Welcome to my annual feature about infrastructure benefiting me.
Yesterday, a new portal at Metro + the Bloc’s 7th Street Station opened to fanfare which you’ll have to read about elsewhere.
I actually wasn’t planning on taking the subway in, but rain altered my plans giving me the chance for fifty seconds of fun.
I probably missed the opening ceremony by an hour because there was still a large contingency of Metro guards and Starbucks puppeteers handing small samples of coffee in the vicinity.
They must get paid by the hour.
Most people approaching were a bit unsure what was going on.
Security was trying to shoo people in like De Niro trying to get Ray Liotta’s wife to try on dresses in Goodfellas with similar results.
The first thing I thought was the length of this passage was a lot shorter than I imagined.
I go to the LA Fitness a few times a week to get my shower on, so my perspective must have been skewed in my monitoring the last few months.
You’re already at subterranean ground level if that makes sense.
Part of the illusion is that this level of the mall is already submerged from 7th Street.
The other effect comes from the zig zaggy manner which you navigate this space.
You can see The District and toy store tucked back in there.
To the side of this disordered space, The District restaurant has sat patiently as one of the Bloc’s 2.0 first tenants waiting for the flow of customers to pass.
Over this extended period of time, you could say I tried this establishment out of pity for this delay.
You could also say I tried it because I like gastropub fare too (the food was quite good).
I know it’s drizzly, but can you find a humanoid at 11am?
What I didn’t expect was the little toy shop opening up behind it.
Kids and their things.
I took the often shut down escalator up to street level where things still looked status quo.
Barriers in the streets, bike parking non existent and still plenty of vacant storefronts.
I’m sure we’ll all call this a welcome addition someday as time will make us forget its $9.3 million price tag.
Nonetheless, it’ll probably shave a couple of seconds per day off my final leg into work, so there’s that.
Downtown is slowly becoming a better place to get around without a car, I just hope these improvements coalesce at some point.