Metro Reaching Out to Communities on Possible Green Line Extenstion to Torrance


Starting last night and continuing tomorrow, Metro began a series of outreach meetings for the "scoping" of the potential Green Line Extension to Torrance. Before we get into the details of the study, let’s put down some basics on the project. No, this is not a competing project with the Green Line extension to LAX. Yes, this is a Measure R and "30/10" project, with $272 million in Measure R dollars already set aside for the project.

While Metro already identified a preferred alternative for the Green Line Extension, extending the current Green Line light rail along the route to Torrance that appears on the right was selected as the "Locally Preferred Alternative" in the Alternatives Analysis (AA) study; the meetings that are currently underway are a chance for the public to help Metro identify the issues and concerns that need to be examined throughout the environmental process. Metro also has to weigh other alternatives to the preferred one, which include a "no build" option, an option of improving the streets instead of the rail, and using an abandoned freight right-of-way and new tracks to get from LAX/El Segundo down to Torrance.

The goal of the extension is to provide an alternative to driving on the I-405 in this area. The proposed alignment to Torrance seems a good alternative, as it runs parallel to the I-405. The extension isn’t just to provide access to the Green Line, but by the time construction is underway it will be easy to connect the Green Line to the completed Expo Line and provide access from Torrance all the way to Downtown Santa Monica or Los Angeles. For transportation planners that have been waiting for decades for a truly connected rail system for L.A. County, this is an exciting step.

So what issues might arise during the scoping and planning for this project? While there’s no entrenched opposition to the extension, there are always some areas that are ripe for debate. Fore example. the current design calls for a train similar to the North County Transit District’s Sprinter trains, which might have trouble ingegrating with the existing Green Line Service.

Both The Source and Daily Breeze have written articles on the hearings. Feel free to check them out, or for more information on the meetings, read on after the jump.

  • Wednesday, April 28, 2010 (6-8 p.m.) North Redondo Senior Center, Perry Park, 2308 Rockefeller Lane, Redondo Beach.
  • Saturday, May 1, 2010 (10 a.m. – 12n) Lawndale City Hall, 14717 Burin Avenue, Lawndale.
  • Wednesday, May 5, 2010 (6-8 p.m.) Automobile Driving Museum, 610 Lairport Street, El Segundo.
  • The one big issue I have with the way Metro is handling the Green line extension study is that it is done in isolation with Crenshaw and Harbor Subdivision when in reality, we are really talking about one single system. Metro needs to stop doing these studies one line at a time and really address this as one big Southbay-Westside transit options.

    For example:

    1. LAX station would naturally be a major transfer point in the future when the lines are completed (Green line: Norwalk to LAX; Crenshaw line: Torrence to Expo line) so station location will be critical. The two lines will cross at or near LAX station. There may yet still be a 3rd and 4th line in the mix (Harbor Subdivision from Union St to LAX; and 405 line from SFV to LAX). All these planning and studies should be combined into one analysis. This way we don’t end up with another “gap” problem like in Downtown LA that will need to be address later (with the regional connector project).

    2. If Green line is extended to LAX, it sets up the line to eventually go further north towards Venice or Santa Monica. This may impact ridership on the Crenshaw/Torrence line as transfers needs to be projected properly. And similarly, if the current Green line to El Segundo (which will likely become part of Crenshwa line) is extended to Torrence, it will have major impact on transfers at Expo/Crenshaw. These things needs to be looked at together, not studied piecemeal.

  • James Fujita

    I would love to see a Green Line extension on the Harbor Sub, or a Crenshaw Line extension, if you prefer.

    At the same time, I think it would be wonderful to have any sort of passenger rail service in the South Bay.

    I’ve seen how the South Bay has evolved from being just totally NIMBY to being much more open to the idea of rail — at the very least, the area’s political leaders know which way the wind blows and they want to get on the train before it passes them by!

    Light rail might be the best way to go, but I suspect that there’s room for more than one rail line in the South Bay — or perhaps room for both local and express trains on the same line?
    The Harbor Sub DMU might be worth taking a look at. I would not be opposed to getting an inexpensive DMU service up and running quickly on the existing tracks from Torrance to LAX to downtown L.A.
    In the future, we would still be able to upgrade to light rail.

  • Carter R


    I think your point is a really salient and important one. I think too much effort is put on just getting more tracks laid down, and not enough on how the whole system will look once it reaches a critical mass – emphasizing the most important trips and streamlining trips across the system.

    Fundamentally, the person traveling from East LA to LAX or the San Fernando Valley to LAX should be able to do with the minimum number of hassles and transfers.

  • Carter

    Yes, that is exactly my point but you put it in a much succinct way.


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