West Santa Ana Branch Transit Corridor
LocaleLos Angeles
WebsiteWest Santa Ana Branch Transit Corridor
TypeLight rail
Planned opening2033–2035 (Slauson–Pioneer)
2043 (full line)
Line length19.3 mi (31.1 km)
Number of tracks2
CharacterDedicated right of way with elevated, at-grade and underground sections
Track gauge4 ft 8+12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Electrification750 V DC overhead catenary
Route map

Union Station A Line B Line D Line J Line Metrolink (California)AmtrakCAHSR
*new platforms at Union Station Forecourt
or behind the Metropolitan Water District Building
Little Tokyo A Line E Line 
Arts/Industrial District
Up arrow Phase 2 (c. 2043)
Phase 1 (2033–2035)Down arrow
Slauson A Line 
Florence/Salt Lake
Rio Honda Channel
I-105/C Line C Line 

The West Santa Ana Branch Transit Corridor is a planned light rail line, mostly following the Pacific Electric's historic West Santa Ana Branch, connecting Downtown Los Angeles to the City of Artesia and other cities in southeastern Los Angeles County.


See also: West Santa Ana Branch

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) has $4 billion[1][2] in funds available for construction planned to begin in 2022. The plan included in the Measure M transportation funding measure is to build improvements in two stages.

In June 2017, Metro issued a Request for Proposals to study alternatives for this new LA Metro Rail route.[3] Metro has narrowed the options to two alternatives and are currently preparing to publish the Draft EIS/EIR for public comment.[2][1] The draft EIS/EIR is planned to be released in 2020.[4]

The project's timeline is expected to be accelerated under the Twenty-eight by '28 initiative.[5]

The environmental impact report released in 2021 set an estimated cost of $8.6 billion for the line.[6]

Proposed routings and modes

The West Santa Ana Branch Transit Corridor project is proposed as a 19.3-mile (31.1 km) light rail transit line that would connect downtown Los Angeles to Artesia. Along the route, it would also serve the communities of Vernon, Huntington Park, Bell, Cudahy, South Gate, Downey, Paramount, Bellflower and Cerritos in the southeast area of the county.[1]

The southern portion route, east and south of Slauson, leaves the A Line corridor via the former Pacific Electric Whittier Line, continues south on a former BNSF rail line (Florence/Salt Lake to Paramount/Rosecrans), and then transitions to the old Santa Ana right of way (south of Paramount/Rosecrans). These corridors are owned by the Ports of Los Angeles/Long Beach and Metro, requiring minimal property acquisition.

The northern alignment through Downtown Los Angeles is being studied as a possible underground light rail transit route. Six options were proposed.[1] As of 2018, two options were being considered (both of which would connect to the southern alignment by paralleling the A Line between Washington and Slauson stations, as well as part of an existing freight rail line along Randolph Street):[4][2]

By March 2018, Cerritos had opted out of the project, leaving the southern terminus at Pioneer.[7] In November 2018, Metro removed the Blue Line stations north of Slauson from the study area, citing redundant service and expedited travel times as the prime reasons.[8]

In 2019, Metro announced that as part of its design analysis, it would study opening the line in two stages, with the initial opening $1 billion segment running from Pioneer Station in Artesia north to Slauson Station on the Blue Line, with the remainder of the $3 billion route into downtown built as phase two. Metro staff were "optimistic" that it would be feasible to build the line to Slauson by 2028 with existing Measure M funds. Metro was also studying public-private partnerships that could accelerate the construction schedule of the entire line. The service is not planned to interline with the A Line to 7th Street/Metro Center due to operational constraints.[9] Under the proposed plans, design for the initial segment would be complete by 2021 and construction would begin in 2022.[10]

Route Selection: Alternative: E

By 2022, the Metro Board backed the Union Station option as the northern terminus.[11] Construction on the segment south of Slauson was expected to begin construction in 2023 with an estimated opening of 2033 to 2035.[12][13] The second phase north of Slauson to Union Station is expected to be completed in 2043 at the earliest.[14]


Phase Expected
Station[1] Location Connecting
2 after 2043 Union Station Downtown Los Angeles Amtrak Amtrak
CAHSR California High-Speed Rail
Metrolink (California) Metrolink
 A Line
 B Line
 D Line
 J Line
Little Tokyo/Arts District Little Tokyo  A Line
 E Line
Arts/Industrial District Arts District
1 2033–2035 Slauson Florence-Graham  A Line
Pacific/Randolph Huntington Park/Walnut Park
Florence/Salt Lake Bell/Cudahy
Firestone South Gate
Gardendale Downey
I-105/C Line transfer station Paramount  C Line
Bellflower Bellflower
Pioneer Artesia

Extension into Orange County

Metro is evaluating an optional station in Cerritos at Bloomfield Avenue (just north of the Los Angeles-Orange county line) to facilitate a possible future extension into Orange County; it would eventually connect to the under-construction OC Streetcar, which also uses part of the Pacific Electric WSAB right-of-way.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e "West Santa Ana Branch Transit Corridor". Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Retrieved June 28, 2018.[non-primary source needed]
  2. ^ a b c Tinoco, Matt (May 24, 2018). "Metro directors pick two options for new rail line through Downtown LA". Curbed LA. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  3. ^ "Metro West Santa Ana Branch Rail Recommended Route(s) To Go To Metro Board This Month". Streetsblog Los Angeles. May 2018. Retrieved June 28, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c "Project Alternatives". Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Retrieved December 2, 2018.[non-primary source needed]
  5. ^ Sharp, Steven (November 27, 2018). "Here are the 28 Projects that Metro Could Complete Before the 2028 Olympics". Urbanize. Retrieved July 2, 2018.
  6. ^ Fine, Howard (December 20, 2021). "Metro Planning Rail Routes into County's Southeast Quadrant". Los Angeles Business Journal. Retrieved December 31, 2021.
  7. ^ Hews, Brian (March 11, 2018). "METRO TO HOLD MEETINGS ON WEST SANTA ANA BRANCH TRANSIT PROJECT, THE 20-MILE LIGHT RAIL FROM ARTESIA TO DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES". Cerritos Community News. Hews Media Group. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  8. ^ "Board Report" (PDF). metro.net. Los Angeles County. November 14, 2018. pp. 1–33. Retrieved March 14, 2023.[non-primary source needed]
  9. ^ "Board Report" (PDF). metro.net. Los Angeles County. September 18, 2019. pp. 1–6. Retrieved March 14, 2023.[non-primary source needed]
  10. ^ "LA Metro to present latest West Santa Ana light-rail plan to the public". Progressive Railroading. January 2, 2021. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  11. ^ Hymon, Steve (January 18, 2022). "Metro Board to select route and terminus for light rail line to Southeast L.A. County". The Source. LACMTA. Retrieved January 21, 2022.
  12. ^ Sharp, Steven (January 17, 2022). "Metro staff recommend Union Station route for West Santa Ana Branch". Urbanize. Retrieved January 21, 2022.
  13. ^ 2021-0724 - WEST SANTA ANA BRANCH TRANSIT CORRIDOR PROJECT (Report). Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. January 19, 2022. p. 2. Retrieved January 21, 2022.
  14. ^ Scauzillo, Steve (January 27, 2022). "LA Metro board OKs new light-rail line from Artesia to Union Station". Los Angeles Daily News. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  15. ^ "Bus and Rail System Map" (PDF). Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Retrieved December 3, 2018.[non-primary source needed]