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Blue Line Upgrades

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Major improvements for Metro’s oldest and most heavily used line.

After 23 years of service transporting riders between Long Beach and Downtown Los Angeles, the Metro Blue Line is getting a well-deserved $1.2 billion dollar overhaul. It includes new tracks, improved stations, refurbished rail cars and more. Many of these updates have already begun and some have even been completed. In all cases, work is being arranged during the six-year program to minimize customer inconveniences. 

Among the upgrades are:

Safety

  • Camera and video enhancements
  • New safety signage at pedestrian crossings
  • Additional law enforcement and security personnel.

Track and Cars

  • Refurbish 52 rail cars
  • Purchase 78 new rail cars
  • Track replacement as needed

Stations rehabilitation 

  • New canopies
  • New signage
  • New, more durable paint

Blue Line Map and Station Locations

Visit the Metro Facts at a Glance page for more Blue Line information.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Metro Blue Line?

The Metro Blue Line is the oldest light rail line in Los Angeles County opening on July 14, 1990. It connects Downtown Los Angeles and Downtown Long Beach along a 22-mile, 22-station corridor that includes South Los Angeles, Watts, Willowbrook and the City of Compton.

How many people use the Blue Line?

When the Blue Line first opened it accounted for an average of about 19,000 weekday boardings. Now, there are about 88,000 average weekday boardings. It is estimated that Fiscal Year 2014 will account for upwards of 28 million boardings.

What is the Blue Line’s reliability record?

For FY2013, the Blue Line had a 95.8 percent in service, on time performance record.

When does the work begin?

In some cases it already has. Since FY2007, $260 million has been spent upgrading pedestrian swing/crossing gates, there have been improvements to active warning signage, pedestrian markings, In-Roadway Warning lights, and grade crossing lighting upgrades. In addition, 19 of 20 Traction Power Substations have been replaced to improve reliability. Major work will begin in 2014 but the exact dates are not yet known because the construction contracts have not been finalized.

Will there be service disruptions?

When work begins there will be periods of service interruptions. Metro will minimize any disruptions by conducting work during off-peak hours, nights and weekends. When necessary, bus shuttles will be used to bridge gaps caused by construction activity.

How long will construction last?

Work is scheduled to be completed by FY2019.

Will there be upgrades at Blue Line station?

Painting crews are already sprucing up Blue Line station platforms and canopies with epoxy paint, which is more durable than the paint used previously. Lighting is being replaced and new message boards are being installed with LCD displays to improve customer information.

Will tracks be replaced?

Corroded tracks from Willow to Downtown Long Beach are being replaced. Improved insulation will be used to reduce future corrosion caused by moist sea air.

Will overhead power lines be upgraded?

Overhead power lines, called Catenary Lines, will be replaced in the downtown Los Angeles and downtown Long Beach areas.

How about train cars?

Upgrading is scheduled for 52 light rail cars currently in service. Some will receive a new coat of paint, new decals and a new interior, while others will be stripped down to the chassis and be completely rebuilt. Metro also will purchase 78 new light rail cars.

Will this mean that there service will be more frequent?

The Blue Line is one of the most heavily used light rail lines in the United States. Upgraded rail vehicles along with the purchase of new train cars will allow Metro to have more frequent service.

Why is all this necessary?

The Metro Blue Line is a major investment in mobility for the region and it must be maintained in top running order. The Blue Line is almost 24 years old and needs a large investment to keep up with its demanding pace.


