On Sunday, June 28, a routine realignment of the Metro bus system will take effect, cutting 25,000 revenue service hours out of 7.3 million per year.
Routes that serve Santa Monica will not experience disproportionate changes. Some trips along the 704 line, a Metro Rapid route between Los Angeles and Santa Monica via Santa Monica Boulevard, will terminate at Sepulveda Boulevard. Service to and from Second Street will be reduced.
The 920 line between Santa Monica and L.A. Motown will terminate at Wilshire Boulevard and Westwood Boulevard westbound in the morning and eastbound in the afternoon and evening.
Starting in mid-September, the 220 line, which covers Robertson Boulevard between West Hollywood and Culver City, will run every 60 minutes between Beverly Center and Venice Boulevard at Culver Boulevard.
According to Rick Jager, senior communications rep. for Metro, the most significant change to come out of this round of realignments will be the discontinuation of the 724 Metro Rapid line. Opened in 2007, the line has always had poor ridership, Jager said. Patrons of the 724 line will be able to take the 224 line instead.
Jager said that the purpose of these realignments was to run the buses more efficiently, especially during peak hours. The changes will also enable the bus system to more effectively serve the Gold Line Eastside Extension, which should be up and running later this summer.
“Our goal is to better serve the people,” he said.
Although this round of realignments was not caused by budget cuts, Jager said that changes coming in Metro’s next fiscal year, from July 1, 2009, to June 30, 2010, will be affected by cuts.
“We are expecting to encounter an operating deficit,” he said. “There may be additional service cuts or modifications to offset budget constraints from the state level.”
Metro does realignments every June and December. A public hearing was held earlier this spring to discuss potential changes.
Additional weekday service and/or new stops will be added on lines 26/51/52/352, 45, 60, 62, 92, 105, 120, 224, 460 and 901. Additional weekend service will be added on lines 78, 111 and 794. The routes of bus lines 287, 487, 620 and 794 will be extended.
Minor changes will be made to other lines. For more information on routes and schedules call 1-800-C-O-M-M-U-T-E or check the timetables on http://www.metro.net or on the buses.