Other actions taken by Metro Board of Directors today — station names, L.A. River in-channel bike path, promoting discounted fares

Three other actions taken by the Metro Board of Directors at their meeting today that might be of interest:

•The Board approved the following official name changes to Metro Rail stations, although signage will often continue to reflect shorter names:

–The Blue Line’s Grand Station becomes the ‘Grand/Los Angeles Trade-Technical College Station.’

–The Expo Line’s 23rd Street Station becomes the “Los Angeles Trade-Technical College/Orthopaedic Institute for Children Station.”

–The Expo Line’s La Brea station becomes the “Expo/La Brea/Ethel Bradley Station.”

Metro staff were also instructed to implement the changes at minimal cost without using operating funds.

•The Board approved a motion by Board Members Mike Bonin and Gloria Molina instructing Metro to launch a multi-lingual ad campaign to promote fare subsidy programs prior to the fare increase scheduled to take effect Sept. 1 or after.

More information on reduced fares for seniors, disabled/Medicare passengers, K-12 students and college/vocational students and applications in nine languages can be found by clicking here.

•The Board approved a motion by Board Members Mike Bonin, Eric Garcetti and Gloria Molina to take steps needed to launch a study on building a bike path within the Los Angeles River channel between Taylor Yard (just north of downtown Los Angeles) and the city of Maywood, along with bike/pedestrian linkages to roads and sidewalks near the river. Motion

31 replies

  1. How about changing Metrorail line names to make them more politically correct:
    Red Line: Native American Line
    Green Line: Irish Line
    Silver Line: Senior Citizen Line
    Orange Line: Ulster Nationalist Line

  2. The 23rd Street Station name change is absurd. How could that possibly have been suggested with a straight face? How will Metro even fit that onto a sign?

    And since when do we need to name stations based on area “attractions?” I thought that’s what maps / PA announcements were for…

  3. I would also support station call signs. Seoul Metro has something similar too. They use three digit call signs


    For example, Sincheon Station has a call sign of 217, Gangnam Station has a call sign of 222. You know from the hundreds digit that it’s the Seoul Subway Line 2 and 22-17 = 5 stations away. No need to remember station names like Sincheon or Gangnam which will be difficult for non-Korean travelers to remember.

    If only Metro learned were more accepting of other cultures’ ideas instead of brushing them off, and more willing to integrate the best ideas from all over the world, LA would have the best transit system.

  4. mike dunn,

    You need to understand that there are many riders riding on Metro today that do not remember or have not experienced any of those experiences you’ve cited. Many 20-30 year olds today who are entering the workforce in this tough economic times, have large student debt, are increasingly avoid buying cars and opting to choose to take transit, have not experienced riding the P&E rail lines, do not know a Los Angeles where we had one of the best trolley systems in the world, that the city used to run a system with gates, used a variable fare system or rode Metro with free transfers. Most people in this Millennial generation don’t even know what predecessor agencies such as RTD or LACTC are.

    However, what the so-called Gen Y or Millennial generation also does is do a lot of travel throughout the world. They are one of the most culturally diverse generation and the generation that is most open to new ideas. They are also one of the most educated and most pro-technology generations in the world. When they visit other cities around the world, they see how great transit elsewhere and how backward ours are.

    So when you say “we had gates on the P&E lines, we gave out free transfers, we had a distance based system,” to the Millennial generation, they become confused. To them, it’s like speaking of the old days when items sold in the supermarkets had no barcodes. You say these are all old ideas that was tried in the past. To them, they see it as new ideas that are proven to work in the rest of the world, because they have not tried or experienced them here. All they rely on are their own personal experiences in traveling throughout the world and using transit everywhere they go. They HAVE NOT seen, experienced, or remember what LA used to be like in the past.

    When the Millennials were born in the 1980s and 1990s, the P&E rail lines were all trashed and Metro was already running under a flat rate $1.50 anywhere you go policy. That’s all they know. And they compare that to the use of technology, gates, and contactless card systems that are being used everywhere else they’ve visited.

  5. mike dunn,

    It seems that based on your frustrations in the past, your core frustration is based upon have a complete distrust of people against who have no transit experience running things.

