Plans for the first phase of an extension of the Purple Line subway in downtown Los Angeles toward the westside were approved today by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board of Directors.
However, to reach a stop on Constellation Boulevard in Century City—a route opposed by many residents of Beverly Hills but supported by many people the city of Los Angeles and elsewhere.
The approved segment of the $5.6-billion extension will stretch roughly 3.9 miles from Wilshire Boulevard and Western Avenue to La Cienega Boulevard and Wilshire. There will be three new stations along Wilshire Boulevard at La Brea, Fairfax and La Cienega.
“We are now closer than we’ve ever been to getting this project under construction," Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chairman Antonio Villaraigosa said in a statement released by Metro. "This long-awaited subway extension will provide a faster, more reliable transit alternative for hundreds of thousands of Angelenos on a daily basis.”
The remainder of the project would add four more stations in downtown Beverly Hills, Century City, Westwood/UCLA and the Westwood/Veterans Affairs Hospital.
The board will wait to make a decision on the Purple Line west of La Cienega until a public hearing requested earlier this week by Beverly Hills can be held.
When complete, riders would be able to travel from downtown L.A. to Westwood in 25 minutes, according to Metro officials, who predict an average 49,300 weekday boardings.
The subway route does not go all the way to the coast—although it is
often dubbed the "Subway to the Sea."
— City News Service contributed to this report.