Phase 1 of Los Angeles' newest metro line had its public opening this morning, connecting Downtown LA with Culver City, hitting USC and Expo Park along the way, along with some culturally significant South LA neighborhoods like Crenshaw.
It was really cool to see so many people out riding the train. There seems to be genuine enthusiasm about the new line, and every train was packed.
LA has been expanding their metro system for awhile, but this line marks the beginning of a new era, as it extends rail into the LA's Westside for the first time since the Pacific Electric streetcar tracks were ripped out in the 1940's. The wealthier Westside has been resistant to mass transit efforts in the past and has some of LA's most congested streets.
In 2016, phase 2 of the Expo line will be completed, taking the line all the way to Santa Monica, a few blocks from the beach. This should be an even larger turning point in Los Angeles' mass transit story, and will make the city feel like a much smaller place.
For now though, I'm quite happy to see Expo Phase I open, and plan on using it to get to my meetings at USC, to visit the California Science Center, and to explore some bars, restaurants, and galleries in Culver City. Enjoy the photos!