the cost of losing the rail link under the Hudson may be larger. Amtrak’s leadership of this project is an acknowledgement of the national importance of this line (is it the nation’s most important transit project?), as it is the essential rail link not only between New York City and points south, but also between all of New England, Long Island, and much of Upstate New York with points south — totaling almost 10 percent of the U.S. population. The next rail connection over the Hudson is more than 140 miles north, just south of Albany. It is also the connection that makes it possible for hundreds of thousands of New Jerseyans to work in Manhattan.

Trying to think of something analogous to our region. Perhaps it’s this: imagine what would happen if two of the following — the 10, 60 or 210 — had to be entirely closed for a year?

 

A few pics and tweets from CicLAvia, the heart of L.A.

Thank you to everyone who participated in yesterday’s “Heart of L.A.” CicLAvia presented by Metro and we hope you had a great time.

Next up: the South L.A. CicLAvia on Dec. 7, which should be easy-to-reach via the Blue Line and Expo Line.

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First Metro Open Street Event: CicLAvia: Heart of LA this Sunday

This Sunday’s CicLAvia: Heart of LA presented by Metro will be the first in a series of 12 events that Metro is funding through the Metro Open Streets Grant Program. The Metro Board of Directors approved the Open Streets Program in September 2014, and is providing $4 million for “Open Streets” events in the next two years.

Open streets are events which temporarily close the streets to automobiles and open them up to people to re-imagine and experience their streets while walking, biking, rollerblading or pushing a stroller in a car-free environment. The goals of the program are to encourage sustainable modes of transportation (biking, walking and transit), provide an opportunity to take transit for the first time and foster civic engagement.

Heart of LA1Heartof LA 2Heartof LA3Heart of LA 4Heart of LA 5

 

 

What to expect from Metro Bus and Rail during CicLAvia this Sunday

CicLAvia - October 5, 2014

CicLAvia, presented by Metro, returns this Sunday with more streets to explore sans vehicular traffic. Heart of LA will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and feature brand new hubs in Echo Park, the Broadway Theatre district, Boyle Heights and East L.A.!

Though some of the route is new this time around, it’s as easy as ever to Go Metro to CicLAvia. The event is accessible via–count em’–11 Metro Rail stations, and bikes/skateboards/rollerblades/etc. are welcome, provided some rules are observed (more on that to follow).

What can customers expect of bus and rail service during CicLAvia? Metro Rail will follow the regular Sunday schedule on October 5, but with longer, rush hour-length trains during the event and through the evening to accommodate extra bikes, boards, and people.

On the bus side, street closures will impact Metro Bus routes beginning at 6 a.m. until approximately 5 p.m. the day of the event. Though the Heart of LA course has numerous crossing points for vehicular traffic, Metro customers should expect bus detours and delays, including temporary bus stop relocations along the route. Impacted Metro Bus lines include: 2, 4, 10, 16, 18, 20, 28, 30, 40, 45, 51, 53, 55, 60, 62, 66, 68, 70, 71, 76, 78, 83, 92, 96, 460, 487, 720, 733, 745 and Metro Silver Line.

For more information about detours on specific lines, visit Metro’s CicLAvia Service Advisory page and scroll to the bottom.

By the way, if you have your valid TAP card, receive 15% off official CicLAvia shirts at the East LA Civic Center hub!

Also, please remember that bike etiquette in the station and on the train is even more important during a crowded event like CicLAvia. Cyclists planning to go Metro to the route, please review and observe the following rules:

  • When boarding, use entire platform length for more seating and bike space availability. Large groups should separate and enter through different doors to reduce crowding and delays.
  • Board with bikes using doors marked with yellow decals.
  • Always walk your bike within Metro stations or on trains.
  • For everyone’s safety, do not bring bikes on escalators; use the stairs or elevators instead.
  • Elevator priority will be given to passengers with disabilities.
  • Do not use emergency exit gates at turnstiles except during emergencies or unless directed by law enforcement or Metro personnel.
  • Observe all Bikes on Metro guidelines.

Like Metro, CicLAvia offers an alternative way to connect with our wonderful city and each other. To all who attend, have a fun and safe time–if you snap any good bikes-on-transit photos this Sunday, tweet us @metrolosangeles or tag us on Instagram @metrolosangeles! And for those who arrive via our buses and trains: thanks for going Metro.

