Expo Line (Los Angeles Metro)

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Metro Expo Line
LACMTA Circle Expo Line.svg
Expo Line train at Culver City Station platform looking east.
Expo Line train at Culver City Station platform
looking east.
Overview
Owner Metro Rail
Transit type Light rail
Line number 806
Number of stations Phase 1: 12 (in service)
Phase 2: 7 (under construction)
Daily ridership Phase 1: 31,710 (July 2014; avg. weekday)[1]
Phase 2: 64,000 (estimated 2030)[2]
Website BuildExpo
Operation
Began operation Phase 1: April 28, 2012; 2 years ago (2012-04-28)[2]
Operation will start Phase 2: 2016 (expected.)
Operator(s) LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA)
Character Mostly at-grade in private right-of-way, with some street-running, elevated, and trench sections.
Number of vehicles Phase 1: Siemens P2000,
Nippon Sharyo P865 and P2020
Phase 2: Kinki Sharyo P3010
Train length 2–3 cars
Technical
System length 8.6 mi (13.8 km)[3] (Phase I only)
15.2 mi (24.5 km)[2] (Phases I & II)
No. of tracks 2
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
(standard gauge)
Electrification 750 V DC overhead catenary
Top speed 55 mph (89 km/h)
System map
mi.
min.
Tail Tracks
0.0
0
7th St./Metro Center
Flower St.
0.7
2
Pico
I‑10
Blue Line to Long Beach
Washington Bl.
1.6
5
LATTC/Ortho Institute
I‑110
2.1
9
Jefferson/USC
Flower St. trench
Figueroa tunnel
Exposition Bl. trench
2.7
11
Expo Park/USC
3.1
13
Vermont
4.1
16
Western
Arlington Av.
7th Av.
11th Av./Degnan Bl.
5.6
20
Crenshaw
Buckingham Rd.
6.2
22
Farmdale
6.8
24
La Brea
Hauser Bl.
7.7
26
La Cienega
Jefferson Bl.
Ballona Creek/
City of Culver City
National Bl.
Washington Bl.
8.7
29
Culver City
End Phase 1
Venice Bl.
City of Los Angeles
Bagley Av.
National Bl.
9.6
31
Palms
Motor Av.
I‑10
Northvale trench
Overland Av.
11.0
34
Westwood
Westwood Bl.
Military Av.
11.5
35
Sepulveda
I‑405
Sawtelle Bl.
Pico Bl.
Gateway Bl.
Barrington Av.
12.6
38
Bundy
City of Santa Monica
Centinela Av.
Maintenance facility
Stewart St.
13.6
40
26th/Bergamot
26th St.
Cloverfield Bl.
Olympic Bl.
20th St.
19th St.
14.3
42
17th/SMC
14th St.
11th St.
Lincoln Blvd.
7th St.
5th St.
15.3
44
Downtown Santa Monica

The Expo Line (formerly the Air Line) is a light-rail line which resumes former rail service between Downtown Los Angeles and Culver City. The line is named "Expo" as Exposition Boulevard, named after Exposition Park, runs alongside most of the route. It is one of the six lines in the Metro Rail system, and is operated by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro). The first portion of Phase 1 of the Expo Line opened in April 2012;[4] the remaining two stations of Phase 1 opened on June 20, 2012.[5] Phase 2 of the Expo Line, with service between Culver City and Santa Monica, is currently under construction, and is planned to begin public service in the first half of 2016.[6]

Service description[edit]

Route of the Expo Line

Construction[edit]

The line is being built in two phases; the first phase comprises the 8.6-mile (13.8 km)[2][4] section between Downtown Los Angeles and Culver City. Construction began in early 2006 and most stations opened to the public on April 28, 2012.[4] The Culver City and Farmdale stations opened on June 20, 2012.[4][5]

Design and construction on the 6.6-mile (10.6 km)[2] portion between Culver City and Santa Monica started in September 2011, with opening anticipated in the first half of 2016.[6]

Hours of operation[edit]

The Expo Line operates from approximately 5 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. on weekdays and until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.[7]

Headways[edit]

As of June 2013, trains run approximately every 12 minutes during the daytime, every 10 minutes during the evening, and every 20 minutes after midnight.[7][8][9]

Speed[edit]

Maximum speed on the route is 55 mph (89 km/h), though it generally runs much slower than this.[10]

History[edit]

Train in downtown Santa Monica, 1894

Steam railroad[edit]

The line was first built in 1875 as the steam-powered Los Angeles and Independence Railroad to bring mining ore to ships in Santa Monica harbor and as a passenger excursion train to the beach—first independently and later after purchase by the Southern Pacific Railroad in 1877. When the Santa Monica harbor closed to shipping traffic in 1909 the line was leased to Pacific Electric who converted it to electric traction.

