Between its light rail and heavy rail systems, Los Angeles Metro Rail has 73 miles (117 km) of rail, averaging 308,653 trips per weekday, and accounting for approximately 1.1% of the 29 million daily trips originating in Los Angeles County. The network includes three above-ground light rail lines (Gold Line, Blue Line, and Green Line) and one underground subway with two branches (Red Line and Purple Line).
Ranked by daily ridership, the Los Angeles subway ranked as the ninth-busiest rapid transit system in the United States. Ranked by passengers per route mile, however, the system ranks sixth, transporting 8,846 passengers per route mile, more than San Francisco’s Bay Area Rapid Transit or the Chicago ‘L’.
The Los Angeles Metro Rail system connects disperse areas of the county including Long Beach, Pasadena, Norwalk, El Segundo, North Hollywood and Downtown Los Angeles. The Expo Line’s first phase from Downtown Los Angeles to Culver City is set to open in late 2011. In June 2010, construction extending the Gold Line from Pasadena to Azusa is expected to begin. Construction on the Expo Line’s extension to Santa Monica is also expected to start later this year. There are several additional rail expansion projects currently under study. The timing of their construction will depend on the availability of funding. These projects include:
- New light rail line through the Crenshaw Corridor
- Further extensions of the Gold Line from Azusa to Ontario and East Los Angeles to Whittier
- Connection of the Green Line or Crenshaw Corridor line to LAX.
- Regional Connector in Downtown Los Angeles, connecting the Gold, Blue, and Expo lines.
- Westward extension of the Purple Line subway to Santa Monica and possible connection to the Red Line through West Hollywood and Beverly Hills
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