UPDATE, OCT. 26: At their monthly meeting, the Metro Board approved going forward with all-door boarding on both lines.
The earlier Source post:
Metro staff is proposing to expand all-door boarding next year to two of the system’s busiest bus lines – the 720 Rapid on Wilshire Boulevard and the 754 Rapid on Vermont Avenue — to speed up transit trips and reduce the time buses dwell at stops.
Under the proposal, riders would be able to board at any door of a bus — front, middle or rear — and would pay their fare by tapping their TAP card on a fare validator that will be installed next to each door. That means riders will no longer have to line up and wait to board at only the front door of the bus.
Those paying with cash or tokens will be able to board at the front door, where they will be able to buy a TAP card and load it with fare. To encourage more people to use TAP cards, Metro will be handing out 50,000 TAP cards on both the 720 and 754 lines. Even better, the TAP validator will be on the left side of the front door, so those boarding there can literally go around those buying TAP cards or loading fare.
The proposal is scheduled to be considered by the Metro Board of Directors at their October round of meetings starting with the Executive Management Committee on Thursday at 11:30 a.m. at Metro headquarters adjacent to Union Station.
If the Board approves of the program, all-door boarding would be targeted to begin in June 2018 on the 754 and Dec. 2018 on the 720. All door boarding was tested on the 720 in 2015 and began on the Silver Line last year, where it has helped increase on-time performance by 10 percent.
The 720 Rapid Bus on Wilshire Boulevard carries about 29,019 boardings on the average weekday and the 754 on Vermont Avenue about 20,674 boardings, according to Metro’s most recent ridership estimates.