Start Date Notice Brief More Info
6/9 - 6/20 As part of Metro’s continuing effort to upgrade and refurbish the Blue Line, a test demonstration of work on the rail tracks will commence on the tail track just north of 8th and Pacific, in the downtown Long Beach area for period of 2 weeks. PDF
Advisories
5/10 - 5/11 As part of Metro’s continuing effort in upgrading the Blue Line, installation of rail plugs will be done in the area south of Vernon Station on the bridge before Slauson Station. Weather permitting, this work will be done starting Saturday, May 10th, from 9 PM until Sunday, May 11th, ending at 430 AM. PDF
Advisories
04/17/14
1AM until 4AM
Metro, the Los Angeles Fire Department and the Los Angeles Police Department will be conducting a response exercise simulating a train fire. Weather permitting, this exercise will begin on April 17th, during the hours of 1pm to 4pm, in the areas surrounding 7th/Flower St, 9th/Flower St, and Pico Blvd/Flower. PDF
Advisories
3/27-3/28 Attention community: Metro will be installing new equipment between Florence Av to Nadeau St on the Blue Line tracks. You may hear noise from hammering, grinding and tamping of the tracks. PDF
Advisories
02/23 - 03/02, 2014 Weather permitting, work in this area will start from Sunday, February 23rd , until Thursday, February, February 27th , starting at 9PM until 5AM. They will return to complete the work on Sunday, March 2nd , until Thursday, March 6 th , starting at 9PM until 5AM. The city of Long Beach is aware of the upcoming construction work. PDF
Advisories

Blue Line Rail Advisories | En español



Showing the latest posts relating to: Blue-Line

Service Advisory: Blue Line to run every 40 min between DTLA-Willowbrook, Wednesday night after 8 p.m.
Posted by Lily Allen on July 22, 2014 6:01 pm
This Wednesday night after 8 p.m., the Metro Blue Line will run every 40 minutes between 7th Street/Metro Center and Willowbrook Station due to essential track maintenance that is part of the ongoing ...
Transportation headlines, Tuesday, July 22
Posted by Steve Hymon on July 22, 2014 12:10 pm
Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Pick your social media ...
Go Metro to the BET Experience and save on concert tickets!
Posted by Jon Ross Alexander on June 23, 2014 12:50 pm
Go Metro to the BET Experience, a three-day music festival featuring concerts, performing artist appearances at a free fan expo and more at L.A. LIVE in downtown Los Angeles from June 27 to 29. ...
Transportation headlines, Monday, June 23
Posted by Steve Hymon on June 23, 2014 10:40 am
Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Pick your social media ...
Go Metro to the Los Angeles Kings’ SECOND Stanley Cup victory parade
Posted by Steve Hymon on June 13, 2014 11:10 pm
Congratulations to the Los Angeles Kings, which won the Stanley Cup Friday night with a heart-stopping and breath-taking double-overtime win over the New York Rangers. A victory parade will begin ...
Service Advisory: Blue Line to run every 40 minutes between DTLA-Willowbrook tomorrow night
Posted by Lily Allen on June 11, 2014 3:00 pm
On Thursday night after 8:30 p.m., the Metro Blue Line will again run every 40 minutes between 7th Street/Metro Center and Willowbrook Station due to essential track maintenance that is part of the ...
A Better Blue Line: test demonstration of track work in downtown Long Beach to start June 9
Posted by Anna Chen on June 6, 2014 3:14 pm
Fresh out of the paint shop, this rail car is refurbished inside and out. Next stop: components overhaul or replacement. As part of the ongoing work to upgrade and refurbish the Blue Line, a test ...
Blue Line Farmers’ Market now every Thursday
Posted by Lily Allen on May 22, 2014 8:01 am
Click to view slideshow. Just a heads up, the Blue Line Farmers’ Market has moved from Wednesdays to Thursdays! It still operates from 3 to 7 p.m., rain or shine, in the MLK Transit Center ...
A Better Blue Line: trains to run every 20 minutes between DTLA and Long Beach after 7 p.m. this Friday
Posted by Lily Allen on May 21, 2014 2:04 pm
A Metro Blue Line train at Pico Station. Photo by Andrew Hart via Flickr Creative Commons. Due to track improvement work, Blue Line trains will run every 20 minutes between downtown Los Angeles and ...
Transportation headlines, Friday, May 16
Posted by Steve Hymon on May 16, 2014 10:04 am
Have a transportation-related article you think should be included in headlines? Drop me an email! And don’t forget, Metro is on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Pick your social media ...

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