More line letters will soon be coming your way!
Most of you have probably already noticed our transition to the A Line (Blue) and E Line (Expo), and the brand new signage on the A Line. The rest of our rail lines are now following suit.
The updated line letter names will be as follows:
The plan is for all Metro Rail and Bus Rapid Transit stations to have updated permanent signage with line letter names within the next few years. During the transition, riders may see both color and letter symbols throughout the system.
The service colors in use will remain the same. We’ll also use a transitional naming system using both the letter and the color to refer to the line, as in the graphic above. For example: A Line (Blue). This transitional naming will eventually be phased out.
On digital platforms such as our website, digital kiosks and transit apps, you’ll start seeing changes within a few weeks. Printed material will be updated as the opportunity arises, and we will prioritize timetables and maps in order to keep riders informed.
For those curious as to why the Crenshaw/LAX Line does not have a letter name at this time, staff is still working to finalize the operational plan.
The Metro Board of Directors approved an update to the naming convention in November 2018. The reasons for the update are:
- Consistency: Consistency is the key to improving legibility, ease of use and trip information on the transit system. Our previous line naming convention was not consistent.
- Accessibility: We have received customer feedback that some of the colors on our map are difficult to distinguish (e.g., red/purple, blue/aqua), especially for riders who are color blind. Adding a second identifier to line names helps avoid this issue.
- Future planning: our system is growing, which is great news, but it means that we’re running out of clearly distinguishable colors for our future line. Adding a letter as a second identifier for our line names will allow us to have a predictable and consistent naming system as we grow.
And before leaving a comment, let me preemptively address some of the questions/comments I’ve seen on social media and in media coverage.
- No, we’re not trying to copy New York City. Many other transit systems around the world use letters because it’s a clear and easy to use method to label transit lines on a map.
- Yes, we’re omitting some letters already commonly used on maps (H for hospitals or I for information point, for example).
- We know that some of you will continue using the colors to refer to the lines, and that’s okay. However, all of Metro’s official materials will be using line letters and, in time, we think everyone will become accustomed to the new line letters.
- What is the future of the L Line (Gold)? We’re currently building the Regional Connector, which will tie together the Blue, Expo and Gold Lines. When the Regional Connector opens, the plan is for the Long Beach to Azusa line to become the A Line while the Santa Monica to East Los Angeles will become the E Line. The L Line (Gold) name will be retired.