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This homepage was developed by a Metro Bus and Rail rider dwelling within the city of Los Angeles. It is NOT the official web site for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. There is no information available here that you cannot already find out from their web site. If you want official information regarding the company, fare, schedule and/or any publicly released information, go to http://www.mta.net/ right now!

Welcome to my Metro Pages

This web page was published to disiminate some of my knowledge regarding one of the largest, most organized, reliable, safe and on time bus and rail transit organizations in the United States of America operating today. Sure, MTA will have problems as seen in countless L.A. Times stories as well as updates heard on such newsradio stations as KNX 10.70 Newsradio. However, any organization that can be on time at least half of the time while driving over 1.1 Million passengers daily (slightly less than one third the entire population of the city of Los Angeles), MTA is better than most give it credit for.

If you'd like to skip to the trivia information I've provided about Metro Busses, go to the Main Menu.

Riding busses is usually not fun. And most people do it out of necessity (unable to afford a car, car undergoing repairs) and not in the spirit of decongesting traffic or reducing the polution that colors our air shades of unique brown. However, there are some reasons why a few people still ride the bus despite owning or having access to an automobile:

And then some. Good examples of all of these in action are going to work, the mall, school, beach or just about anything else NOT involving hauling massive cargo (ie., shopping).

However, as I mentioned before, bus riding isn't fun. And here are some of the problems that I and my have encountered:

And so on. Some of these are the unavoidable problems of attempting to operate a public service one of the busiest cities in the world. And others are the fault of mismanagement within the MTA. Operators have striked and threatened to strike on multiple occasions while the Bus Riders union had called for a boycott called, 'No Seat, No Fare' in which passengers will not pay if more than a dozen passengers are standing.

All these as well as investigations and demands made by the city, state and even federal governments are clear indications that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority seriously needs help. However, it jumped head first into this mess by starting off with funding go-nowhere projects.

The Red Line is perhaps the biggest of all disasters with Hollywood residence and small businesspeople suffering from the non-stop construction in the region. Even from the very start, the day before the Metro Blue line was to open in July, 1990--there was a multi-thousand degree fire during the construction of the Red Line.

However, the worst part of it all is the fact that it is the most expensive transit project the agency has ever embarked on and continues to be the least used service the agency has ever offered. To this day, busses are still, and obviously, the single most used form of public transportation in the city of Los Angeles. And the busses that currently operate in the city are anywhere from a year to over ten years old. Two manufacturers that the, then Rapid Transit District (RTD) bought busses from are actually no longer in business (Flxible and TMC from Rosewell, New Mexico). Both companies have gone belly up so Metro buys loud, ugly and uncomfortable Neoplan busses fueled by CNG.

However, in the Summer of 1996; one of the busses exploded during refueling and all CNG busses were taken off the fleet, causing problems for serving schedules on time. And although no official explanation has ever been provided, it has been said that it was probably caused by debris striking the fuel line or tank and, during re-fueling, it blew a hole in the floor and shattered every window on the $360,000 bus. The German company Neoplan had agreed to provide the transit agency with fuel tank shield liners free of charge due to the incident.

Meanwhile, Denver's RTD has a heart-attack when they don't realize their Neoplan busses had a steering columns that were vulnerable to fracture until they read about it first in a Business Journal.

I have been told Metro is buying low-floor busses from Neoplan. I can only hope they aren't as bad as Santa Monica Municiple 'Big Blue Bus' New Flyer lower-floor busses. The Canadian company New Flyer had nicer CNG busses than Neoplan but Culver City operators are dreading when they receive them in the Summer of 1998. It is their information that they fishtail when it rains. (The act of a bus's rear wheels skidding from side to side during turns.)

Busses were built better the farther back in time you go. The original fishbowl GMC busses constructed in the late 1960s were owned by Metro and Culver City Bus at one time (Santa Monica still seems to operate a number of them) and they have been running perfectly as recently as 1998. However, the new Neoplan busses in MTA's fleet seem to suffer breakdowns from time to time and I doubt we'll ever see the one that exploded again. [end]


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Trivia, Fun Facts and other information you CANNOT find at Metro's Web Site. Like most passengers, I do not have a problem with the agency nor am I a loyal fan (not even their drivers are too fond of the company so who could be?). Because of this, I have a pretty unbiased view of what goes on and I typically get along with any driver who isn't a complete idiot or a nasty jerk. Most passengers are hardly this impartial and pretty much would be your least reliable source of 'Pretty Accurate' Info.

 Metro Bus Lines (L.A. County)

 Metro Blue Line (Downtown - Long Beach)

 Metro Red Line (Union Station - Wilshire/Western)

 Metro Green Line (Redondo Beach - Norwalk)

Questions? Comments? Write to . Bus lines I normally take are: 40, 42, 206, 207/357, 105 and 204/354. This does not include routes beyond my first transfer point. All of these lines are closest to where I begin my outbound trip or end my inbound trip.

Last Updated: August 28, 1998


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