LA by Subway – The New York Times

There are a lot of free files and Cheap things to do In Los Angeles. As a traveler, the problem is getting to them. From Los Angeles International Airport, rental cars have recently been priced at about $75 per day before tax and gas. Taxis and app-based tours between the airport and downtown cost between $40 and $70, depending on the time of day. Then there’s the night parking – $50 to $60 not unusual.

But there is a bargain alternative: the subway, a steal at $1.75 per ride, $5 per day passes Or $18 for a week.

In Los Angeles, the land of traffic jams, the first car is the car. But for decades, the Los Angeles County Public Transit Authority, metro, trying to wean Angelenos off its cars, has built more than 100 train stations on seven lines since 1990, including the new K Line, which opened in October and runs through South Los Angeles. In June, the Transit Regional Project standardized downtown connections, making it possible to ride east-west between East Los Angeles and Santa Monica, and north-south between Azusa and Long Beach without transit. Another extension, due in 2024, will be associated with Los Angeles International Airportone of nine futuristic stations set to open before the city hosts the 2028 Summer Olympics.

The system’s usefulness to residents varies depending on where they live in the sprawling city. But, said Michael Giuliano, Los Angeles editor at Time Out Media, who has written About the system, “As a tourist, there are quite a few places you want to go on a metro route.”

Nothing makes me feel better in knowing a destination than successfully navigating it. From my point of view, going places knows no places unless I find my way using local transportation. When I told friends I was headed to LA to see the city via subway, one of them joked that it would be “too short a story.” Angelino, who admitted she had never taken the train, advised me to pack pepper spray.

But three days of riding the rails proved them mostly wrong. Not only is the subway well connected to popular sites—from Santa Monica beaches to downtown museums—its trains run frequently. Although my experience wasn’t threatening, the system was resist With an apparent influx of homeless people on the trains. On several occasions, I’ve ridden with Metro Ambassadors, the employees who travel through the system to educate the public and help ensure safety.

In a province covering more than 4,000 square miles and 88 cities, there were places I couldn’t get to by subway. One tour company offers hiking tours to the icon Hollywood sign He told me their starting point was not near public transportation. Bus lines and ride services can fill in the gaps, but with one notable exception – FlyAway buswhich runs approximately every half hour between the airport and Union Station Downtown ($9.75) – I stuck to the trains to test their usefulness. This is what I found.

The FlyAway bus dropped me off at Union Station, a modern 1939 mission gem that not only serves as a hub for Amtrak and regional trains. Metrolink Servicing Los Angeles County and five surrounding counties, but also as a connection for three metro lines, A, B, and D.

These metro lines make many stops throughout the city center, an area full of cultural attractions – including the indigenous Mexican settlement of Olvera Street Opposite union station – and many hotels like Freehand Los Angeles.

About four blocks from the nearest downtown subway station, the old hotel occupies the 1924 Exchange Building and offers hostel-style rooms with multiple beds popular with students as well as private rooms like mine, which feature macrame wall hangings and eclectic art. Reminiscent of thrift stores ( I paid $150 a night).

The next morning, I meet my fellow budget guests—a French family in town to watch Lakers games, a Danish backpacker pair and an Irish student group—at the nearby subway station.

“Guests will ask for schedules and nearest stops, which is a bit funny because we drive everywhere,” said Rich O’Kane, the hotel’s general manager, referring to the staff.

Between the subway and walking, I found the city center easy to navigate and rich to explore, starting at wide Museum (Free), Impressive home to collectors Eli and Edythe Broad’s collection of contemporary art filled with works by Basquiat, Lichtenstein, and Warhol. In the next building, I took a break in the quiet gardens behind Walt Disney Concert Halla swooping steel landmark by architect Frank Gehry.

Nearby, I rode the shortest rail line in Los Angeles, Angels Flighta funicular from 1901 that goes up a hill 1 block away for 50 cents if you have a metro card ($1 if you don’t).

With a subway stop almost across the street, Grand Central Marketa food hall dating back to 1917, lured me over and over again for creamy scrambled egg sandwiches from Eggslut ($12) and Salvadorean virginia, or stuffed corn tortillas, from Sarita Pupuseria ($5.50).

