You probably heard the announcement earlier this hour by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti: an agreement has been reached with the International Olympics Committee for our region to host the 2028 Summer Olympics and Paralympics, pending a vote by IOC members in Lima, Peru, in September.
In terms of local transportation, a lot will change between now and 2028. That is thanks to Measure R and Measure M, the two transportation ballot measures approved by L.A. County voters in 2008 and ’16, respectively.
Many Olympic events (here’s a map) will be clustered in a few areas around our region, with three major “sports parks” adjacent to rail or bus rapid transit lines in downtown Los Angeles, the Sepulveda Basin in the San Fernando Valley and the Long Beach waterfront. Other venues are also near transit (Santa Monica Beach, the Rose Bowl, the new football stadium in Inglewood, StubHub Center, to name a few) or will be served by shuttle buses from transit and other destinations.
I’ll try to bring everyone up to speed quickly on the Metro end of things.
We currently have three rail projects under construction:
•The 8.5-mile Crenshaw/LAX Line between the Expo Line and Green Line, which is scheduled to open in fall 2019. An additional station at Aviation Boulevard and 96th Street is scheduled to open in the early 2020s and will be the transfer point to the future LAX people mover serving the airport’s passenger terminals. The people mover will be built by Los Angeles World Airports.
•The 3.9-mile first section of the Purple Line Extension from Wilshire/Western to Wilshire/La Cienega with stations at Wilshire/La Brea and Wilshire/Fairfax. A second section to downtown Beverly Hills and Century City and a third section to Westwood are scheduled to be completed in the mid-2020s.
•The 1.9-mile Regional Connector that will connect the Blue, Expo and Gold Lines and is scheduled to open in late 2021. When done, Metro will run two light rail lines: one between Azusa and Long Beach and the other between East Los Angeles and Santa Monica. The two lines will be share five stations in DTLA.
Several other transit projects are scheduled to be completed in the next 11 years and will make it easier to get around the county and reach Olympic events. They are:
•An extension of the Gold Line from Azusa to Claremont with other stations in Glendora, San Dimas, La Verne and Pomona. With funding from San Bernardino County, the line could be extended to Montclair.
•A bus rapid transit project on Vermont Avenue that will be adjacent to the L.A. Memorial Coliseum and Exposition Park.
•A high-capacity transit line (either bus rapid transit, tram or light rail) that will run on Van Nuys Boulevard and San Fernando Road between the Orange Line and Sylmar/San Fernando Metrolink station.
•The first phase of an Artesia-to-Union Station light rail line.
•A bus rapid transit line between North Hollywood and Pasadena with connections to Burbank, Glendale and L.A.
•Upgrades to the Orange Line to improve bus speeds and travel times.
Under the direction of the Metro Board (which includes Mayor Garcetti) and Metro CEO Phil Washington, the agency continues to look for ways to accelerate projects as long as other projects aren’t negatively impacted.
The bottom line: with an expanding transit network and special bus shuttles, the 2028 Olympics and Paralympics will be pretty easy to enjoy without having to drive.
Below is a Metro’s Measure M timeline: