L Line
LACMTA Circle L Line.svg
Gold Line Overpass on I-210.jpg
Other name(s)Gold Line (2003–2020)
OwnerLos Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority
Line number804
TypeLight rail
SystemLos Angeles Metro Rail
Depot(s)Division 21 (Elysian Park)
Division 24 (Monrovia)
Rolling stockAnsaldoBreda P2550 or Kinki Sharyo P3010 running in 2 or 3 car consists
Ridership4,999,638 (2021) Decrease -26.3%
OpenedJuly 26, 2003; 19 years ago (2003-07-26)
Line length31 miles (49.9 km)[1]
Number of tracks2
CharacterMostly at-grade in private right-of-way, with some street-running, elevated and underground sections
Track gauge4 ft 8+12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
ElectrificationOverhead line750 V DC
Operating speed65 mph (105 km/h) (max.)
Route map

East LA Civic Center
Mariachi Plaza
Regional Connector A Line E Line  (2023)
B Line D Line 
Union Station
AmtrakFlyAway BusMetrolink (California)B Line D Line J Line 
Arroyo Seco Low Bridge
Heritage Square
Southwest Museum
Highland Park
South Pasadena
Del Mar
Memorial Park
Sierra Madre Villa
Duarte/City of Hope
Azusa Downtown
APU/Citrus College
San Dimas
La Verne
Metrolink (California)
Down arrow Future stations (unfunded)
Handicapped/disabled access All stations are accessible.
Detailed diagram
showing all crossings
East LA Civic Center
I-5 (1961).svgI-10 (1961).svg I-5 / I-10
Mariachi Plaza
B Line D Line 
Union Station luggage cart access
Union Station
AmtrakFlyAway BusMetrolink (California)B Line D Line J Line 
Division 21 yard
Avenue 33
Arroyo Seco Low Bridge
Heritage Square
French Avenue
Figueroa Street/Marmion Way
Avenue 45
Southwest Museum
Avenue 50
Marmion Way
Highland Park
Avenue 59
Avenue 60
Avenue 61
Figueroa Street
Arroyo Verde Road/Sycamore Avenue
Pasadena Avenue/Monterey Road
Indiana Avenue
Orange Grove Avenue
El Centro Street/Glendon Way
South Pasadena
Mission Street/Meridian Avenue
Hope Street
Fremont Avenue/Grevelia Street
Columbia Street/Fair Oaks Avenue
private crossing
Glenarm Street
California Boulevard
Del Mar Boulevard
Del Mar
Memorial Park
Sierra Madre Villa
Colorado Boulevard
Santa Anita Avenue
Santa Clara Street/1st Avenue
Huntington Drive (former US 66 (1961 cutout).svg US 66)/2nd Avenue
Mayflower Avenue
Magnolia Avenue
Myrtle Avenue
California Avenue
Division 24 yard
Mountain Avenue
Buena Vista Avenue
Duarte/City of Hope
Highland Avenue/Duarte Road
Irwindale Avenue
Virginia Avenue
Foothill Boulevard (former US 66 (1961 cutout).svg US 66)
San Gabriel Avenue
southbound SR 39 SR 39
Azusa Avenue
northbound SR 39 SR 39
Azusa Downtown
Dalton Avenue
Pasadena Avenue
Palm Drive
APU/Citrus College
Handicapped/disabled access All stations are accessible.

The L Line (formerly the Gold Line before 2020)[2] is a 31-mile (50 km)[1] light rail line running from Azusa to East Los Angeles via Downtown Los Angeles serving several attractions, including Little Tokyo, Union Station, the Southwest Museum, Chinatown, and the shops of Old Pasadena. The line, one of seven in the Los Angeles Metro Rail system, entered service in 2003 and is operated by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro). The L Line serves 26 stations (including two underground stations).[1]

In October 2020, the line was broken into two disconnected segments with the closure of the Little Tokyo/Arts District station in preparation for the opening of the Regional Connector tunnel in Spring 2023.[3] At that point, the L Line will cease to exist as a distinct line within the system, with the northern half serving as an extension to the A Line and the southern half serving as an extension to the E Line.[4] Bus shuttles currently connect the two portions of the line.[5]

Service description

Route description

Northbound train at Atlantic station
Northbound train at Atlantic station

Beginning in East Los Angeles, the L Line initially runs west toward Downtown Los Angeles. From its southern terminus at Atlantic, the line travels west along 3rd Street to Indiana Street, where it turns north for two blocks to 1st Street. From here, the line continues west to Little Tokyo, partly through a tunnel under Boyle Heights with two underground stations.[6] The southern part of the line currently stops at Pico/Aliso station because of Regional Connector construction. At Union Station, riders can connect to the northern segment on the L Line to Azusa. Transfers include the Metro B and Metro D subway lines, the Metro J bus rapid transit line, as well as several other transit bus lines, Metrolink regional commuter trains, Amtrak services, including the Pacific Surfliner regional route and long-distance interstate trains.

From Union Station, the L Line proceeds north on an elevated viaduct to Chinatown and then crosses the Los Angeles River adjacent to the Golden State Freeway (Interstate 5). From here, the route continues north/northeast, serving the hillside communities north of downtown, including Lincoln Heights, Mount Washington (Southwest Museum), and Highland Park. Through this stretch, the L Line operates primarily at grade, except for a short underpass below Figueroa Street. At Highland Park (50 Ave), the train runs in the median of Marmion Way, where trains run only 20 mph.

North of Highland Park, the route crosses over the Arroyo Seco Parkway (State Route 110) via the grand Santa Fe Arroyo Seco Railroad Bridge. The route continues through South Pasadena and then downtown Pasadena, primarily at grade. In Old Pasadena, the line travels underground for almost half a mile long, passing under Pasadena's main thoroughfare, Colorado Boulevard. (Memorial Park station, just north of Colorado Boulevard, is below grade.) Then, the L Line enters the median of the Foothill Freeway (Interstate 210) and continues east to Sierra Madre Villa station in Pasadena just west of the Arcadia city limits.

East of Pasadena, the route crosses over the eastbound lanes of Interstate 210 west of Santa Anita Avenue on the art-inspired Gold Line Bridge, with a stop at the Arcadia Station, located at the corner of First Avenue and Santa Clara Street. The train then crosses over Huntington Drive and stops at the Monrovia Station, north of Duarte Road at Myrtle Avenue. It continues eastbound with a stop at the Duarte/City of Hope Station located at the north side of Duarte Road, across from the City of Hope Medical Center, then continues going over the San Gabriel River and stops at the Irwindale Station at Irwindale Avenue. Trains zoom over the Foothill Freeway, over Foothill Boulevard, and stop at the Downtown Azusa Station at Azusa Avenue, north of Foothill Boulevard. Its terminus is at the APU/Citrus College Station just west of Citrus Avenue.

Hours and frequency

L Line service hours are approximately from 5:00 a.m. until 12:15 a.m. daily. Monday through Friday, trains on the L Line operate every 10 minutes during peak hours, every 12 minutes during the midday hours, and every 20 minutes into the evening. During the weekends, trains operate every 12 minutes most of the day, but every 20 minutes in the early morning and evening hours.[7]


The L Line trains travel at a maximum speed of 55 miles per hour (89 km/h). It takes 73 minutes[8] to travel its 31-mile (50 km) length,[1] at an average speed of 26.2 mph (42 km/h) over its length. The L Line is particularly slow through the Highland Park area, where trains reach speeds of only 20 mph (32 km/h) while operating in a street running section on Marmion Way.

Station listing

The following table lists the current stations of the L Line, from south to north.

