Small Improvements: Metro Buses Announce Stops Served by Rail Lines

When riding to Wishire/Western, buses now announce the rail station. Photo: GTD Aquatine/Wikipedia

This past Sunday I was out and about, riding Metro’s line 20 westbound on Wilshire from the Westlake/MacArthur Park District and was startled as we approached Wilshire/Vermont that besides the usual verbal announcement for the stop a different deep bass voice interrupted to state “Connection to the Red and Purple Lines”. Continuing on at Normandie and also Western the same voice announced “Connection to the Purple Line”

This was the day service changes went into effect and I remembered Metro has said one of the key themes it is working to implement is connectivity and a focus on customer service as per the FY13 budget parameters

I was curious if this is isolated to the Wilshire District or includes the entire Metro Rail System and the Orange Line. Bruce Shelburne, Interim Executive Director for Rail Operations at Metro, in response to a query,informs me: “As part of the new system schedule changes, modifications are being made to the bus stop announcements to provide rail connections at the appropriate locations. Some of the bus stop locations do not necessarily match the names of the stations. Hopefully, this will help our passengers. This is system-wide for the rail stations. The Orange Line was not included for the June changes, but will be when the December changes go into effect.”

Shelburne credits Stephen Tu, a Transportation Planner in Operations Service Planning & Scheduling, as the driving force behind this change. Tu in turn credit’s Al Martinez (Supervising Engineer, Operations) and Martinez’s Advanced Transportation Management System staff for making all of the Automatic Voice Annunciator modifications that made this possible.

It was a good idea and Metro deserves some kudos for doing it.

  • Juan Matute

    They also seem to be using the full spectrum of colors available on LED headsigns, with different palates for rapid versus local service.

    Stephen Tu is great – he works tirelessly on the twitter service alerts and other “special projects” in addition to his regular duties.

  • Erik T

    I was passing by the Expo line, Culver City Station, on the 33 and it announced the Expo line.

  • I heard the rail connections announcement in that “deep voice” as well yesterday while riding the bus along Broadway in Downtown LA.

  • 720purpleredrider

    Yeah, the announcement is good information… but doesn’t the sound of that voice make you wish they just didn’t?  The recording is of some slow, deep, lugubrious male voice that makes you think Eeyore is considering using the rails with the same enthusiasm as Beverly Hills….
    Dearest Metro: YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG

  • PC

    That is one hell of a voice. I’m on the 450 right now and it just made me snap my head…”Connection to the Expooooo Liiiiiiiine.”

    Took me right back to the haunted mansion at Disneyland. “This room has no windows…and NOOO DOOOORS!”

  • PC

    …good god, you guys have got to jump on a bus near 7th and Fig just to hear it call out the connection to the “Red…..Blue……and Puuurple Liiiiiiiiiiine.”

  • Quietsistr

    The voice is something else. It got my attention. A little boy said, too loud. The mother shushed him. It’s Something to get use too.

  • Anonymous

    Will getting rid of Transit TV be next?  If it only brings in $100K per year…

  • Joe B

    Yeah, TransitTV pretty much makes it impossible to read or get anything done on long bus trips. I don’t have to ride the bus; I have options (bike or car). Listening to TransitTV for an hour and a half on the 333 last Friday made me never want to board a bus again.

    Is there some kind of organized campaign to at least get the sound turned off? If not, can we start one?

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