Happy Walktober!

It’s that time of year again, when pumpkin spice takes over the land and the air starts to feel just a little bit crisp. Hard pass on the pumpkin spice (eggnog only, thanks!), but I do plan on enjoying the cooling fresh air with a lot more walking…especially as it’s Walktober!

During the month of October, get out and add a few more steps to your day. Not only will it be good for your health, it’s a great way to explore and connect with your neighborhood and other transit options, reduce your carbon footprint…and it could change your daily commute for the better.

Commuter Ryan Long walks to his Metrolink station so early in the morning, it's still dark out!

Commuter Ryan Long walks to his Metrolink station so early in the morning, it’s still dark out!

Don’t take our word for it! Here’s Ryan Long, who commutes via walking and train ride from Lancaster to downtown Los Angeles every day:

“The early morning walk to the train station for me starts at 4:30 a.m. Living in Lancaster, I see rabbits, coyotes, lizards and many other cool walks of life along the way. A short 12-minute walk is a great way to stay fit and clear my mind. I exercise daily, and this is a great jumpstart. I arrive at the station and am greeted by a lovely church group that hands out donuts and coffee for free! How great! The two-hour ride from Lancaster to Union Station provides me with time to sleep. My coworkers poke fun at me, thinking I am greatly inconvenienced by making this trip. They do not know that I get an extra four hours of sleep per day! I can also catch up on my books, movies and television shows! I have met many great people along the way and would not trade this for the stressful car drive ever again.”

Ryan shared his story with us when pledging to share the ride, and you should pledge too, for a chance to have your story featured on The Source (and the chance to win some awesome prizes).

Want to get walking but not sure where to start? CicLAvia is just around the corner, and all walkers are welcome. So as tempting as it is to spend the entire weekend marathoning Gilmore Girls on Netflix…break out the walking shoes and put those feet in gear!

How to save 15 percent on your CicLAvia T-shirt on Oct. 5

CicLAvia_HOLA_2014_Map

CicLAvia – Heart of LA, presented by Metro, is set to take place on Sunday, October 5, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The 10-mile route is the first to leave the City of Los Angeles as it ventures into East Los Angeles and the County of Los Angeles. Heart of LA will cross through downtown L.A. and will extend into entirely new areas including Echo Park, the Historic Broadway Theater District and through Boyle Heights all the way to East L.A.

Show your CicLAvia pride by getting an official T-shirt at the East LA Civic Center Hub! If you have your TAP card, you’ll save 15 percent on shirts while supplies last. (Offer is only valid at the East LA Civic Center Hub.) And while you’re out exploring Los Angeles sans car, make sure to support local businesses. Show your TAP card and save at numerous locations along the Heart of LA route.

There are five other hubs along the Heart of LA route that are accessible via Metro; see above map for all hub locations and their adjacent Metro stations. Bicyclists who want to get to CicLAvia by Metro should review Metro’s bike rules.

This Sunday: CicLAvia explores Broadway and so should you

CicLAvia-Explores-logoIn anticipation of the October 5 CicLAvia – Heart of LA, CicLAvia will explore one of downtown Los Angeles’ historic neighborhoods on Sunday, September 7. Join CicLAvia for a day of food, free tours and a screening of the movie Mulholland Drive in the Broadway Theater District. The day on Broadway runs from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. with the movie screening starting at 6 p.m. Tickets are required for the movie, the cost is $10.

Another thing we love about Tacos Tumbras a Tomas? The liberal use of avocado. Photo by Matthew Kridler/Metro

Just one of the many delicious food items you can enjoy at Grand Central Market. Photo by Matthew Kridler/Metro

 

Grab lunch at Grand Central Market before exploring Broadway! From tacos to sticky rice, pizzas to ice cream, the market has something for everyone to enjoy. Show your valid TAP card and provide your email address at the information desk located on the Hill Street side of the market and receive a $2 off token to be redeemed at any food and non-alcoholic drink vendor in the market. This offer is only valid on September 7.

To reach Grand Central Market, take the Metro Red or Purple Line to Pershing Square Station and exit towards 4th Street. For more routes and connections, use the Trip Planner.