Thursday, March 15, 2012

LACMTA expands additional train testing on new Expo Line

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Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority will expand the operation of test trains along the LACMTA Expo Line corridor beginning Sunday, March 18, running trains from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m., seven days a week, on a schedule of every 12 minutes to simulate regular service on the line once the system opens in early 2012.

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 the Blue Line service in downtown Los Angeles. No date has been set for the opening of the line. LACMTA will select an opening date for the public once all systems and trains are thoroughly tested and operated.

Due to the increased frequency of trains traveling along the entire Expo Line corridor, LACMTA is reminding the public to be alert and stay updated on rail safety tips.

As part of the rail safety awareness program, rail safety ambassadors have been placed at various intersections along the Expo Line during the testing of trains to educate the public about the service and how to safely navigate around the system. The rail safety ambassadors are all retired LACMTA bus and rail operators that are fully trained in safety rules and regulations so they can assist at crossings, observe situations that may occur and report back to staff.

Phase I of the 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 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 2015.

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.

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