Metro, Intersection plan to technologize Blue Line

Written by Andrew Corselli, Managing Editor
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The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) recently announced that it has partnered with technology company Intersection to install a new digital communications and advertising network on the southern portion of the Metro Blue Line.

Part of Metro’s “New Blue” rail line improvements, customers riding the Metro Blue Line between Long Beach and Compton Stations will see new IxNTouch information screens at each station. The technology, powered by Intersection’s transit communications platform, IxNConnect, aims to allow Metro to communicate with customers across a network of digital screens and help customers better navigate the agency’s transit system.

The interactive touch screens plan to give riders greater access to train and bus arrival times, service alerts and advisories, and system and connections maps, among other digital tools. Once complete, the network hopes to allow Metro to target information and messages system-wide, by line, by station and even individual station screen.

Metro and Intersection plan to install nearly 100 digital screens by the time the “New Blue” improvements are complete this October. The new customer information screens will be phased in across the entire Metro Rail system, and the Orange Line and Silver Line by 2024. IxNTouch panels will be located on station platforms, mezzanines and plazas, with at least two screens at every station.

The infrastructure upgrade comes at no cost to taxpayers or riders, as it is paid for by advertising revenues, Intersection noted. Intersection added that it has committed to investing nearly $20 million in digital equipment on the Metro rail system at no cost to the agency.

“If you’re headed south toward Long Beach on the Metro Blue Line, we have great news,” said L.A. County Supervisor and Metro Board Chair Sheila Kuehl. “You will be the first Metro riders to benefit from this digital technology. The new system will finally bring train arrival times to digital screens at each Blue Line station and make it much easier for you to make your destinations throughout the expansive Metro Rail system.”

“We are thrilled to be a part of Metro’s ambitious efforts to transform transportation across Los Angeles County,” said Scott Goldsmith, President of Cities & Transit, Intersection. “We are excited to launch with the Metro Blue Line and continue our work throughout the Metro system, providing riders with the information they need, while driving revenue for Metro that can be reinvested in the system.”

“We are moving toward customized information delivered in real-time to riders in the way they want and expect,” said Metro CEO Phillip A. Washington. “This is just the latest example of our continuing efforts to create a world-class transportation system in Los Angeles County.”

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