Metro and Los Angeles Sheriff's Department begin effort to reduce loitering and improve safety at North Hollywood Red Line station

Here’s the news release from Metro:

NORTH HOLLYWOOD – Fulfilling a request from Councilmember Paul Krekorian, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s (LASD) Transit Services Bureau, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) North Hollywood Division and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) have joined in efforts to enhance safety at the North Hollywood station of the Metro Red Line by installing new security cameras and “No Loitering” signs.

Temporary video surveillance cameras have been in place around the ground level plaza while preparations are made for permanent installation of dedicated security monitoring. Metro maintains security cameras and monitoring within the North Hollywood station, at the platform and inside Metro Red Line trains. In addition, “No Loitering” signs have been installed to prevent persons without valid transportation business from remaining in the area for extended periods of time.

“The people of North Hollywood have a fantastic resource in the Metro Red Line subway and we want to make sure it remains safe and easy to use,” said Councilmember Paul Krekorian. “Metro, the LASD and LAPD have done an excellent job keeping the neighborhood and the North Hollywood station safe and we are always looking for ways to enhance the experience of riders on the subway.”

Constituent feedback to the Council District 2 office has included complaints that there have been people loitering around the plaza and unauthorized vendors setting up shop. If left unaddressed by law enforcement, Metro and the Council office, these things could lead to litter, disruptive public behavior and crime.

Temporary video monitoring is conducted through five trailer-mounted cameras on a telescoping mast that provide high level views of the plaza and parking lot. The “No Loitering” signs comply with Metro’s Code of Customer Conduct prohibiting unnecessary lingering in Metro facilities or vehicles were it interferes with use.

25 replies

  1. Isn’t one of Metro’s key objectives to provide a better, more transit oriented environment through mixed use designs? Then why is Metro not promoting a more mixed use concept of their own stations? Why don’t they make a good example out of themselves?

    Metro actions like these only show that they do not believe in what they say.

    How are they to convince business owners along Metro projects about mixed use concept designs when Metro doesn’t provide a good example on their own on their own existing properties?

  2. I prefer are more lively environment than being just a “pass through” space. I feel much safer in public transit spaces in Europe and Asia that encourages such activities going on because people are always there instead of passing by. If it’s just pass through space, then it’s nothing different from driving and passing through all the interesting things that you never know existed.

    Metro should encourage entrepreneurs and artists by letting them operate their businesses within Metro property. I agree, Metro could actually be making extra income if they start licensing and renting out spaces than spending millions in dollars in cops everywhere like the police state we’re becoming. The potential for the city to earn more sales taxes is a good point too.

    After all, we as taxpayers all pay for these public spaces, it should be open to all by the public.

    The reason why there are illegal vendors is because there’s demand for it. People want to buy and sell things. So many people are using transit these days there’s got to be more than just going from point A to point B. If there’s demand for it, legalize it, license it, collect rent, and collect sales taxes. It’s a win-win for everyone than just saying flat out no to everything.

    Oh and another thing, let us use our TAP cards to buy goods and services. I can do this in Asia because my transit cards are able to buy stuff like drinks and food from shops and restaurants than just using it for transit. That way, you can promote the usage of TAP even more if the capabilities extend beyond to buying real goods and services than just keeping it just as a form of payment solely for transit use.

  3. I prefer a sterile (and safe) environment which is used for ‘pass through only.” Mass transit is for transportation, not entertainment or vending.

  4. Metro is public transit. Repeat that over and over again. Public transit. PUBLIC transit. P-U-B-L-I-C transit.

    That means, the stuff that Metro operates is ours, owned by the people of Los Angeles County. We, as taxpayers own and pay for all of this. The tracks, the bus, the stations, the computers that the Metro employees at One Gateway Plaza, the salary and pension benefits that they are rely on; everything is ours. Just like parks, the sidewalk, the street, the LADWP, the police, firefighters, it’s ours, paid for by taxpayers of LA County.

    Metro thinks they are above everyone else. They need a hard smack on the head to know who the boss is. If it weren’t for us, these people won’t have jobs!

  5. Great. So if I’m minding my own business and reading manga on my tablet as I wait up for a friend who’s running late at a Metro station, I’ll be charged and arrested for criminal activity because I’m “loitering.”

    Who writes these stupid laws? People who don’t use public transit should stay the heck away from writing up ridiculous laws.

  6. I certainly understand the need and desirability of making the areas around stations safe, welcoming, and accessible. But Metro really needs to start viewing these areas as the public space that they are, not gated private areas only designed to serve ticketed passengers. If there are people hanging out in the stop area, these are the people this transit stop is designed to serve. If there are vendors moving through selling things, that’s because there are people and demand for items for purchase in this area.

    Metro has a bad habit of designing nice wide open transit stops that look great in architectural renderings with little thought into how this space will fit into the surrounding neighborhood or be used by people in the area.

    If there are vendors in these areas, why isn’t Metro setting up kiosk style vendor spaces and making money from the service offered while providing better service to their riders and the surrounding neighborhood while making the stop area more vital, integrated into the surrounding area, and safer.

    I’m not saying it should be “anything goes” at stops just like you don’t tolerate that in any public space. But trying to create sterile, empty environments designed only to move bodies from one transit vehicle to another is not how you create safe, welcoming spaces that fit into a neighborhood.

