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Expo Line to La Cienega. Photo by Haywood Galbraith
It Begins Service to La Cienega this weekend
Los Angeles residents will be able to get from downtown to Jefferson and La Cienega beginning Saturday, April 28 when the new Expo Line begins its phase 1 service. The train will push further on to downtown Culver City in June, said Metro officials. Phase 2, taking passengers to Santa Monica ,will be completed in four years.
For now, service will begin at 5:00 am and end at 12:30 am. However, Metro CEO Art Leahy said they are working on a later end time to accommodate L.A.'s burgeoning night life.
"Metro is excited about opening the new Metro Expo light rail line," said Leahy.
"[This is] the first time the traffic-choked Westside will see rail passenger service in half a century. We're also gearing up to open the Metro Orange Line bus way extension to Chatsworth in the San Fernando Valley soon. These and other transit projects in the pipeline will give commuters and others, real options for parking their cars, hopping on the bus or train and beating high gas prices."
"The opening of Expo line is a critical step towards creating the multifaceted transit network that Angelenos deserve," Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa told reporters during a recent Expo Line media tour.
"When Angelenos rallied together to pass Measure R, voters sent the message loud and clear that we want transit options beyond the single passenger automobile. Los Angeles has been leading the way to improve and expand our infrastructure and support jobs."
MTA will hold opening celebrations Saturday along its entire route, starting at 7th St/Metro Center Station - 7th street between Figueroa and Hope.
"Rides on the Metro Expo Line opening weekend will be free both days from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m.," officials said.
"(Trains will run on a special schedule for the opening weekend.) Please note that the Farmdale and Culver City stations will not be open and will be bypassed by all trains. These two stations are still under construction and are set to open this summer."
MTA has continued to address the safety concerns of residents who live and attend schools near the rail.
"Metro relies on the community as partners to make rail safety a priority," officials said in March.
Efforts to ensure safety include placing what they call "safety ambassadors" at various intersections along the railway, helping people "safely navigate around the system." They've also involved themselves with schools near the line's route, educating students on rail safety. Safety presentations have taken place at libraries, community centers and senior centers in the area, they said.
For more information visit www.metro.net.