Metro adds more free bus service for weekend of 405 closure in Sepulveda Pass

The agency had previously announced free service on the Orange Line busway and the Red and Purple line subway on the weekend of July 16-17, when the 405 will be closed over the Sepulveda Pass for the partial demolition of the Mulholland Bridge.

In addition, the Metro Board of Directors last month gave Metro CEO Art Leahy the discretion to add other free service. Leahy has chosen to add 26 bus lines which should greatly help riders move between the San Fernando Valley and the Westside — as well as provide an alternative to freeways that are expected to be clogged that weekend.

Many Source readers have asked about 761 Rapid Bus service between the Valley and the Westside. Now we have an answer: the bus will continue to use Sepulveda Boulevard as it normally does over the Sepulveda Pass. Sepulveda Boulevard will only be open to local traffic and 761 riders should expect much longer travel times than usual, due to congestion in the area.

Here is the news release from Metro:

In addition to providing free rides on the Metro Orange, Red and Purple Lines, The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) today announced that it will make 26 additional Metro Bus Lines free the weekend of July 16-17 when the I-405 will be closed between the I-10 and U.S. 101 for Mulholland Bridge demolition work.

Metro selected bus lines for free fares that operate on major Westside and San Fernando Valley streets in areas most affected by the closure. Free rides on the selected bus lines are intended to help mitigate congestion during the closure weekend.  Free fares are being offered on the following Metro bus lines:

  • 2 Downtown LA-Pacific Palisades via Sunset Bl
  • 4 Downtown LA-West Hollywood-Santa Monica via Santa Monica Bl
  • 20 Downtown LA-Santa Monica via Wilshire Bl
  • 33 Downtown LA – Santa Monica via Venice Bl
  • 150 Canoga Park-Universal City Station via Ventura Bl
  • 152 Woodland Hills-North Hollywood Station via Fallbrook Av
  • 155 Sherman Oaks-Burbank Station via Riverside Dr, Olive Av
  • 156 Van Nuys-Hollywood-Panorama City
  • 158 Chatsworth Station – Sherman Oaks via Devonshire St, Woodman Av
  • 161 Thousand Oaks Transit Center-Warner Center
  • 183 Sherman Oaks-Glendale Station via Magnolia Bl
  • 224 Sylmar Station – Universal City Station via San Fernando Rd & Lankershim Bl
  • 230 Sylmar-Studio City via Laurel Canyon Bl
  • 233 Lake View Terrace-Sherman Oaks via Van Nuys Bl
  • 234 Mission College-Sherman Oaks via Sepulveda Bl & Brand Bl
  • 236 Sylmar Station-Encino via Glenoaks Bl & Balboa Bl
  • 240 Northridge via Reseda Bl
  • 242 Porter Ranch-Woodland Hills via Tampa Av
  • 243 Porter Ranch – Woodland Hills via Winnetka Av
  • 244 Chatsworth Station-Woodland Hills via De Soto Av
  • 245 Chatsworth Station – Woodland Hills via Topanga Canyon Bl
  • 656 Van Nuys/Hollywood Owl
  • 704 Metro Rapid – Downtown Los Angeles – Santa Monica via Santa Monica Bl
  • 720 Metro Rapid – Santa Monica/Commerce via Wilshire Bl & Whittier Bl
  • 733 Metro Rapid – Downtown Los Angeles/Santa Monica via Venice Bl.
  • 761 Metro Rapid Pacoima/Westwood via Van Nuys Bl & Sepulveda Bl. (Note: buses will be using Sepulveda Boulevard between Ventura Boulevard and Getty Center Drive. Passengers should expect greatly extended travel times on this line between Sherman Oaks and Westwood due to anticipated traffic congestion).

Regular fares will apply for all other bus and rail lines during the closure weekend.

Metro has announced that is also adding 61 buses and 32 rail cars to enhance service on the bus and rail lines serving the area which will be impacted by the I-405 closure.

Service will be increased on Metro Local lines 2 (Sunset Bl) and 150 (Ventura Bl), Metro Express Line 534 (Malibu), Metro Rapid lines 704 (Santa Monica Bl), 720 (Wilshire Bl), 733 (Venice Bl), 761 (Van Nuys Bl) and the Metro Orange Line. The Metro Red and Purple lines will operate larger trains with 10-minute frequencies throughout the weekend.

Metro will closely monitor traffic congestion on all routes in the I-405 construction area and will make needed adjustments to bus service based on the current traffic conditions. Transit patrons should, however, anticipate longer trip times to reach their destinations and plan accordingly.

For additional information on Metro bus schedules, visit For more information or updates about the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project, visit

The Mulholland Bridge is being torn down in stages and replaced as part of the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project, which is adding a northbound carpool lane between the 10 and 110 freeways and making numerous fixes to on- and off-ramps along that stretch of freeway.

Related posts:

Officials answer your questions about 405 closure

Opinion: the 405 closure as an argument for multi-modal transportation in L.A.

