Jun 14, 2007 18:16 ET
FlyAway Bus Network Adds Westwood as New Location to Serve Travelers Non-Stop to Los Angeles International Airport
Bus Departs Every 30 Minutes to Airport Terminals for $4 Fare; Passengers Ride Free From June 14 Through June 30
LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwire - June 14, 2007) - Non-stop LAX FlyAway bus service between Westwood and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) began today, offering West Los Angeles travelers a convenient, comfortable and reasonably priced alternative to driving to the airport. Los Angeles Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa and officials from the airport and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) greeted the first passengers to use the new service following opening ceremonies today.
Mayor Villaraigosa said, "With the addition of Westwood, we truly have an example of an expanding transportation network that is connecting more parts of the region to Los Angeles' international gateway. LAX FlyAway encourages the use of high-occupancy public transportation, so that everyone benefits because traffic congestion and vehicle emissions are reduced over the entire region."
The new LAX FlyAway bus stop is located on university property on Kinross Avenue just north of Wilshire Boulevard and one block west of Gayley Avenue adjacent to UCLA Parking Structure 32. Parking for immediate drop-off and pick-up ONLY is available in Parking Structure 32.
The non-stop buses depart every 30 minutes on the hour and half hour from Westwood and LAX (both directions simultaneously), from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. There is no early morning service.
To encourage area residents, university students and staff, and employees of local businesses to try out the new service, the LAX FlyAway will be free in both directions from June 14-30, 2007. Beginning July 1, the fare at the FlyAway in Westwood, as well as at Van Nuys and Union Station, will be $4 one way for adults, $2 one way for children between 2 and 12 years, and free for children under 2 years. Tickets can be purchased on the bus. Exact fare in cash is required for payment.
"We promised Westside residents that we would work to reduce congestion on the highways and streets leading to LAX," said Los Angeles City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl, whose District 11 includes LAX. "This new FlyAway service will not only help to relieve traffic, but also will help to eliminate thousands of tons of emissions that pollute our air. And, this is just the beginning."
Los Angeles City Councilmember Jack Weiss, whose District 5 includes West Los Angeles, said, "Traffic congestion is the top concern on the westside, and encouraging transit use can help ease gridlock." He added, "The new FlyAway service will provide a convenient alternative for travelers, and I am proud to welcome the FlyAway to my district."
"Helping to reduce traffic congestion by providing alternative transportation has long been a priority for UCLA, so we're delighted to have FlyAway service on campus," said Administrative Vice Chancellor Sam Morabito, who oversees UCLA business functions including Transportation Services. "Not only will it benefit UCLA students, faculty and staff traveling to LAX, it also allows the campus to serve the larger community."
"The traveling public is demonstrating they enjoy the alternative that our FlyAway network provides them to reach LAX," said Gina Marie Lindsey, LAWA executive director. "We believe Westwood, like our Van Nuys and Union Station locations, will be very popular. Together, Van Nuys and Union Station already serve more than one million travelers and commuters each year."
Airport officials believe the Westwood site offers the potential to serve 167,000 passengers in its first year. Last month, airport and university officials established a one-year licensing agreement with two one-year renewal options to operate the Westwood service as a pilot program.
No overnight parking is permitted Monday through Thursday. Utilizing UCLA Parking Pay Stations, overnight parking for the LAX FlyAway is available on weekends from 3 p.m. on Friday until 7 a.m. on Monday in UCLA Parking Structure 32, and beginning July 1, in UCLA Parking Lot 36. The daily parking rate on weekend days is $6.
FlyAway buses drop off passengers at LAX on the Upper/Departures Level in front of each terminal. Passengers departing LAX are picked up on the Lower/Arrivals Level in front of each terminal under green signs marked "FlyAway, Buses, and Long Distance Vans."
Each 55-seat bus offers comfortable cushioned seats and head rests, curbside stops at each terminal, baggage handling assistance and optional airline and baggage check-in. The service complies with the requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act.
Los Angeles Airport Police officers ride the LAX FlyAway buses on a random basis and patrol the service locations. Bomb detection canine teams conduct periodic sweeps of the buses, service locations and luggage.
The Westwood location, like Union Station and Van Nuys, offers optional Airline and Baggage Check-in service. Passengers departing these locations for LAX can receive boarding passes and check-in luggage for most domestic flights to all 50 states. This service is not available to passengers on flights to international destinations, nor to the U.S. territories in the Caribbean and the Pacific.
The fee is $5 per passenger for airline and baggage check-in, and is in addition to the LAX FlyAway bus fare. The service is available from 4:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Travelers can check in two bags (each with a weight of 50 pounds or less) anytime on the day of travel, but at least three hours before their flight time. When riders arrive at their airline terminal, they can by-pass the lines at airline ticketing counters or curbside check-in and go directly to passenger security screening.
The expansion of the LAX FlyAway service to Westwood is part of LAWA's ground transportation initiative to expand its FlyAway bus system to improve passenger convenience, and to reduce traffic congestion and vehicle emissions by encouraging high-occupancy vehicle ridership. Westwood is the third site in a plan to have a total of nine LAX FlyAway locations throughout Southern California by 2015. It is also incorporated into Mayor Villaraigosa's Green L.A. Climate Action Plan To Reduce Global Warming. Expansion of the FlyAway bus service also is a requirement of the LAX Master Plan Mitigation and Monitoring and Reporting Program and one of the conditions of a settlement of lawsuits filed against the LAX Master Plan.
LAWA began operating the LAX FlyAway service from Van Nuys Airport in 1975, and the service from Union Station started operation in March 2006. Van Nuys served 805,000 passengers in 2006 and Union Station handled 253,000 passengers during its first year of operation.
Since the LAX FlyAway in Van Nuys began, it has served over 18 million riders and saved 370 million vehicle miles traveled in the region. The FlyAway at Union Station has served more than 318,000 riders since it began service. Union Station ridership is estimated to have saved more than five million vehicle miles, and $3 million in one-way drive-alone costs.
Further information on all LAX FlyAway routes is available by calling 1-866-I Fly LAX (1-866-435-9529) or by visiting http://www.lawa.org/flyaway.
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