New weekend pilot program on Blue/Expo Line to keep rail cars running smoothly

Fresh out of the paint shop, this rail car is refurbished inside and out. Next stop: components overhaul or replacement.

Some of you may have noticed this past weekend that we’ve been running two-car trains along the Blue and Expo Line instead of the usual three. This is part of a new pilot program meant to reduce wear and tear on our Blue/Expo Line rail cars, which are some of the oldest in the fleet. By running shorter train cars during the weekend, when there are fewer riders, Metro’s rail fleet services department will have more time to work on more vehicles so that they’re ready to operate at full capacity during the week.

This ultimately means fewer delays during the week, as we won’t have as many disabled trains clogging up the lines.

Of course, weekends with big events that impact Metro Rail will be taken into consideration. For example, this coming Saturday is USC football’s home opener at the L.A. Coliseum, and Metro Rail will be running enhanced service on game day. But on Sunday and Labor Day Monday, we’ll be scaling back to two-car trains on the Blue/Expo Line.

We’ll keep you updated on any events that will see enhanced service on Metro Rail. In the meantime, until those brand new rail cars start rolling into service (which won’t be until next year), our maintenance crews will work on keeping our current rail cars running smoothly.

13 replies

  1. Anyone remember, do the newer cars have horizontal poles and straps to make it easier for standees?
    The existing lack of handholds and straps is less safe IMO and may be contributing to those reports of a ‘personal space’ issue.

  2. My inner grammar freak has to point this out: there are *fewer* riders on the weekend, and you’re anticipating *fewer* delays during the week.

    • Pat,

      I have edited because I can’t believe I missed those. I can only blame lack of sleep and not enough coffee! #grammernerdsunite

      Anna Chen
      Writer, The Source

  3. On weekends the blue line carries 3/4 the weekday ridership with half the train frequency. Now on top of that trains will be 1/3 shorter meaning that trains will be even more crowded than they already are. And you’re spinning this as a positive for Metro?

  4. This would be terrible, inward facing seats gives little more standing room, but makes it more uncomfortable for the rider innless only riding a few blocks. In the past local LA Yellow Cars had inward facing seats in the center sections on the older cars, They were so unpopular that as cars were rebuilt the seating was upgraded to cross facing seats. We can learn from their early experience..

    • “This would be terrible, inward facing seats gives little more standing room, but makes it more uncomfortable for the rider innless only riding a few blocks. ”

      As more people take to the trains, it will be in the best interest for Metro to put in more passengers per rail car and the cheapest way to do that is seat re-alignments to increase aisle space, which is what the vast majority of mass transit oriented cities have done, from NYC to Boston, from Tokyo to London.

      NYC subway seat alignment
      //www.ridingfootloose.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/2011-10-17-Day-28-New-York-016-copy.jpg

      Boston MBTA seat alignment
      //www.asergeev.com/pictures/archives/2003/364/jpeg/22.jpg

      London Underground seat alignment (with foldable seats so that the train can be standing space only for rush hour)
      //citytransport.info/Digi/P1120190a.jpg

      Tokyo Yamanote Line (foldable seats so that the train can be standing space only for rush hour)
      //i.imgur.com/3Bcp7Vo.jpg

      Unfortunately, one can’t say stuff like “I wish LA had an excellent mass transit system like Boston, NYC, London and Tokyo” but pick and choose what they like about it but disregard what they don’t like about them (less seats, increased aisle space).

      All things considered, the average trip on Metro Rail is only 12 miles which is about a 30 minute ride. The vast majority of people are healthy enough to stand for 30 minutes. The seats should be kept to a minimum, reserved for the elderly, disabled, and the pregnant, again what is the norm in most major transit oriented cities around the world.

      Besides, be thankful we haven’t these levels yet:

      NYC:
      //youtu.be/aXUxYSJhBQo

      Boston:
      //youtu.be/OBZB9Z3jsCQ

      London:
      //youtu.be/iC07gxUYSIU

      Tokyo
      //youtu.be/0c30vwyUGak

      Seoul
      //youtu.be/0c30vwyUGak

      Beijing
      //youtu.be/xG-meaGqg-M

      But when it does, what else is left to do other than get rid of seats?