Closed station
Bus interchange Temporary shuttle bus stop
Station Date Opened City/Neighborhood Major connections and notes[9][10]
Atlantic November 15, 2009 East Los Angeles Park and ride: 289 spaces
East LA Civic Center
Indiana Park and ride: 42 spaces
Soto Los Angeles (Boyle Heights)
Mariachi Plaza
Pico/Aliso Temporary northern terminus of rail service
↓ Section Closed (Bus Bridge) ↓
1st/Marquez Bus interchange Los Angeles (Boyle Heights)
1st/Vignes Bus interchange Los Angeles (Arts District)
Little Tokyo/Arts District November 15, 2009 Los Angeles (Little Tokyo/Arts District) Station closed on October 24, 2020[11]
1st/San Pedro Bus interchange Los Angeles (Little Tokyo)
Patsaouras Transit Plaza (Union Station) Bus interchange Los Angeles (Downtown) B Line D Line J Line 
AmtrakAmtrak, FlyAway (bus) LAX FlyAway and Metrolink (California) Metrolink
↑ Section Closed (Bus Bridge) ↑
Union Station July 26, 2003 Los Angeles (Downtown) Temporary southern terminus of rail service
B Line D Line J Line 
AmtrakAmtrak, FlyAway (bus) LAX FlyAway and Metrolink (California) Metrolink
Paid parking: 3,000 spaces
Chinatown Los Angeles (Chinatown)
Lincoln/Cypress Los Angeles (Lincoln Heights/Cypress Park) Park and ride: 94 spaces
Heritage Square Los Angeles (Montecito Heights) Park and ride: 129 spaces
Southwest Museum Los Angeles (Mount Washington)
Highland Park Los Angeles (Highland Park)
South Pasadena South Pasadena Park and ride: 142 spaces
Fillmore Pasadena Park and ride: 155 spaces
Del Mar Park and ride: 610 spaces
Memorial Park
Lake Park and ride: 22 spaces
Sierra Madre Villa Park and ride: 965 spaces
Arcadia March 5, 2016 Arcadia Park and ride: 300 spaces
Monrovia Monrovia Park and ride: 350 spaces
Duarte/City of Hope Duarte Park and ride: 125 spaces
Irwindale Irwindale Park and ride: 350 spaces
Azusa Downtown Azusa Park and ride: 521 spaces
APU/Citrus College Park and ride: 200 spaces


Following the extension to East Los Angeles in 2009, the line's ridership increased to almost 30,000 daily boardings.[12] As of October 2012, the average weekday daily boardings for the L Line stood at 42,417, and as of December 2014 the average daily weekday boardings had increased to 44,707. Following the extension to Azusa, ridership rose to 49,238 as of May 2016.

Annual ridership
Year Ridership
2009 7,629,332
2010 10,800,092 +41.6%
2011 11,935,709 +10.5%
2012 13,142,757 +10.1%
2013 13,415,083 +2.1%
2014 13,828,323 +3.1%
2015 14,267,244 +3.2%
2016 16,483,545 +15.5%
2017 16,546,196 +0.4%
2018 15,956,214 −3.6%
2019 15,090,394 −5.4%
2020 6,786,457 −55.0%
2021 4,999,638 −26.3%
Source: Metro[12]


Main article: History of Los Angeles Metro Rail and Busway

Construction of the L Line, near Duarte in 2014. Tracks are laid, but the overhead catenary has not been installed yet.
Construction of the L Line, near Duarte in 2014. Tracks are laid, but the overhead catenary has not been installed yet.

Much of the L Line's right-of-way through the San Gabriel Valley was built by the Los Angeles and San Gabriel Valley Railroad in 1885, eventually taken over by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, as part of the Pasadena Subdivision,[13] which saw Amtrak service until 1994, when construction began on the conversion to light rail.[14] The project was originally called the "Pasadena Metro Blue Line," and planners envisioned extending the existing Blue Line from Long Beach, but when a ban on sales tax spending on subway tunnels passed in 1998, the project became a separate line terminating at Union Station.[15]

The now-renamed Gold Line, between Union Station and Sierra Madre Villa station in East Pasadena, opened on July 26, 2003.[16][17]

Following a new right-of-way, the Gold Line Eastside Extension extended the line east between Union Station and East Los Angeles, opened on November 15, 2009.[18][19][20]

Phase 2A (the section between LA and Pasadena was Phase 1) of the Gold Line Foothill Extension, running between Sierra Madre Villa station and APU/Citrus College station in Azusa, opened on March 5, 2016.[21]

Future developments

Regional Connector Transit Project

Main article: Regional Connector

Metro is currently constructing the Regional Connector, a light rail subway tunnel across Downtown Los Angeles that will connect the A, E, and L Lines. The project will finally complete the late 1990s vision of the "Pasadena Blue Line," connecting the northern (Union Station–Azusa) segment of the L Line to the A Line (formerly the Blue Line), which runs between Los Angeles and Long Beach. The southern (Pico/Aliso–East LA) segment will be combined with the current E Line, which runs between Los Angeles and Santa Monica. The new east-west line will keep the E Line name but use the L Line's gold color icon.[22][23]

The at-grade Little Tokyo/Arts District station was demolished in 2020 and is being rebuilt as a subway station approximately 500 feet (150 meters) south and on the opposite side of Alameda from its former location.

