How to get to Smorgasburg LA

One of my favorite Sunday morning activities is stuffing my face with delicious and Instagrammable food, so I’ve been to Smorgasburg LA a few times since it opened. In fact, I’ve been to it so many times already that I feel compelled to write about it, even though Smorgasburg is — disappointingly — not in the most transit-friendly location.

Smorgasburg LA takes place every Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., on the outskirts of downtown L.A. at the Alameda Produce Market, and the area isn’t really walkable. Which is to say, you could walk from Little Tokyo/Arts District Station…if you don’t mind a 25-minute walk down barren sidewalks around empty warehouse lots, which is an intimidating walk even on the best of days.

Metro buses Line 53 and Line 66 stop in the area on weekends, which is great if they work for you. But I come in from a different direction…plus my friends always end up driving in from further away, so they just swing by to pick me up from Union Station after I hop off the Gold Line. (You could, of course, also Lyft or Uber from Union Station, which I’ve done as well.)

Prior to now, Smorgasburg also hasn’t offered much in the way of bike parking. Sure, tons of car parking is free for the first two hours in the nice new garage, but bike racks were sparse in the offering and hard to locate. But that’s supposed to change this Sunday: Smorgasburg is setting up a bike valet service, which is great because it means you don’t have to worry about anything happening to your ride while you eat and shop.

Although there aren’t any bicycle lanes on Alameda, Central or Olympic, the reduced number of big rigs on Sunday morning streets means it’s not that nerve-wracking to bike on down — even for one such as I, someone who is prone to panicking when biking on DTLA streets.

So what do you think? Would you be willing to bike to Smorgasburg LA once the bike valet service is available? If you do, please let me know how it goes! After all the pie I ate this past weekend, I should probably stay away from Smorgasburg for awhile…

9 replies

  1. Looking at the Metro system map, it appears that Ms. Chen has alerted us to another transit Black Hole. Thank You!

    I was hoping to find a better route from my South Bay BH but no luck. Bus40->GreenLine->BlueLine->Bus351 is one more transfer but at least it avoids the common Silver Line DTLA event / construction / filming gauntlet north of I-10.

  2. Would never go down there on a bike or transit. Too dangerous, even in the daytime.

  3. Brilliant omission by Ms. Chen of the exact location so the rest of us can figure out our own transit/travel arrangements, or maybe she thinks it’s only for those who already know about it. Why is Metro even paying her to write for The Source?

    • It literally says it is at the Alameda Produce Market and links to the webpage so you can see the address…

      Anna Chen
      Writer, The Source

  4. i biked there last weekend from the expo line pico station; i had arrived via metro from santa monica and always find it easier to bike to my DTLA destinations from that street level station rather than handle the unwieldy metro transfers with my bike. getting there was a breeze via 9th/olympic/alameda (i’m a bike commuter, so i’m fine sharing the road with vehicles). the only issue i had was the bike parking. while there was an entire parking structure for cars, there was a small rack for bikes near the entrance (the kind where you lock up your wheel — and we know how secure those are) and a few more of the “:better” variety off in a back corner of the parking structure, where someone could easily jack your bike and no one would notice. anyway….. long story short, a bike valet would be ideal!

  5. I say VOTE YES ON Measure M. Then metro should hurry and build West Santa Ana Branch light rail extension and build the northern portion downtown first. There is a stop planned at 7th/ Alameda in the best of the four alignment options and that could be very useful for future growth in this section of downtown. Btw, SunCal has plans to build on a 15 acre lot at 6th and alameda just north of The Row making good transit options all the more necessary there.

  6. We went this weekend. I had my bike, My wife used bike share from 4th and Main which she dropped at Industrial and Mill On the way back we picked up a bike at 12th and Stanford, dropping it at Pico Station. The walk from Smorgasburg to the bike Docks were about a mile. On the way there, the trip was heart wrenching, since we traveled through the heart of skid row. On the way back, the streets were mostly deserted with the exception of in the Fashion District. It would be nice if in addition to the bike valet, a bike share dock was at Smorgasburg.