Photos: Extending the Expo Line

Written by

Expo Line Phase 2 construction at the corner of Venice Boulevard and Robertson. Here crews have just started building an Expo Line bridge that will span Venice Boulevard. Construction is expected to take 9 months.During that time, expect road closures and traffic delays.

If you regularly drive through Culver City, West Los Angeles and Santa Monica, you’ve probably seen all of the construction happening for what’s formally known as the Exposition Transit Corridor, Phase 2. That’s the extension of of the current Expo Line between downtown Culver City and downtown Santa Monica. When it’s completed in 2015 (although that could slide into 2016), this $1.5 billion extension will make a long-time transportation dream come true, a passenger light rail line connecting downtown L.A. and Santa Monica. It’s hoped such a line will do everything from relieving traffic on the notoriously-gridlocked Santa Monica 10 Freeway to giving diverse neighborhoods along the route a common sense of civic identity.

The Expo Line extension now being built runs 6.6 miles from downtown Culver City to downtown Santa Monica, ending on the corner of 4th Street and Colorado Avenue. When it opens in 2016, the extension will be serviced by seven new stations along the route serving what Metro says will be an estimated 64,000 passengers.

But that’s in the future. Right now, the building of the Expo Line extension means noise, road closures, and construction-related congestion, and all of this will last months. That knowledge is probably just starting to sink in with many residents, businesses and commuters on the Westside, people who have already battle-scarred from construction along the 405 Freeway.

Expo-2---Project-map-color-Master-032410
When completed, the Expo Line will run between 7th and Figueroa in downtown L.A. and 4th and Colorado Avenue in downtown Santa Monica.
This is the not so beautiful looking western terminus of the Expo Line's Phase 1 in Culver City. This is also the start point for the construction of Phase 2, which will run from Culver City to Santa Monica.
The western terminus of the Expo Line’s Phase 1 in Culver City. This is also the start point for the construction of Phase 2, which will run from Culver City to Santa Monica.
Expo Line construction isn't only in commercial neighborhoods. It is also running through residential districts, like this neighborhood in West L.A. near Overland.
Expo Line construction isn’t only in commercial neighborhoods. It is also running through residential districts, like this neighborhood in West L.A. near Overland.
Construction of the Expo Line follows the old right of way for the Pacific Electric Exposition, the old passenger rail route between L.A. and Santa Monica that was ripped out decades ago. Talk about reinventing the wheel.
Construction of the Expo Line follows the old right of way for the Pacific Electric Exposition, the old passenger rail route between L.A. and Santa Monica that was ripped out decades ago. Talk about reinventing the wheel.