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Metro to beef up mass transit for Carmageddon

July 6, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
When the I-405 shuts down from the 10 to the 101 freeways the weekend of July 16 and the traffic backs up, Los Angeles County transportation officials are hoping its Metro bus and rail system will be the road map to success.

Metro is adding a slew of extra vehicles on Carmageddon weekend at a price that's hard to beat: free.

"Metro is offering the public free rides on the Metro Red Line and Purple Line and that's really an effort to get people to try transit and to avoid driving during the weekend of the closure," said Dave Sotero of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

The free rides and extra services begin in the San Fernando Valley, where riders can park for free when they hop on the Orange Line. That will take them over to North Hollywood and its Red Line subway - also free - which then connects to the Purple Line subway. That will take riders to the Wilshire Boulevard and Western Avenue station in Koreatown, and at that point they can take Metro bus lines on key routes in L.A. to get to the Westside for free.

See a live cam shot of the Mulholland Bridge construction site.

Even residents in outlying areas who have to make it into the city are getting some help on Carmageddon weekend.

Metrolink says it's adding service on its Antelope Valley and Ventura County lines, and offering a financial incentive as well.

"We're also offering a $10 weekend pass where you can ride unlimited Metrolink trains and it also is good for connections on bus and rail throughout the region as well," said Metrolink spokeswoman Sherita Coffelt.

Metrolinks says it's offering the $10 weekend pass permanently now. But is it enough to get Southern Californians out of their cars and onto trains and buses?

"I participate in mass transportation. I ride the bus in and the light rail every day," Los Angeles resident Stephanie Hall said.

"I've been on the bus, I've been on the train. I think the challenge is it doesn't take you everywhere you need to go," said Michele Siqueiros of Los Angeles.

Beat Carmageddon with ABC7

The 405 shuts down the weekend of July 16-17, and ABC7 Eyewitness News is your home for the latest traffic news and information. Follow @abc7 and @BeatCarmageddon on Twitter, and use the hash tag #abc7traffic.

ABC7 has also partnered with Waze to help navigate the traffic. Download the Waze app, which provides free turn-by-turn GPS navigation based on the live conditions of the road. Join the community of drivers in Southern California today and beat Carmageddon.

Check out the latest Carmageddon coverage from abc7.com


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