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Metro's new Gold Line now in business

November 16, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
The commute gets easier for thousands of people in L.A. County, as Metro's new Gold Line extension is now in business.The new six-mile route is expected to carry some 13,000 commuters every day. The extension runs from Atlantic Boulevard in East Los Angeles to Union Station in downtown L.A., where it now connects to the rest of the line all the way to Pasadena.

"This is the most transit-dependent community in L.A. County. It will give them access to jobs, schools, medical care and other opportunities," said MTA spokesperson Marc Littman. "There's going to be development here, there's going to be housing and business opportunities."

For $1.25, the train will take you from East L.A. to downtown L.A. in about 17 minutes. The eastside extension of the Gold Line will run every 8 minutes during the morning commute, then every 12 minutes during the day.

Yazmin Garcia and her mother took the new eastside extension from Highland Park all the way to Boyle Heights. Before the extension, they had to transfer to a bus downtown.

"It would take about 15 minutes, and then from the bus, it'll take like 45 minutes more, so this really cuts back on, I'd probably say like 20 to 30 minutes," Garcia said.

There are eight new stops along six miles of track, and two of them are underground. The nearly $900 million project took about five years to build and was many years in the planning.

Above ground, the trains will travel up to 35 mph, but the 1.7 miles of underground track allows the trains to travel up to 55 mph.

Traffic enforcement will direct pedestrians around crossings as an added safety measure.

Metro believes ridership will increase as more people hear about the six new miles of the Gold Line.


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