As much as I would like the Vets to have the easiest access possible, I don't think this is a good place for the station. It's a backed-up area as it is, and everywhere else from VA is considerable walk. If the VA was able to use some of their land for it, I think it could be done feasibly, but as pointed out above, it can't be, even if the administrators of that VA wanted it.
stop making us veterans jump through hoops to get our healthcare. You talk of a shuttle bus but it's just more obstacles in our way. The VA Station is needed, build as a way of saying thank you.
I would use it on occasion if there's a convenient crosswalk across Wilshire from the station to the Wadsworth Theatre. That would greatly increase my willingness to see productions at the Wadsworth if I don't have to fight traffic and parking to get there.
I voted yes for the station but said that I probably would not use it because the area I live in is served by the Sepulveda Veterans Hospital unless referred to the West Los Angeles.
As a member of the VFW, I can tell you that at times, veterans struggle to find transportation to their scheduled appointments or to the emergency room or walk-in clinic if needed. There are times that the VA Shuttle does not run and this would be the quickest/easiest way for them to reach the needed medical treatment.
There is little chance of there being much if any parking available for subway users at the VA. Yes, there is land there that is badly underutilized, but it is owned by the federal government and can only be used for veterans. The VA has already said they do not intend to allow any parking by the general public on the surface of their property so it really is not an option. Another reason this poll is flawed, because everyone thinks there will be parking here so they are supporting the station, but it is not the case. Ask the MTA.
People commuting to LA on the 405 (North or South) are not going to take a bus to the western terminus of the subway. They will drive. Sad to say, but it's true. Therefore, we need a station with potential for large parking availability. The VA Hospital station fits this criterion.
Plus a VA station would be a grat transfer point for commuter heading south on Sepulveda.
I do believe a station at the VA would serve a great purpose. People forget that just south of the VA there is a big employement center at Santa Monica and Sepulveda which is a seven minute walk (2 minute bike ride) from the VA. So this station would be the gateway for that area, being that the Westwood/Wishire station would be farther away.
"I think it would be a great idea for vets going to the hospital for any reason. for everyone who will not need it for that reason, try not to be so selfish. this will also get the line just that much closer to the ocean."
Look, I'm all for veterans getting better access to the services they need, but you gotta understand this: this project is competing for money against other projects all around the country, and one of the most significant criteria by which it will be judged is cost effectiveness. Regardless of the station location, the cost will be the same, but the fact is, if the station is further west, it will almost certainly have more ridership, and thus be more cost-effective. It will provide better access to Brentwood, AND vets will still be able to use it by means of a shuttle bus, the same shuttle bus they would be using if the station were closer. It just really is the right decision, and not all that selfish.
As for the 405 line, it should have an underground transfer station on-street at Wilshire and Westwood, but that's a whole different can of worms...
THE KEY TO ME IS WHAT HAPPENS THE THE DECISIONS ON 2 OTHER ITEMS== WHERE WILL THE UCLA STATION GO AND WHAT KIND OF 405 LINE (SFV TO LAX) LINE WILL BE.. BECAUSE, AS A NORTH SOUTH JUNCTION, IT HAS TO BE EITHER AT UCLA (MY PREFERED) OR AT VA/WESTWOOD AREA. iT IF YOU BUILD IT AS A TRANSFER STATION, BUS INTERFACE AND KISS AND RIDE, MAY NOT NEED TO GO WITH TONS OF PARKING... MAYBE THAT WOULD MITIGATE SOME TRAFFIC..
I think it would be a great idea for vets going to the hospital for any reason. for everyone who will not need it for that reason, try not to be so selfish. this will also get the line just that much closer to the ocean.
I quite agree with the above post. If the choice is a station west of Westwood in MOS 3 or no station, than I would take the VA station. But if the choice is between the VA and something further west, I would take the latter.
You wrote: "As of 11am the majority of votes in our latest poll are in favor of a VA Hospital station at the currently planned terminus of the Westside subway, but it seems most people who voted don’t plan on actually using the station."
I think this is due to lack of options and explanation in the poll. The choice given is betwen VA station [I'll use it / I won't] and No VA station. Of course, if that is really the choice, most of us would vote to build a station.
But the real choice should be VA Station versus Barrington/Federal Station versus Bundy station. If you asked that question, I think you will find many more people in support of Barrington instead of the station right in front of the VA, or extending the subway to Bundy in the first phase.
I would also like to address this comment: "Some of the previous commenters have suggested that the station should be built at some distance from the hospital, such as at Federal or Bundy, implying that it is only a short distance from the hospital. It is a fallacy to think that it would be used by vets if it is that far away. Many many vets are infirm and have great mobility problems; just getting to and from the parking lot can be a challenge for these often elderly patients."
