1994: After Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority bus operators go on strike, CEO Franklin White orders hundreds of office workers into service on thirty bus lines weekdays from 6am to 6pm for the duration of the work stoppage.
The contingency plan for the work stoppage includes replacement operators who had previous received emergency bus operator training and obtained Class B licenses.
In this unprecedented move, additional contracted operators were brought in and service continued to expand all through labor negotiations.
The Los Angeles area’s first new light rail line of the 21st century cost $859 million. It runs along the former Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railroad rights-of-way. The 13 station, 13.7-mile line takes 36 minutes to travel from end to end. Approximately 159,000 passengers “discover gold” during opening weekend. Additional information on how the event was celebrated at the Chinatown, Highland Park, and Memorial Park stations can be found in the July 29, 2003 issue of the MyMetro employee news digest.
At the official dedication the day prior, LACMTA Board Chairman Zev Yaroslavsky and CEO Roger Snoble are joined by 500 VIP guests and a large contingent of regional and national media for opening ceremonies at the historic Union Station ticket room.
It is estimated that the Metro Gold Line will carry an average 26,000 to 32,000 boarding passengers each work day and will eliminate three million automobile trips in its first year alone.
This Metro Gold Line FAQ contains more information on the project at its opening, along with the coverage of the dedication ceremonies in the July 25, 2003 issue of the MyMetro employee news digest.