    So, what’s wrong with hiring those who have transit experience, but instead, hiring transit officials from all over the world?

    Clearly we all agree that Metro is incapable of doing the most simplest of all things. It takes them forever to update a website shows their incompetence to do the simplest of all things that any 12 year old can do these days. It’s the perfect example of government not doing what it’s supposed to do and just wasting taxpayer dollars. The only ones who really benefit are the public transit officials who are getting paid handsomely through protective public employee unions for mediocre jobs and everyone else, the taxpayers, get screwed over and over again.

    So, why not replace everyone working at Metro with your colleagues, except from all over the world from cities that get transit right? I’m sure your counterparts and transit officials in NYC, Boston, London, Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore and Hong Kong who have been running excellent transit systems for decades know a lot more about running mass transit that the amateur dolts who currently run Metro today.

  6. So what if we implemented some ideas from Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong? They’re all the cities that have the best transit systems in the world just as great as NYC, Boston, London, Sydney, and Amsterdam. Isn’t this country founded upon bringing in new ideas from all over the world and not afraid of trying out new things no matter where they are from?

    There are many Asian-Americans living in Los Angeles along with whites, African Americans, and Hispanic/Latino. How’s that any different from implementing ideas from Europe as opposed to Asia? There is a cultural difference between LA and European cities just as there are cultural differences between LA and Asian cities.

    There’s a lot of ideas that Metro can learn from all over the world. Listening to transit ideas only from other US cities and Europe but dismissing Asian cities because of cultural differences is borderline racism. It’s not the way we should be thinking in a more globalized world where information and social media is right at our fingertips a few keyboard strokes away.

    Those who say that “I’m sick of hearing how they do things in Asia” and use “cultural differences” and bring up “I have experience/you don’t” as an argument shows how easily they shut off their minds of thinking through bigotry and selfish ego.

    I know someone else who used the “I have experience/you don’t” argument to justify their position. Dr. Robert Kehoe, a man of science who based on his “years of experience in the field” said that lead wasn’t dangerous and frequently used that argument to discredit the more younger and more “inexperienced” Dr. Clair Patterson’s research that lead was deadly. We all know who was right and who was wrong. Sometimes, “experience” means “blocking out everything” because of plain old bigotry.

  7. mike dunn,

    The issue of citing “cultural differences” as your main argument is weak at best and would not really win any arguments in any debate. There is cultural difference between LA and Tokyo. There is a cultural difference between LA and London. The same is also true between LA and NYC. There is a cultural difference between as close as LA and Orange County. Even with LA County there’s a difference of culture between West LA and East LA. Cultural difference exists everywhere so stating “we shouldn’t do this because it’s so different than what we’re used to” is simply blocking out any new ideas from ever taking shape without any rational analysis.

    If “cultural differences” is the argument you make, we might as well not even invest in mass transit at all because LA is a car culture which is way different from NYC and Boston. Nothing changes if “cultural differences” is the argument for any debate.

    Change only happens by questioning everything, analyzing everything, and coming to conclusions.

  8. I agree with technophile I’ve been to Japan, the trains in Japan are much more efficient and the station call signs such as M25 are helpful!! They don’t cram you into train cars outside of Tokyo trains are only packed during rush hour as there are 13 million people in Tokyo! as opposed to 3 million in LA! Please do some research before you comment! Of course American and Japanese cultures may be different but LA could learn from the Japanese transport system!

    But why on Earth would Metro the MTA make station names much longer and complex?? They should just make an announcement instead “Alight here for Los Angeles Trade Technical College” Long names are just unnecessary!! Just keep it 23rd street Station instead of “Los Angeles Trade-Technical College/Orthopaedic Institute for Children Station” Thats 9 words as oppoesed to 2 words which is way too long 23rd street station is a much better name!! Why Expo/La Brea/ Ethel Bradley? Please do keep Metro station names Short, Simple and represent the area the train provides service to.

  9. I don’t understand why the board voted to change the names. The trains go to the same place each time. I don’t think renaming stations is a good use of the board’s time or money. They can list the businesses/schools close to the station in the PA announcements as the train arrives at the station without changing the station signage. They could also change the businesses featured on the nearby signage, such as has been done for the red line stations. I think these changes in station names will only confuse people.