Early electric service[edit]

By 1920 the line was called the Santa Monica Air Line[11] providing electric-powered freight and passenger service between Los Angeles and Santa Monica. Electrically-powered passenger service stopped in 1953 but diesel-powered freight deliveries to warehouses along the route continued until March 11, 1988.[12]

Abandonment[edit]

While Southern Pacific maintained ownership of the right-of-way after 1988, it no longer used or maintained the rails. Portions of the right-of-way were leased for use as storage facilities, parking lots, impound lots, and various businesses, but no permanent structures were built.

Community rescue[edit]

The abandonment of the line spurred concerns within the community to prevent the line from being sold off piecemeal—destroying one of the few remaining intact rail corridors within Los Angeles County. Advocacy groups including Friends 4 Expo Transit[13] supported the successful passage of Proposition C in 1990, which allowed the purchase of the entire right-of-way from Southern Pacific by Metro (LACTC).

Metro successfully lobbied the federal government to use the remainder of Red Line funding for a different project to the Mid-City district of Los Angeles in 1998. That same year Los Angeles County voters approved Proposition A, another sales tax increase for transit, allowing Metro access to additional funds for transit projects. Metro then released a Major Investment Study in 2000 which compared bus rapid transit and light rail transit options along what was now known as the "Mid-City/Exposition Corridor".[14] Construction began in August, 2010.

Proposed developments[edit]

Regional Connector Transit Corridor[edit]

The Regional Connector Transit Corridor (also known as the Regional Connector, Downtown Connector or Downtown Light-Rail Connector) is an under-construction light-rail subway corridor through Downtown Los Angeles that is designed to connect the current Blue and Expo Lines to the current Gold Line, and to allow a seamless one-seat ride between the Blue and Expo lines' current 7th Street/Metro Center terminus and Union Station.[15]

Once the Regional Connector Transit Corridor is constructed, the Eastside leg of the Gold Line will be connected to the Expo Line, which by that time will be running between Downtown Los Angeles and Santa Monica. At the same time, the northern leg of the Gold Line through the San Gabriel Valley will be joined with the current Blue Line connecting downtown Los Angeles and Long Beach, creating what will be the longest light-rail transit line in the United States. Names and/or colors for these new lines have not yet been officially announced, but it seems likely that the current Expo Line-eastern leg of the Gold Line will become the new Gold Line, and the Blue Line-northern leg of the Gold Line will become the new Blue Line. The groundbreaking for the construction of the Regional Connector Transit Corridor took place on September 30, 2014, and the alignment is expected to be in public service by 2020.

Station listing[edit]

Metro Expo Line heading westbound to Jefferson/La Cienega Station leaves Expo/Crenshaw Station.
Interior of a westbound train, first day of operation to Culver City

The following is the complete list of stations from Downtown Los Angeles traveling west.

Station Connections/Notes Date opened City
7th Street/Metro Center  Red Line Metro Red Line
 Purple Line Metro Purple Line
 Blue Line Metro Blue Line
 Silver Line Metro Silver Line
Metro Local: 14, 16, 18, 20, 37, 51, 52, 53, 55, 57, 60, 62, 66, 70, 71, 75, 76, 78, 79, 81, 96, 316, 352, 355, 357, 378
Metro Express: 442, 450, 460, 487, 489
Metro Rapid: 720, 760, 770
Antelope Valley Transit Authority: 785*
City of Santa Clarita Transit: 799*
Foothill Transit: 481*, 493*, 497*, 498*, 499*, 699*, Silver Streak
LADOT Commuter Express*: 409, 422, 423, 430, 431, 437, 438, 448, 534
LADOT DASH: A, B, C (weekdays only), DD (weekends only), E, F
Montebello Transit: 40, 50, 341*, 342*
Orange County Transportation Authority: 701*, 721*
Santa Monica Transit: 10
Torrance Transit: 4

"*:Indicates commuter service that operates only during weekday rush hours.

