March 23, 2012

L.A. Metro to open new Expo light rail line in April

Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Antonio Villaraigosa (second from right) announced the opening day for Metro's Expo light rail line during a test train ride held Friday. Photo credit Metro/Gary Leonard.

Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Antonio Villaraigosa (second from right) announced the opening day for Metro's Expo light rail line during a test train ride held Friday. Photo credit Metro/Gary Leonard.
Los Angeles Metro officials announced that the agency's new Expo light rail line between downtown Los Angeles and Culver City is scheduled to open to the public on April 28.

The announcement was made by Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Antonio Villaraigosa during a Metro Expo test train ride held Friday.

Opening to the public in April will be the segment from downtown Los Angeles to the Expo/La Cienega Station. Construction work continues on the Culver City station, which is expected to open later this summer.

“The opening of Expo line Phases I is a critical step toward creating the multifaceted transit network that Angelenos deserve,” said Mayor Villaraigosa.

Poised to start regular revenue service to the public in late April, Metro will begin full pre-revenue expanded operation of test trains along the Metro Expo Line corridor beginning March 25, running trains from 4:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m., seven days a week, on a schedule of approximately every 12 minutes to simulate regular service on the line once the system opens to the public on April 28.

“Metro is excited about opening the new Metro Expo light rail line, the first time the traffic choked Westside will see rail passenger service in half a century,” said Metro CEO Art Leahy.

For the last month, test trains had been operating along the alignment from approximately 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. The additional train testing is needed in an effort to test the operation of the trains and the integration of Expo Line service with Metro Blue Line service in downtown Los Angeles.

As part of Metro’s rail safety awareness program, rail safety ambassadors have been placed at various intersections along the Metro Expo Line during the testing of trains to educate the public about the service and how to safely navigate around the system. Additionally, Metro community relations staff continues to offer safety presentations to various groups and organizations within the community.

Photo credit Metro/Gary Leonard.

Photo credit Metro/Gary Leonard.
Phase I of the Metro Expo Line is a new $932 million, 8.6-mile light rail line under construction from downtown Los Angeles to Culver City. It will have 12 stations with two stations shared with the Metro Blue Line. The new light rail line will serve USC, Exposition Park, The Mid-City communities, the Crenshaw District and Culver City.

Phase II of the Metro Expo Line, a $1.5 billion 6.6-mile extension from Culver City to Santa Monica, is funded under the Measure R half-cent sale tax initiative approved by the voters in 2008. Phase II will have seven stations serving West Los Angeles/Santa Monica and is expected to be completed in 2016.

Both Phase I and II of the Metro Expo Line are being built by the Expo Construction Authority. Once completed, they are turned over to Metro to operate. For more information about the new Metro Expo Line, visit metro.net/expo or buildexpo.org.

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