As work on Expo Phase II speeds forward, Santa Monica is busy preparing for the changes it will bring. Just last week, the City Council approved the long-debated Bergamot Transit Village. This will completely transform the Bergamot area, adding restaurants, retail stores, office-space, and apartments. While the effects of these additions will be substantial, another significant change heralded by the arrival of the new Expo Line is that the Big Blue Bus system will likely change some of its routes in order to accommodate the new ridership.
The Big Blue Bus has long been the primary form of public transportation in Santa Monica. The addition of the Expo Line, however, will add another dimension to public transportation, serving new areas and new people. As such, the Big Blue Bus is in the process of figuring out how best to accommodate and support the new Expo line (with a projected daily ridership of 64,000 people).
Representatives of the Big Blue Bus describe the challenge this creates in the Expo Integration Study, stating that they want to, “economically and strategically provide feeder service to the new rail stations, while continuing to provide service to current customers, with no new funding.” A key part of the planning process involves outreach to the community. In order to receive this community input, the Big Blue Bus will be hosting three community meetings this week to discuss proposed changes to the bus system.
Who: All three meetings will be hosted by the Big Blue Bus.
What: The workshops will focus on bus connectivity to the new expo line, but will also include discussion on the Big Blue Bus system as a whole.
There are three meetings:
1) Tuesday, February 11; 6-8 pm
Virginia Avenue Park, Thelma Terry Center
2200 Virginia Ave., Santa Monica
2) Wednesday, February 12; 6-8 pm
Civic Auditorium, East Wing
1855 Main St., Santa Monica
3) Thursday, February 13; 6-8 pm
Vista Del Mar Family Services, Gymnasium
3200 Motor Ave., Los Angeles
- Monday: Heal the Bay hosts its monthly volunteer orientation. By attending orientation, you will learn more about Heal the Bay, their mission, and the many ways that you can get involved. Attendance is also required for some volunteer programs. The orientation runs from 7 to 9 pm at Heal the Bay’s main office (1444 9th Street). RSVP here.
- Tuesday: The Santa Monica City Council hosts its weekly Tuesday meeting at the Council Chambers, located at City Hall, 1685 Main Street. The meeting begins at 5:30 pm. All City Council meetings are open to the public, and members of the public may comment on any item listed on the agenda. A list of topics can be found here. Two significant topics at this week’s meeting include a Safe Routes to School project that would improve safety for students at Samohi, as well as the Michigan Avenue Greenway project, a plan that has been extensively covered here on Santa Monica Next.
- Tuesday: The California Native Plant Society hosts a lecture titled “The Ecology of Chapparal: Adaptations to Drought, Wildfires, and Freezing.” The lecture will be presented by Dr. Stephen Davis and will take place at the First United Methodist Church (1008 11th Street, Santa Monica ) from 7:30 to 8:30 PM.
- Wednesday: The Santa Monica Planning Commission hosts its biweekly Wednesday meeting at the Council Chambers, beginning at 6 pm. The agenda for this week’s meeting can me found here.
- Friday: Save Chain Reaction will be hosting a Valentine’s Day Full Moon Peace Gathering from 5 pm until 7 pm at Chain Reaction on the 1800 block of Main Street, just north of Pico. Attendees will sign and inscribe messages on an 8-foot-tall “Save Chain Reaction Valentine Message Card” that will be presented to the Santa Monica City Council on February 25th, the day that the unique sculpture’s fate will be decided.