  10. A Technophile
    I’m sick of hearing how they do things in Asia and we should do the same here. But you and others fail to take into consideration cultural differences and operating strategies. The name of stations is just political foolishness. If they want to download these long diatribes into the automatic announcing system so be it. I think remembering station numbering might be as confusing and hard to remember especially for those who do not speak English.

    Why is it always FOX News comes up when some are trying to make their point? It has nothing to do with the issue.

    Locked gates are not new to Los Angeles. Free transfers are not new as well. Like I pointed out before many decisions are made based on theory not actual experience. When I drove many years ago we gave out free transfers. When buses ran out of the old Greyhound/RTD bus terminal they had gates. Even the old P. E. terminal had gates for both buses and rail at the terminal. It was someone from the LACTC who came up with the idea of no gates, they had no operating experience.

    The projected failure of the TAP system I spoke of was the idea that Bus Operators be issued only 20 TAP Cards a day to be sold to the public. This was the primary point of sale when TAP Cards were first introduced. They were to replace DAY PASS. At that time I was the manager of Westside Central’s Road Supervisors which were to have added to their duties distributing TAP Cards to Bus Operators when they ran short. Anyone in their right mind would have known more than 20 TAP Cards would be sold by a operator in a eight hour period. Not only did myself and the other managers change the initial distribution but demanded far more replacements were needed. My supervisors issued over one thousand TAP Cards to the Operators every day for the first two weeks. Can you imagine what would have happened if those who based their decisions on theory would have prevailed?

  11. It is ridiculous and a waste of taxpayers money to keep changing and adding names to train stations. It is going be worse than the freeways having to name portions of freeways and interchanges after people that most of us do not care about. I was appalled that you renamed and put up new and different signs at the Willowbrook Station three times. Also, if you decide to change Memorial Park Station to Old Pasadena, then you have to have a New Pasadena Station. Or maybe it should be Colorado Blvd in Old Pasadena.

  12. mike dunn,

    TAP is not going to go away. LA has spent millions of dollars in TAP, installed gates, installed TVMs, locked them, and have spent many years persuading Metro riders to TAP. There are many questionable inefficiencies that I have about the TAP system, but the last thing that’s going to happen is that we’re not going back to those wrinkly transfer tickets or paper passes. Not in 2014, not in 2020, not in 2050. Those days are gone.

    We as a society, are increasingly moving to a digital, systematic, automated world. Doing things the 1950s way in the year 2014 when millions of people take transit is not the way to go.

    TAP rather, will continue to evolve. We have now just started doing TAP reloads with SMS text messaging. Stupid idea that should’ve been done from the start and several years too late when everyone has adopted smartphones (thank you Steve Jobs), but it’s still an evolution of TAP technology.

    And it will keep moving in that direction. A better TAP website, ability to do real-time online reloads, online account management, trip history management, TAP apps on NFC enabled smartphones, automation by programming of different transfer policies, pass caps thresholds, and eventually variable fare pricing models.

    All of these, once thought unthinkable back in the 1950s, is possible now and have been proven to work in moving millions of riders everyday in major metropolitan areas all over the world.

    I thank you for your past service in the public sector. But it’s time to let go of your 1950s thinking and let the new age of transit begin. This is the year 2014, not the 1950s. Isn’t it time you start enjoying retirement instead of complaining and yearning for the old days?

  13. mike dunn,

    You’re confusing apples and oranges.

    I am have not suggested that Metro should consider the idea of shoving people into trains. I suggested Metro could take a lesson from Japan in the way they provide station call signs in addition to long confusing station names, which is relevant to the article at hand about station name changes. It’s a great idea logical idea that helps travelers (which LA does get a lot of) to navigate the system rather than trying to remember confusing long station names (and there are many visitors to LA who do not speak English).

    You’re the one who sarcastically said “Ya, we could learn alot from Japn like how to push people on to trains that are so crowded it seems criminal.” (mike dunn @ June 26, 2014 at 11:06 PM). Again, your words, not mine. Has absolutely no relevance to the article in question. You’re the one that brought up something totally irrelevant which has no relation to my suggestion.