As the commenter wrote, "just getting to and from the parking lot is a challenge." For these patients the VA currently provides a parking lot shuttle. This shuttle would need to go to a "VA Station" anyway, since it would be on the far side of the parking lots, a 3 or 4 minute walk from the hospital for an elderly Vet. If the station portal is at Wilshire/Federal, the shuttle would go there instead.
And healthy VA employees will be quite capable of walking from either station location.
I suggest you redo the poll, and offer a choice between station locations, or even a choice to spend the money on some other project, like light rail to LAX from the current Green Line terminus.
Selecting a VA stop now versus resurrecting a Barrington stop in the future seems shortsighted. Metro eliminated Barrington due to its proximity to both the Bundy stop and a proposed VA stop. Even if VA is eliminated, a resurrected Barrington stop would still be very close to Bundy with considerable overlap in their 1/2 mile radii, however, my instinct tells me the ridership is there for both Bundy and Barrington. The dense apartment nature around Barrington and commercial property on Wilshire is surely greater than most of the selected stops within Santa Monica, except, perhaps, the terminus. Health care accessibility for veterans could easily be facilitated by a VA shuttle connecting to Barrington and Westwood on either side of the hospital.
The only potentially redeeming attribute for a VA stop is it's proximity to I-405, which in this vicinity is the likely right of way for a transit line connecting the valley to the purple line, expo line, and ultimately LAX. However, without that planning done and without a commitment from the feds on access to their real estate, building a stop at the VA hinges on too many what-ifs and an expensive parking structure to accommodate commuters from the valley who supposedly will use the purple line. Though, I bet, if these commuters drive all the way to the VA, then they'll drive the rest of the distance to their Westside destination. The subway should be built from the local perspective first and from the commuter perspective as a distant second. Also, with the VA, there is no potential for TOD.
I think the MTA is making the right decisions in regards to the subway planning, that is except for this station. People west of the 405 wanted one station west of Westwood to avoid the 405/VA bottleneck and the MTA originally said there would be a station at either Barrington or Bundy, which made a lot of sense. Putting the station next to the 405 in the VA, which is in of itself the main reason for the bottleneck in the area, accomplishes nothing. Everyone will be forced onto Wilshire, which is the main problem now as the VA blocks access through the area.
Not sure how the MTA is getting such high ridership estimates. Only a few people get on and off here on the 720 now (usually many more get on and off at Barrington). The hospital does provide some ridership, but it is just one building and if you aren't going there, then there is little reason to use a station here as one can see from the Google maps that the area surrounding here is just grass, trees, empty parking lots and the freeway. Having a direct connection to Century City from an area like Barrington would really bring in a lot of ridership through linking an employment center to where many people live is key. However, people aren't going to bus it in heavy traffic over to the VA just to then transfer to the subway to a place like Century City.
I am also not sure how the MTA got away with having a big drawn out process for whether to include a Crenshaw station where there is little density, but didn't solicit any input when it got rid of Barrington, which has much more density and a major LA public high school just a block away.
Veterans groups don't want a station on the VA property, because it basically opens up the VA to public use when the stated use of the VA is for Veterans. Vets are going to raise a ruckus on this and bring a negative tone to the whole subway project because of this. Also, this is federal land not the City of Los Angeles so that opens it up to some federal groups getting involved in this station planning.
Overall, it just doesn't make any sense to avoid one dense area which is zoned for even more additional high-rises in favor of an area that is mostly birds and squirrels and can't be built on in the future. It would at least make some sense if the MTA were allowed to buiild a major parking facility here, but that seems almost impossible given the land restrictions.
Time and time again across the world, evidence shows that if people can't access a station by a relatively easy walk either through their destination or origin then ridership plummets. We are going to find that out the hard way with this expensive mistake. Even if a Barrington and/or Bundy extension had to be broken out into another phase it would be worth it to plan the line the right way for future generations.
A station at the VA Hospital would be a terrible waste of funds given that there is a great mix of high density office,retail and residential uses just to the WEST of the VA Property. A station at Wilshire/Barrington would make much more sense, as it would serve the high-density West LA neighborhood and still be close enough to the VA for shuttle service (for the veterans and visitors that will actually use the subway, once in a while, to get to and from the hospital).
This station is a bad location. The VA will not allow development, parking for transit riders, or a bus transfer center on their land, and all of the buses that serve the VA also serve Westwood and Bundy (the stations east and west of here). So it will only be useful to get to the VA hospital itself.
Instead, the station should be placed a couple blocks west at the edge of the VA property, between Barrington and Federal, where there are many offices and apartments in walking distance. The VA would still be only a 5 minute walk or short shuttle ride away; the current parking lot shuttles could also serve the new station portal at the corner of Wilshire and Federal. A station there would be much better used and more cost-effective.