Alas, no rain forecast but umbrellas are up

Pershing Square Station Canopy. Photo by Jose Ubaldo/Metro.

Pershing Square Station canopy. Photo by Jose Ubaldo/Metro

We’re talking, of course, about the canopies at the Red Line Pershing Square Station, which were just completed this week. Pershing Square is the last in the initial series of umbrellas that went up at three Red Line stations to protect the escalators (and riders) from the elements and hopefully extend the good health of the escalators that suffer from the elements. Healthy escalators are those with less down time and this is a happy thing for those of us who, during escalator repairs, must revert to the stairs. (Yes, we know the walk is healthy but in heels?) Another benefit of the canopies is that they are safer during a storm. A wet escalator can be a slippery surface.

Perhing Square view from under canopy. Photo by Jose Ubaldo/Metro

Perhing Square view from under canopy. Photo by Jose Ubaldo/Metro

So here are a couple of photos of the new canopies that are of the same design at all three stations: MacArthur Park, Civic Center and now Pershing Square. More Red Line stations will be covered but not for a bit. And, frankly, it’s a good idea to  make sure the current design is doing the best possible job of keeping rain out but allowing California sunshine in. Now all we need is a little rain.

9 replies

  1. Is there a transit agency in the US that hasn’t made this mistake? Escalators hate being out in the rain.

  2. Why are the canopy lights kept on during the day? Seems very wasteful and not consistent with Metro’s green policy.

  3. The only escalator I’ve ever fallen on in my life was the Pershing Square escalator in the rain.

    Only took 20 years to cover the steps, but better late than never.

  4. If only the same level of rider-focused, design INTELLIGENCE was utilized when building the UPPER level of El Monte Station!

  5. The McArthur Park station is still missing one canopy. One was completed months ago, yet no work has started on the one next to it???

    • Hi Jose,
      The second entrance to the Westlake/MacArthur Park Station will be covered by the next phase of the transit-oriented, mixed use development MacArthur Park Apartments. So they will be protected by a building, rather than a canopy.

  6. They should do ALL of the stations, and I thought that was the original plan? They make the station much more prominent, and weather isnt only a problem atbthose stations. Screw the escalators, what about exiting passengers lol? Metro, I love ya, but your consistency is awful.

  7. I recently saw one of these thought it worked well. Will probably save on escalator maintenance down the road too. Curious though, is there a concern with all the different types of stations/materials/art work on all the various lines that when replacement parts or maintenance is needed that it will become costly due to custom parts or uncommon/specific/complex repair skills? Seems like most other systems intentionally limit the variety to very specific easy to maintain or inexpensive components and standardize most other things but Metro is going in the other directions.

    • Hi Ken,
      The three sets of canopies are all exactly the same, for the good reason you suggested. But the art in the stations is meant to be unique. It’s created by artists and photographers to enhance the spaces and make the system more beautiful. Theoretically, except for the graffiti factor, the art won’t need maintenance.