MTA: Expo Line To Open On Nov. 15

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Fri, Mar 11, 2011 at 11:53 AM

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After years of delays and cost overruns, the Expo Line is finally scheduled to open on Nov. 15, according to an MTA budget document. (H/T Streetsblog.)

When it opens, L.A.'s newest light-rail line will be the first rail link to the Westside since the Pacific Electric shut down 50 years ago.

Expo officials have been wary of giving a firm opening date, and it seems like it could still change. (Update below: MTA is calling this a "target date," not an "official date.")

If that date does hold up, the line will be 16 months late. It's also $290 million over budget.

Gabriela Collins, Expo's spokeswoman, could not confirm the date and referred calls to the MTA.

Marc Littman, an MTA spokesman, said that Nov. 15 is a "target date," but that doesn't guarantee that that's when the line will open.

"They've got to go through all sorts of train testing," Littman said.

An "official" opening date may not be announced for months, he said.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is using that date to estimate its operating expenses for the next fiscal year.

When it's finished, the Expo Line will run from downtown L.A. to Culver City.

It's still unclear just how far the line will go when opens. The Culver City aerial station, at Venice and Robertson boulevards, won't be completed by November.

It seems most likely that the line will go to La Cienega Boulevard, which is about a mile short of the final destination. The full line will likely open in early 2012.

Phase 2, which will extend the line to Santa Monica, is currently scheduled to open in 2015. The Expo Construction Authority is expected to award a contract for Phase 2 next week.

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