    So don’t try to pull a Fox News attempt on me by derailing the subject to something else. Only pundits like those on Fox News does that.

    Furthermore, “things that work in Asia will not always work well here” seems to be your excuse for everything. Anyone can say that. “Thing that work in San Francisco/New York/Boston/Washington DC/London/Singapore/Tokyo/Mexico City/Caracas will not work here.”

    Well apparently, we now have locked gates so things that work in gated cities are working fine here. We decided to go with free transfers so things that work in free transfer cities are working fine here.

    “I know the projected downfall of the TAP system before it was implemented for instance.”

    As of June 27, 2014 the TAP card system is still alive and well. Sounds like your projected downfall was wrong.

  14. In due time, LA Union Station will be LA Union Station/Metro Headquarters/Olvera Street/Eric Garcetti Station.

  15. A Technophile
    As I have attempted to point out before, things that work in Asia will not always work well here. The same can be said about what works out here may not work out there. I’m not afraid of going to Japan or anywhere else. I just have no desire to travel there. The difference between you and I is I had a inside track as to how transit works while you have only experienced riding on different systems. And yes, the MTA has made many mistakes but in my opinion that has been caused by lack of actual experience as opposed to theory. I know the projected downfall of the TAP system before it was implemented for instance. Pushing passengers on to trains no matter what time of day would not be tolerated here as well as illegal. In Honolulu Hawaii they show how to ride the public buses in their system on public television aimed at the Asian visitors. They recognize there are differences and attempt to educate visitors that there are differences.

  16. mike dunn,

    Have you been to Japan and personally experienced the “push people on to trains that are so crowded it seems criminal” that you speak of?

    Sure I’ve seen the Youtube videos of it. But the difference between you and me is that that didn’t scare me and that I’ve actually went to Japan. And the reality was there was nothing like that when I went there. Maybe because I avoided during the massive rush hour crunch, which you can say the same thing for our freeways.

    Perhaps you need to open your eyes to see that we’re not the best in the world in running mass transit and there are things that we can stand to learn from other countries instead of just dismissing things for things that you do not understand.

  17. Spencer G: DC Metro is hardly a model to follow in station naming. Over the years, they have added numerous hyphenated suffixes to their station names as well.

  18. A Technophile
    Ya, we could learn alot from Japn like how to push people on to trains that are so crowded it seems criminal.

  19. The 23rd st. station name is ridiculous and never should’ve been allowed! People will just want to call it LATTC and will get confused with Grand. Why couldn’t they just add a symbol to the Metro map for nearby Hospitals like DC does, instead of renaming the station? Doesn’t seem like anyone thought about what was good or practical for the passengers here.

  20. Let’s rename the Metro Lines after politicians too. May I suggest renaming the entire Blue Line to the Ronald Reagan Line?

  21. When I had the opportunity to visit Japan, each station had an official name reflective of the area/district and also had official abbreviated station “call signs.”

    Instead of having to remember station names like Ikebukuro and Ochanomizu on the Marunouchi Subway Line, I remembered it as I go from station M25 to M20.

    I thought it was very smart way of doing things. M denoted I ride Marunouchi Line. 25 and 20 means that it’s 5 stations away. There was no need to remember tongue twisting station names which is hard for a non-Japanese person to do in Tokyo. All I had to do was remember the call signs.

    I suggest LA should do the same. The station names, even in abbreviated form, is getting too long to remember.

    Here’s an example of Tokyo’s subway map, with their complete names and official abbreviated call signs.

    Metro can stand to learn a lot of things from how Japan runs transit.

  22. When will the naming insanity stop ?
    The Phantom suggests:
    Expo/La Brea
    The politicians get a nice plaque at the station …

  23. “Los Angeles Trade-Technical College/Orthopaedic Institute for Children Station.”


  24. The Pico & Sepulveda (Expo/Sepulveda) station should be named in honor of Barret Hansen (aka Dr. Demento), the popular radio personality who cared a lot for Los Angeles and used the song “Pico and Sepulveda” by Freddy Martin (aka “Felix Figueroa”) and his orchestra.

  25. “Hey just meet me at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College/Orthopaedic Institute for Children Station”