Flying out of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) might still be a drag, but getting there from Santa Monica might become a little less stressful, as the FlyAway bus service arrives in the coastal city on July 15, it was announced this week.
The Board of Commissioners voted in favor of the FlyAway service transporting LAX travelers through Santa Monica, according to a statement released June 16.
Also approved was a FlyAway bus route to Hollywood.
One-way fares for the FlyAway service to and from Santa Monica will be $8, according to the Los Angeles World Airports.
The June 16 vote officially forges an agreement between Los Angeles World Airports and Corinthian Ground Transportation, allowing the Santa Monica and Hollywood routs to be added.
FlyAway buses directly connects travelers to each LAX terminal.
According to airport officials, the FlyAway service between LAX and Santa Monica will be nonstop.
Passengers will be picked up by the FlyAway bus on east side of Main Street, just north of Pico Boulevard, at the Santa Monica Civic Center.
Service to and from Hollywood is expected to begin in mid-summer and connect LAX passengers to Vine Street near Hollywood Boulevard. The Hollywood route will include one stop at the Metro Red Line’s La Brea station.
In a released statement, Airport staff said operating costs for the FlyAway Santa Monica route is expected to be $730,000 in the first year (compared to $665,000 for the new Hollywood route).
An information item on the FlyAway service was presented to the Santa Monica City Council on Jan. 31. According to a memorandum from City staff to council members, an estimated two percent of LAX passengers begin their respective trips to the airport in Santa Monica. Of that population segment, about 65 percent of them begin their respective trip from Santa Monica to LAX from a hotel.
“LAWA believes the Santa Monica location can generate a sufficient number of airport passengers and airport employees to accomplish their goals for [traffic mitigation],” City staff told council members in January. “The Santa Monica area generates one of the greatest number of air passengers to LAX in the region, second only to concentration of hotels in the area immediately surrounding LAX.”
The FlyAway service is expected to have 18 daily trips between Santa Monica and LAX, according to City staff.
In addition to the upcoming FlyAway service, the Big Blue Bus also takes passengers between Santa Monica and LAX on Route 3 and Rapid 3. City staff stated the BBB service probably would not be impacted by the arrival of FlyAway in Santa Monica.
Interestingly enough, the parking lot likely to service the FlyAway stop does not offer long-term parking. The Civic Auditorium parking lot, which is adjacent to the FlyAway station, prohibits vehicles from being parked there for more than 72 hours. Accordingly, advertising for the new FlyAway station would indicate parking there is short-term only.
Beyond Santa Monica and Hollywood, other FlyAway stations are operational at Expo/La Brea, Union Station in Downtown Los Angeles, Van Nuys, and Westwood.