As many of you hopefully know by now, the Blue Line is in the midst of the New Blue Improvements Project, a comprehensive $350-million modernization to improve reliability, enhance safety and provide a better customer experience. The project is now in its ninth week.
Crews have been installing new rail and an updated overhead power system, and upgrading stations, along the southern half of the Blue Line. We’ve also installed new train control bungalows, removed and replaced underground conduits for electrical utility, and performed general maintenance at closed stations. The station area upgrades include deep power washing, painting, upgrades to the signage and installation of new digital customer information kiosks.
Construction has been focused on replacing at-grade rail crossings along all intersections of the Blue Line between 1st Street at Downtown Long Beach Station and Willow Street at Willow Station.
As a reminder, during the south closure of the Blue Line Metro is running three levels of shuttle service to help riders travel between Downtown Long Beach and 103rd Street/Watts Towers Station.
A few other key dates to keep in mind as the project progresses:
• June through September 2019: Rail service will be suspended from the Willowbrook/Rosa Parks to 7th St/Metro Center and replaced by bus shuttles. The Blue Line will continue running between Compton Station and Downtown Long Beach Station. Red and Purple Line service will operate normally at 7th St/Metro Center. We’ll have more details about the bus shuttles as we get closer to May.
• Expo Line trains will not be running between 7th/Metro, Pico and LATTC/Ortho Institute Station. Expo Line trains will continue to run between LATTC/Ortho Institute Station and Downtown Santa Monica. We will have exact date and time as we get closer to the northern closure.
• Willowbrook/Rosa Parks Station will be closed for all eight months — until September. That will allow the station to be rebuilt with more capacity, a new customer service center and community plaza, easier connections to local buses and surrounding communities and upgrades to safety and security systems. During the closure, Green Line service will operate normally at Willowbrook/Rosa Parks Station.