February 15, 1991 Downtown Los Angeles
Pico  Blue Line Metro Blue Line
 Silver Line Metro Silver Line
Metro Local: 30, 57, 81, 330, 357, 442, 460
LADOT DASH: F
LADOT Commuter Express: 419, 422, 423, 438, 448
July 14, 1990
LATTC/Ortho Institute  Silver Line Metro Silver Line
Metro Local: 37, 55, 81, 355, 442, 460
Metro Express: 450, 460
LADOT DASH: D, F, King-East
Torrance Transit: 4
April 28, 2012
Jefferson/USC Metro Local: 38, 81, 102, 200
Metro Express: 442
LADOT DASH: F, King-East
April 28, 2012 University Park
Expo Park/USC Metro Local: 81, 102, 200
Metro Express: 442, 550
LADOT DASH: F, Southeast
April 28, 2012
Expo/Vermont Metro Local: 102, 204
Metro Rapid: 754
Metro Express: 550
LADOT DASH: F, Southeast
April 28, 2012 Exposition Park
Expo/Western Metro Local: 102, 207
Metro Rapid: 757
April 28, 2012
Expo/Crenshaw Metro Local: 210
Metro Rapid: 710, 740
LADOT DASH: Midtown
April 28, 2012 Jefferson Park
Farmdale Metro Local: 38 June 20, 2012 West Adams
Expo/La Brea Metro Local: 38, 212, 312
LADOT DASH: Crenshaw
April 28, 2012
La Cienega/Jefferson Metro Local: 38, 105, 217
Metro Rapid: 705
Culver CityBus: 4
"TheLink": Baldwin Hills Parklands Shuttle
April 28, 2012
Culver City Metro Local: 33, 220
Metro Rapid: 733
Metro Express: 534
Culver CityBus: 1, 5, 7
Santa Monica Big Blue Bus: 5, 6, 12, Rapid 12, Rapid 20
June 20, 2012 Culver City

Operations[edit]

Maintenance facilities[edit]

The light rail vehicles used on the Expo Line are maintained at the division 11 yard in Long Beach, California, the same maintenance facility that is used by the Blue Line. However, the new division 14 yard, located east of Stewart Street and north of Exposition Boulevard[16][17] in the vicinity of the 26th Street/Bergamot station in Santa Monica, is slated to open with the completion of Phase 2.

Rolling stock[edit]

Compatible with the rest of Metro's light-rail network, the Expo Line shares standard Metro light rail vehicles (Nippon Sharyo P865 and P2020, and Siemens P2000) with the Blue Line. Metro estimates that it has 47 light rail cars to provide service on the Expo Line under the peak-hour assumption of 3-car trains running at 6-minute headways.

Upon completion of Phase 2, it is expected that new P3010 light rail vehicles (LRVs) from Kinki Sharyo,[18] that were ordered by the L.A. Metro board of directors in 2012,[19] will begin operation, replacing the current LRVs in operation on the Expo Line. (See: Los Angeles Metro Rail rolling stock article.)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ridership Statistics - Rail Ridership Estimates". LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). August 20, 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-25. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Expo Line project fact sheet". LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). 2012. Retrieved 2013-10-06. 
  3. ^ "Facts at a Glance". LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). Retrieved 2013-11-16. 
  4. ^ a b c d "L.A. Metro - Facts at a Glance". LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). June 13, 2013. Retrieved 2013-06-28. 
  5. ^ a b "Two more Expo Line stations to open June 20". Los Angeles Times. June 5, 2012. Retrieved 2013-10-06. 
  6. ^ a b Zeller, Heidi (March 30, 2015). "Art for the Expo Line: installation at Expo/Sepulveda Station". The Source. LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). Retrieved 2015-03-31. 
  7. ^ a b "Expo line timetable" (pdf). LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). June 23, 2013. Retrieved 2014-04-20. 
  8. ^ "Bus and Rail System (map)" (pdf). LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). December 2013. Retrieved 2014-04-20. 
  9. ^ "Expo Line FAQ". The Source (LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA)). April 2, 2012. Retrieved 2013-10-06. 
  10. ^ Hymon, Steve (November 22, 2011). "Our first ride on the Expo Line". The Source. LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). Retrieved 2015-03-31. 
  11. ^ "Santa Monica Air Line". Electric Railway Historical Association of Southern California. 
  12. ^ Morgenthaler, Anne (March 14, 1988). "END OF THE LINE—The last train out of SM blows a final whistle". Santa Monica Outlook. 
  13. ^ The Expo Line - Friends 4 Expo Transit Home Page
  14. ^ "Mid City Westside Transit Draft EIS/EIR: 1.0 History, purpose and need". LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). 
  15. ^ "Regional Connector Transit Corridor (project website)". LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). March 19, 2015. Retrieved 2015-03-31. 
  16. ^ "Construction Overview". Build Expo. 2013. Retrieved 2015-03-31. 
  17. ^ Hymon, Steve (March 21, 2012). "Expo Line maintenance facility". The Source. LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). Retrieved 2015-03-31. 
  18. ^ "Light rail vehicle procurement". LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). June 17, 2010. Retrieved 2013-09-24. 
  19. ^ "Special Board Meeting April 30, 2012 - Subject: Light Rail Vehicle Procurement" (PDF). LAMetroLogo.svg Metro (LACMTA). April 30, 2012. Retrieved 2014-04-20. 

External links[edit]