From downtown, the B Line runs northwest into the heart of Hollywood. Showing up at Hollywood/Highland Station was like showing up in low-rise, sunny Times Square. Actors dressed as Spider-Man and Michael Jackson were with tourists for tips. Promoters have been touring TMZ bus tours of celebrity hangouts. Crossed paths instantly with Groucho Marx star on Hollywood Walk of Famewhere Tom Cruise shared a dock with Weird Al Yankovic and fans took a selfie on a Snoop Dogg board.

The starry avenue traversed Grauman’s Chinese Theater in 1927 (now known as the TCL Chinese Theatre) as I oversized my footprint with Robert De Niro among the many celebrity homages cemented to the sidewalk before his entrance.

The B Line offers access to less crazy neighborhoods, too, including Koreatown, where I dropped by to enjoy salmon drizzled in umami oil from a conveyor-belt sushi spot. Quora ($3.65 a plate).

The road also provides a ready-to-reach solution Griffith Park, the lush Santa Monica Mountains Preserve, with panoramic views of the city and dozens of hiking trails. From the Vermont/Sunset B Line station, I caught it for free LADOT dash bus to Griffith Park Observatoryfamous for its rooftop views, and watch the exciting Star Show at the Planetarium ($10).

First-time visitors are often surprised by the size of metro Los Angeles, which includes Long Beach to the south, Malibu to the west, and the San Gabriel Mountains to the east.

“People come to California and want to go to the beach, but they don’t realize that Santa Monica is about 12 miles from downtown LA, and it’s a long 12 miles, whether you’re driving or taking public transportation,” said El-Sayed. . Oken, Director of Freehand.

On Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. Google Maps put the train ride at E-Line From the city center in just over an hour, like driving, except for looking for a parking lot.

The E Line ran mostly above ground, and provided a tour ride across the USC campus to Culver City and finally Santa Monica. Registered ads have identified attractions near each station, eg Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County And Exhibition garden At the Expo Park / USC stand.

Line E ends a few blocks from Shabiya Street Santa Monica Pierfilled with amusement park rides and restaurants, which were mostly closed in the morning, as a guitarist was playing the only Latin standard “Quizás, Quizás, Quizás” For walkers who enjoy quiet views.

Beach cruiser bike rental Blazing saddles ($13 for one hour) On the sidewalk, I pedaled south about three miles to Venice’s oceanfront neighborhood, where quad skaters performing spins drew skaters.

With its chic boutique hotels and trendy restaurants, Santa Monica felt special, an impression corrected by the colorful Jamaican cottage. Cha cha chickenjust a block from the beach, serves up spicy chicken (from $11.95) on a shaded patio amidst Bob Marley paintings.

New Metro Markets k line With posters throughout the system encouraging riders to “connect with creativity,” a nod to the South LA communities that have nurtured the likes of artist Kehinde Wiley and actress Issa Rae and to the public art at every stop.

“Art is a component of the introduction to the system,” said Maya Emsden, who oversees Metro’s public art programs, including the commissioning of artwork for each of the seven existing K Line stations. “It’s amazing.”

On a recent afternoon, I rode Route K, departing from its northernmost terminus at Expo/Crenshaw, where it meets the E Line, through the communities of Crenshaw and Inglewood, home to SoFi Stadiumwhere the Rams and Chargers play in the NFL.

In Crenshaw, some of the most interesting art is yet to be uncovered on the road. Economic Development Organization Destination Crenshaw It commissioned more than 100 black artists to be installed in Central Park and along 1.3 miles of Crenshaw Street alongside train tracks at grade level. The project will represent “the talent, creativity and passion we have for the community,” Jason Foster, the foundation’s president and chief operating officer, said over coffee at Hot and Cool Cafe Close to Leimert Park.

From the café, we walked a few blocks to the future site of Sankofa Park, a wedge-shaped building with gardens and a pedestrian ramp to the second floor. Set to open next February, the park is part of a $100 million project and will display a sculpture by Mr. Wiley.Rumors of warstring “and”car culture,” a work by Charles Dixon, based in Compton, California, featuring African figures crowned by cars.

“When it gets connected to the airport, it will be the first thing people see in Los Angeles,” Mr. Foster said, adding his hopes that the park will become a LA-style attraction. Little Tokyo or Mariachi PlazaBoth can be reached by train.

In three days, I’ve never made it to the Hollywood sign. But wherever you go, you save money, emissions, and immeasurable stress from inertia.

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