Street Closures in Little Tokyo to Start This Friday

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A sign on First Street announces upcoming street closures that will run from Jan. 10 through Aug. 31. (GWEN MURANAKA/Rafu Shimpo)

Street closures will begin this Friday in Little Tokyo as the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) begins street restoration work in the area of the Little Tokyo/Arts District Station.

The restoration work is part of the Regional Connector Transit Project. The various street closures are needed as construction crews begin removing the temporary deck panels at the First Street and Alameda Street intersection. The street restoration work is anticipated to last for approximately eight months. Additional work may be scheduled later if needed. Access to adjacent businesses will always be maintained, and pedestrian crosswalks on First Street and Alameda Street may be restricted intermittently during the restoration work.

A full westbound street closure along First Street, from Vignes Street to Alameda Street, will begin Friday, Jan. 10, and remain in effect through May 1, according to the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

In addition, nine weekend closures of the intersection of First and Alameda streets — running from 7 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday — are planned on Jan. 10, 17, 24 and 31, Feb. 7, 14 and 21, May 1 and Aug. 28.

Additional street closures will be needed along First Street from Central Avenue to Alameda Street from May 4 through Aug. 31 as construction crews begin removing the temporary deck panels at the intersection of First and Alameda streets, according to Metro officials, who said the street restoration work is anticipated to last for about eight months.

“During the weekend closures, crews will conduct removal of temporary deck panels, backfill, and pave the roadway as part of street restoration,” according to a Metro statement. “The deck panels have served as a temporary roadway to facilitate excavation and construction of the tunnel beneath the street while maintaining access to traffic at street level.”

Metro is encouraging people to plan ahead and allow for extra time when commuting into the Little Tokyo/Arts District area of downtown Los Angeles during the street closures.

The Regional Connector Transit Project is a 1.9-mile underground light-rail extension that will connect the A Line (Blue), the E Line (Expo) and the L Line (Gold) and will include three new stations at First Street/Central Avenue, Second Street/Broadway and Second Place/Hope Street.

The rail line is expected to serve 88,000 riders daily – including 17,000 new riders – and save commuters up to 20 minutes by reducing the need to transfer for those riding to and through Downtown. The project is forecast to be completed in 2022.

On the Web: https://www.metro.net/projects/connector/

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