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Greuel and Perry Want Late Night DASH on Fridays

By Eric Richardson
Published: Thursday, July 17, 2008, at 11:07PM
Blurred Bus Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Earlier this week Councilmembers Wendy Greuel and Jan Perry submitted a motion that asks DOT to take a look at extended evening service for Downtown DASH. The motion starts small, specifically targeting additional service for Friday evenings.

The short motion reads:

The City's DASH transit service provides local, community-based shuttle bus services to various activity centers within a community. Six routes serve the Downtown Los Angeles area and provide almost 7 million passenger trips per year. DASH Downtown operates Monday through Friday every 5-12 minutes, however, the service does not operate past 6:00 p.m on weekdays.

As Downtown Los Angeles evolves into a vibrant city center providing more restaurant, entertainment and retail options, more evening transit services are needed for residents and visitors to access these venues, particularly on Friday nights. It is important that the Los Angeles Department of Transportation examine the feasibility of extending the hours of the existing Downtown DASH service to meet the growing transit needs to ensure that it is convenient, friendly, safe and enjoyable to get about and around Downtown Los Angeles on Friday nights.

I THEREFORE MOVE that the City Council direct the Los Angeles Department of Transportation to report on the feasibility of extending the hours of DASH Downtown routes on Friday nights, including options to partner with businesses to raise the necessary funds.

Those last few words are key. DASH funding comes out of monies generated by Proposition A, and DOT has projected severe shortfalls going forward. This has hamstrung the department from adding additional service.

If private partners can raise the operating funds, though, DOT has a fleet of buses just waiting to be put to work. The Art Walk DASH was the first major pilot for this concept, and DOT has been touting the model as a possible solution ever since. Nightlife operators have shown an interest in putting up some money to help people get to their establishments, so the match may not be as hard as one might think.

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