The groundbreaking for constructing the Regional Connector took place on September 30, 2014, and is expected to be in service by 2023. [24]

Foothill Extension

Main article: Foothill Extension

Phase 2B of the Foothill Extension, running between APU/Citrus College station in Azusa and the Pomona–North Metrolink station in Pomona, is currently under construction, with a current estimated completion date of 2026.[25] This extension, like the original Gold Line to Pasadena, and the first phase of the Foothill Extension is being built by a specialized construction authority, independent of Metro. The original plan called for the extension to end at Montclair in San Bernardino County, but budget challenges forced the construction authority to cut the line back to Pomona.[26][27]

When this project is completed, it will be served by the A Line.

Eastside Transit Corridor

Main article: Eastside Transit Corridor

Metro is planning an extension of the L Line's southern leg eastward from its current terminus at Atlantic station. The proposed line would travel south on Garfield Avenue to the Citadel Outlets in Commerce, then turn east on Washington Boulevard making stops in Montebello, Pico Rivera, Santa Fe Springs and Whittier. The project is currently under environmental review, with a forecasted opening in 2035.[28]


AnsaldoBreda P2550 train at Highland Park
AnsaldoBreda P2550 train at Highland Park

Maintenance facilities

The L Line fleet is stored and maintained and is operated at Division 21 and Division 24. Division 21 is located on Vin Scully Drive (Elysian Park Drive) just north of North Broadway, overlooking the Los Angeles River, and Division 24 is located south of the I-210 freeway in Monrovia.

Rolling stock

Main article: Los Angeles Metro Rail rolling stock

Kinki Sharyo P3010 after entering service on March 5, 2016 at Highland Park Station.
Kinki Sharyo P3010 after entering service on March 5, 2016 at Highland Park Station.

L Line trains are typically two-car trains. During peak hours on weekdays, some three-car trains run.[29][30] On New Year's Day, the L Line uses three-car trains for service to the Tournament of Roses Parade and the Rose Bowl Game.

Trains are composed of high-floor articulated light rail vehicles (LRVs), either the AnsaldoBreda P2550 or the Kinki Sharyo P3010. The line initially operated with Siemens P2000 LRVs, but they were transferred to the A Line and E Line in April 2012. Once the Regional Connector opens, Metro's entire LRV fleet will be used on the line.


The following noteworthy incidents have occurred on the L Line since opening.

