Metro is looking for community input regarding the Crenshaw Line extension
The Crenshaw Line will connect the Expo Line to LAX once it opens next year. But riders are already making their feelings known that they need to go further north. Metro has heard these requests and is exploring five possible options to extend the Crenshaw Line to connect with the Red Line.
The five potential extensions that Metro is exploring will go down one of these major corridors: a) San Vicente, b) La Cienega, c) Fairfax, d) La Brea, or e) Vermont. Each option has its pros and cons in terms of cost, travel time, and whether it would be elevated or at-grade. For example, Fairfax is only about 55-feet wide and would need to have an elevated track. But La Cienega is wide enough to accommodate an at-grade rail line.
The first three miles alone of the northern extension which will connect to the Purple Line is expected to more than double the ridership of the Crenshaw Line. The projected boardings per day with the extension is 77,700 for the Vermont extension but could be as high as 90,800 for the San Vicente or La Cienega extensions. The study area for the extension includes 20,000 residents per square mile and 11,000 jobs per square mile. The extension will connect four rail lines and five out of 10 of LA’s busiest bus lines.
Metro stated at the Koreatown Community Meeting that the part of Los Angeles that would be served by the Crenshaw Line extension already has high transit ridership compared to the rest of the city. I asked Metro representatives if they’re considering constructing longer platforms on the Crenshaw Line considering the community already shows a high affinity toward public transportation. After all, the opening of the Gold and Expo line extensions a few years back proved that Metro’s projections were much lower than the demand, and people stopped commuting by those lines into DTLA because they were way too packed. I was disappointed to learn that Metro still intends to construct these stations to accommodate three-car trains.
I still haven’t decided which option I prefer for the Crenshaw Line extension. For my own selfish reasons, I like the Fairfax option. It goes closest to parts of the city I frequent, like the Farmers Market and Canter’s Deli. But from what I learned at the Community Meeting, the San Vicente or La Cienega options would better serve the community by connecting more homes and jobs. That would result in fewer cars on LA’s roads. Ultimately, that’s what is important to me.
The final community meeting regarding the Crenshaw Northern Extension is March 28th from 6-8pm at the West Hollywood Library, located at 625 N San Vicente Blvd.