    (@John Doe – Metro is a public agency, so the land they own is public land. Doesn’t mean they can’t control what goes on there. But this is our land in our city, not some private venue.)

  7. This is just as stupid like saying gun control laws work. Earth to Metro: criminals don’t care about the law or signs.

    Why is Metro’s answer to everything “ban this and that.” Why not find ways to legalize the practice so that you guys can earn rent income and even help the city earn additional sales taxes?

    That’s the core of the problem. The illegal vendors do not pay into the system. They do not pay anything to operate their business nor do people pay sales taxes when you buy from them.

    But if you ban them, it’s just going to be one step again in the wrong direction. We’re supposed to be encouraging entrepreneur ship, not restricting them.

    So the answer is LEGALIZE them. Dedicate a space for them to run their business, rent them out, and collect sales taxes from the goods they sell. Work with big name retailers like Walgreens and McDonalds to open up shops inside the station. They have millions in capital and are great ways to legalize merchant operations within the system, pay rent, and collect sales taxes, all the while eradicating illegal vendors through competition.

  8. The signs are not to scare away loiterers and criminals. The signs are used to help enforce the law. Instead of the officers simply telling people that they can’t loiter, and then in return be accused of making up rules and laws, the officers can simply refer to the posted signs. It’s much easier and effective that way.

  9. And on the other side of the Pacific, Asian mass transit corporations make additional revenue by charging rent space for shops and retailers that operate within their compounds.

  10. Maybe Metro should charge the illegal vendors for the space they use. With the money Metro gains from rent maybe Metro can hire security for the station.

  11. I agree with the first commenter. “No trespassing” signs aren’t going to impress criminals and loiterers. I’ve contacted the MTA on numerous occasions because one of these hucksters with a cart full of junk he’s trying to peddle always insists on dragging his monstrosity onto the Lankershim 224 bus. He’s constantly trying to shove his way past my wheelchair, even though his cart is too big to fit through the aisles. I actually have to put my hand out and block him from trying to slam his stupid cart into my wheelchair. If he ever breaks my wheelchair, I’m going to send the MTA a repair bill for the damages.

    These are the things law enforcement needs to focus on. How about: “No, you actually can’t get on the bus with a home-brewed peddler’s cart that is so bulky and oversized that it blocks the aisles for all passengers, and puts everyone else at risk of injury.” Or: “No, you can’t get on the bus with an enormous pole that has helium balloons and toys attached.” What planet did these people fall off of and end up at the Noho Redline station?

  12. I am guessing these will be as effective as the “No Gangs” signs posted in Baldwin Park.

  13. So which is it, Metro – do you want your stations and plazas to be lively areas that people may actually enjoy from time to time, or sterile environments that we should “only pass through” on our way to more hostile, auto-dominated environments?

  14. Keeping out these vendors is a good idea! Now if the MTA could just get them OFF the Blue, Red, and Expo Lines! If these idiots are not taking up space at a station, they are treating each rail-line like it is a ROLLING SWAP MEET! It needs to stop! These fools need to be removed!

  15. So this means the “plaza” outside the “bandshell” at NoHo station will NO LONGER HAVE, tamale vendors, jewelry vendors, etc., and people will not feel like they have walked into (or through!) a swap meet?

  16. John Doe,

    INCORRECT. Metro facilities are PUBLIC property – it’s paid for by taxpayers of Los Angeles.

    If Metro can make profit on their own and pay for the maintenance and upkeep of their station from their own revenue stream then fine. But Metro is reliant on taxpayer dollars to keep them afloat so everything that goes into Metro station’s operating expenses and maintenance are paid and subsidized for by taxpayers.

    Basically these stupid overreaching laws and regulations are just that – stupid and just adds to more LA becoming ever more a nanny state. Define loitering. There is no definition of it. What’s the difference between hanging around the station for 10 minutes versus 11 minutes? Nothing. It’s subjective.

  17. Metro facilities are private property correct, if so they have the right to keep people out. Another thing is that if we want people to ride transit it needs to be safe, thats what Metro is trying to do. I ride the redline although not to North HOllywood. Still, this is something Im glad they are addressing. Next should be the blue line, I dont get on that line after 5pm. lol call me weak but the perception of that line is not good to say the least.

  18. Just curious, what is considered loitering, and what is considered expression of free speech in a public place? Many of us are familiar with the various preachers who seem to favor that station. They have no “valid transportation business” as the article states. Examples of what I mean:

    (at 2:40 you can see security/police walk over but do nothing. This leads me to believe their “loitering” is protected free speech, correct?)

    So….how is “valid transportation business” defined? Is Metro enforcing this to remove specific people they feel are trouble?

  19. hmm I wonder who would be making these complaints…. all I can say is some of the loiters .make the area more lively with some good music! and not to mention the vendors are nice to have… why not just charge them $5 a day o so.etching to set up shop. it helps liven the area up.

  20. Lets just the say the crowd at this station is not the best society has to offer. Loud mouths, singing, dancing, smoking stuff, harassing, littering, etc. Who would have thought the people at this location is worse than what you see on the Blue Line.