Officials plead with public to avoid 405 closure area July 16-17

405 closure: how bad is traffic going to be?

News release announcing 405 closure for Mulholland Bridge partial demolition

How the Mulholland Bridge was constructed

15 replies

  1. I’m glad that Metro finally decided to reserve Sepulveda for buses and residents only, though I wish it hadn’t taken a month of badgering to get them to do it.

    Can somebody please explain why, with only buses and residents using Sepulveda, Metro is expecting congestion?

  2. “Carmaggedon” is perfect opportunity to showcase the benefit of transit-only lane on surface streets. Too bad we can only visualize free bus fare and not “out of box” thinking that will get people to where they need to go faster than driving.

  3. The Rapid 761 needs to have priority transit lane access during Carmaggedon. Otherwise, everybody will just crawl through the pass. We should encourage people to utilize public transit and that’s by giving the bus priority, which will move for people than cars.

  4. Did you know there is already a Topanga Canyon shuttle – the Warner Center Beach Bus?

    Unfortunately, they run cutaways on the line (small buses on van frames for those not up to bus lingo) – usually enough for the dozen or so kids that ride it from Topanga, but not for the entire Valley. Now how about extending the hours and having it run on Sunday, Zev?

  5. I think this is a very good move. Sure it may not be ideal but I do think metro is listening on this one. I’m just glad that there will actually be direct public transit over the hill. But yes it should also continue to show how desperately we need a fixed non traffic transit option in this corridor. Also, wouldnt the 761 be faster due to restricted car access on Sepulveda blvd? I mean, 90 percent of the traffic wouldn’t be there if it’s well enforced.

  6. MTA CEO Art Leahy needs to be replaced , his judgements and decisions are extremely bad at times. While I find it good to offer additional and free service on the Westside. Rerouted traffic will be all around the 110 freeway making is also unberable , we need to have the trains run 24 hours during these two nights to relieve congestion off the already busy 110 freeway. Memo to Art – Look at the entire picture time is running out before it comes and you can not change your mind when it is too late.

  7. Why isn’t the MTA adding a bus line through Topanga Canyon. I’d have the Topanga Cyn bus begin at the Chatsworth Metrolink/Amtak station go down all the way through Topanga Canyon and then down PCH then end up near the 3rd St. Promenade in Santa Monica and have this route run 24 hours every 10-15 minutes with stops in the canyon itself and if this route becomes a huge success then continue it as a regular route to relieve congestion through the Sepulveda Pass.

  8. @Juan

    Here’s a better idea, knock off two lanes on the 405 on both sides and run a rail track through it and call it the 405 Line.

    It definitely serve its purpose of alleviating one of our most traffic congested freeways, reducing the number cars, and connecting the vital route of SF Valley-Westwood/UCLA-Mar Vista-Culver City-LAX-South Bay-Long Beach-Irvine.

    Metro wants us to take public transit, yet they’re pouring money to widen the 405 so people can drive more. I really don’t understand the logic of this carmageddon thing.

  9. A real city would maintain high quality transit throughput, i.e., a dedicated lane on Sepulveda Blvd through the pass, during construction.

    Too bad LA is merely a veneer of a city.

  10. Is there any plan to assure that Sepulveda is only used for local access? If this surface route were kept open and free-flowing, the 761 bus could be a great alternative.

    Will there be any enforcement? A toll on Sepulveda, 101, and the other mountain roads during the closure would be a great idea. Locals (who are all rich, living in the hills and all) could choose to pay the toll, or driving a long way to take another route, and people who need to get from the valley to the westside (such as hospital employees who work on weekends) could choose to pay the toll, or have their employer pay for them.

    And if the toll was too expensive (and it should be for most of us, if this is going to work), you could take the 761 bus instead, and use connecting transit to get to your destination at the other end.

    A toll on 101 would be a great way to provide an alterate route, as well.

  11. Increasing transit subsidies when transit demand is the highest is one way to go….

    Another way to go is an experiment in managed lanes. When the 405 closes down again next year to tear down the other half of the bridge.

    1. Mail 2 free access passes to each household in Sepulveda corridor. These must be displayed in the windshield for a vehicle to have free access to Sepulveda Blvd.

    2. Run trunk line buses from the Sepulveda Orange line station to a makeshift transit hub in the parking lot of the Westwood Federal Building. Reroute Wilshire & UCLA Service (Metro 2,20,302,305,720,761, BBB and CC Bus) to the transit hub in the federal building. Run UCLA Bruin bus for connecting service to campus. Continue the buses to the Aviation Green Line station.

    3. Sell excess vehicle capacity on Sepulveda Blvd at key parking lots near the controlled access routes. One-way permits would be valid for one day in one direction. Prices would vary as needed to manage supply for permits.

    4. Distribute limited numbers of access passes to hospitals and other critical sites. Hospitals can then organize vanpools to utilize congestion-free sepulveda.

    5. Control access to Sepulveda and ticket vehicles that do not display permits in windshield.