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Commuters Avoid I-405, Metro Plans Westside-Valley Tunnel

The Metro long-range transportation plan includes rapid transit between the Westside and the Valley, including a possible northern leg of the Wilshire Boulevard subway via a tunnel under Sepulveda Pass.

The opening of the new Expo Line between Culver City and downtown Los Angeles is having an unexpected consequence far away, in the San Fernando Valley, it was reported on Sunday.

The Los Angeles Daily News reports that the new east-west light rail line is attracting noticeable numbers of north-south commuters.

San Fernando Valley residents are taking the 12-year-old Red Line into downtown L.A., then walking up a flight of stairs to transfer to the new Expo Line to get to work. The Daily News reports Valley residents are using rail to bypass the construction-clogged Sepulveda Pass route from the Valley to the Westside.

Although Metro officials do not know exactly how many Valley residents are doing that, the Daily News reporter found Valley residents on 11 of the 12 Expo Line cars he surveyed last week. Light rail ridership on the Expo Line has already grown to 14,000 per day, while the Red Line subway from North Hollywood through Hollywood and Koreatown to the Civic Center carries about 179,000 riders daily.

Some commuters are enduring 90-minute trips on several bus lines and both the Expo and Red lines to avoid the 405, the Daily News discovered. The Metro long-range transportation plan includes rapid transit between the Westside and the Valley, including a possible northern leg of the Wilshire Boulevard subway via a tunnel under Sepulveda Pass.

A feasibility study on that proposal is due this fall.

Joe July 17, 2012 at 04:18 PM
I read this same article yesterday almost word for word. Nice copy & paste job!
Alan Fishel July 17, 2012 at 08:08 PM
Not only is a “tunnel” needed from Van Nuys to Westwood a heavy rail line is urgently needed from the Sylmar Station on Metrolink via Van Nuys Blvd to the Westside with a connection with the Wilshire Purple Line Subway at Century City or Westwood and the Expo Line but it needs to go all the way to LAX where not only it brings riders to the airport but to connections with the Green and Crenshaw Lines along with proposed extensions and many bus lines that it will connect with at the airport transit center. This could also serve for a fast connection for HSR riders who need to get toe LAX instead of downtown.
Jared Morgan July 17, 2012 at 08:58 PM
Joe, Thanks for the keen observation. This was a wire service story from City News Service. It's pretty standard for news organizations to "copy & paste" them, which is why you read the same story somewhere else. I'm sure you've seen the "Associated Press" byline all over the place too.
Jared Morgan July 17, 2012 at 09:00 PM
Alan, though I'd never use a Van Nuys-Westwood tunnel, I think it'd probably do great things to get people off of the 405, which I do use from time to time.
K. Udall August 22, 2012 at 03:43 PM
I need somebody to explain to me why we are using tunnels for the Metro lines. We are in great need of rapid transit in this city and this article proves people use what we already have but why dig a hole when we could be putting a mono-rail down the 405 and other frwys. right now. In fact we could be putting in the route you are talking about now while they do the expansion of the 405...right down the middle. The need for parking would be the same. Put the cars underground but tunneling under the Sepulveda Pass? Why? I think the the decision to put in a subway was made during Bradley's administration. I also remember something about pay-offs. Someone please explain.

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