See also


  1. ^ a b c d "Facts at a Glance". LACMTA. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  2. ^ "Meet the Line Letters: Information for Metro Employees" (PDF). LACMTA. December 2019. Retrieved January 7, 2020.
  3. ^ "Metro closing Little Tokyo/Arts District Station for nearly 2 years". October 19, 2020.
  4. ^ Fonseca, Ryan. "Ignore Those 'Line A' Signs. Metro's Blue Line Will Reopen As The 'A Line'". LAist. Archived from the original on September 26, 2019. Retrieved September 27, 2019.
  5. ^ Hymon, Steve (September 15, 2020). "Bus shuttles to replace L Line (Gold) service between Union Station and Pico/Aliso Station during 22-month closure to complete Regional Connector". Metro. The Source. Retrieved September 16, 2020.
  6. ^ Guccione, Jean (November 17, 2006). "1st of two Eastside rail tunnels is finished". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 17, 2016.
  7. ^ "Metro L Line schedule". Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. June 27, 2021. Retrieved November 5, 2021.
  8. ^ "Gold Line timetable" (PDF). LACMTA. June 24, 2018. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 12, 2019. Retrieved June 24, 2021.
  9. ^ "Metro L Line (Gold)". www.metro.net. Retrieved July 23, 2020.
  10. ^ "Metro Parking Lots by Line". www.metro.net. Retrieved July 23, 2020.
  11. ^ Metro: The Source. Bus shuttles to replace L Line (Gold) service between Union Station and Pico/Aliso Station during 22-month closure to complete the Regional Connector
  12. ^ a b "Metro Ridership". Metro.net. Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. February 2020. Archived from the original on April 10, 2021. Retrieved February 12, 2021.
  13. ^ Hawthorne, Christopher (May 20, 2016). "Why the Expo Line to Santa Monica marks a rare kind of progress in American cities". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 12, 2016.
  14. ^ Rasmussen, Cecilia (July 13, 2003). "Pasadena's Gold Line Will Travel a History-Laden Route". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 19, 2016.
  15. ^ Freemark, Yonah (March 26, 2010). "Los Angeles' Gold Line Foothill Extension Approved for Funding, Will Begin Construction Later this Year". The Transport Politic. Retrieved March 12, 2016.
  16. ^ Streeter, Kurt (June 19, 2003). "Gold Line Is Set to Open July 26". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 14, 2016.
  17. ^ Lund, Dr. Hollie & Willson, Dr. Richard W. (April 2005), The Pasadena Gold Line: Development Strategies, Location Decisions, and Travel Characteristics along a New Rail Line in the Los Angeles Region (PDF), San Jose, CA: Mineta Transportation Institute
  18. ^ Bloomekatz, Ari B. (November 13, 2009). "Q&A : Gold Line links downtown and East L.A. : The 6-mile light-rail extension, which cost $898 million, will open Sunday with free rides and entertainment". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 14, 2016.
  19. ^ Bloomekatz, Ari B. (December 21, 2011). "L.A.'s historic 1st Street bridge reopens after 3-year closure". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 14, 2016.
  20. ^ Becerra, Hector (June 16, 2009). "Making the Eastside safe for Gold Line light rail extension". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 14, 2016.
  21. ^ Scauzillo, Steve (February 17, 2015). "Gold Line authority makes push for next extension from Azusa to Montclair". San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Retrieved March 13, 2016.
  22. ^ "The most anticipated transit projects opening in time for the 2028 LA Olympics". Curbed LA. Retrieved November 25, 2018.
  23. ^ Broverman, Neal (October 7, 2016). "Metro's Regional Connector Will Change Everything Los Angeles Magazine". Los Angeles Magazine. Retrieved August 14, 2019.
  24. ^ LA Metro. LACMTA https://www.metro.net/projects/connector-2/. Retrieved December 21, 2022. ((cite web)): Missing or empty |title= (help)
  25. ^ Chiland, Elijah (June 23, 2017). "Metro approves $1.4B construction plan for Gold Line extension to Claremont". Curbed LA.
  26. ^ Hymon, Steve (November 13, 2018). "Construction Authority releases plan to build Gold Line extension in two phases". The Source. Retrieved November 6, 2021.
  27. ^ "2019-0528 – METRO GOLD LINE EXTENSION TO CLAREMONT". Metro Board. Retrieved November 6, 2021.
  28. ^ "Eastside Transit Corridor Phase 2". Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. December 16, 2011. Retrieved November 6, 2021.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  29. ^ "L.A. Metro to Make Major Improvements to the Metro Gold Line that Add Service and Help Relieve Crowding for East San Gabriel Valley Communities". www.metro.net. Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  30. ^ Hymon, Steve (March 11, 2016). "Gold Line to have some longer trains". The Source. Retrieved January 13, 2019.
  31. ^ Blankstein, Andrew; Abdollah, Tami (September 12, 2007). "7 hurt when Gold Line train hits truck at Highland Park crossing". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 5, 2014.
  32. ^ Abdollah, Tami; Rabin, Jeffrey L. (September 22, 2007). "6 hurt when Gold Line train hits vehicle". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 5, 2014.
  33. ^ "Big rig hits Gold Line tracks, causes traffic". Eagle Rock News. October 2007. Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. Retrieved December 22, 2014.
  34. ^ Knoll, Corina (August 27, 2011). "Gold Line stabbing victim in critical but stable condition". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 5, 2014.
  35. ^ Allen, Lily (April 24, 2014). "Gold Line service suspended between Lake and Sierra Madre Villa stations due to freeway truck accident". The Source. LACMTA. Retrieved July 17, 2014.
  36. ^ Day, Brian (March 7, 2016). "Fiery crash on 210 Freeway severs just-opened Gold Line between Pasadena, Arcadia". San Gabriel Tribune. Retrieved March 7, 2016.
  37. ^ Winton, Richard (February 22, 2018). "Suspect in wild subway tunnel chase charged with six felonies". Los Angeles Times.
  38. ^ Chen, Anna (April 26, 2018). "Gold Line: repairs completed, trains now resuming scheduled service". The Source. Retrieved December 26, 2018.
  39. ^ "Man suspected in Metro Gold Line stabbing death is charged". December 1, 2018.
  40. ^ Uranga, Rachel (May 11, 2022). "Metro rail passenger set ablaze in unprovoked attack". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on August 16, 2022. Retrieved August 16, 2022.

Route map:

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