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Tag Archives: Santa Monica Big Blue Bus

New to UCLA? Here Are Some Transit-Friendly Neighborhoods

"Los Angeles, USA - June 30, 2011: The Metro Gold Line train bound for Sierra Madre Villa station and east Los Angeles County departs the Chinatown Station."

UCLA Transit Map 2017With the Expo Line extension opening last year and the ongoing Purple Line extension project, taking transit to UCLA has been never easier.

Whether you're a new student or new employee looking to move closer to campus, we've created a map to show what areas around Westwood are most accessible to bus or rail stations. From the Santa Monica Big Blue Bus (BBB) to Culver City Bus (CCB) to several Metro bus and rail lines, there are many direct transit routes coming into campus every day. As an added bonus, we've also included the median rent prices for one-bedroom, one-bathroom units to further guide you.

Plus, UCLA Transportation subsidizes transit passes for six different agencies. The BruinGO! Flash Pass for BBB and CCB, for example, only costs $33 per quarter. And as a public transit rider, you'll be able to join the Bruin Commuter Club for even more benefits, like discounted daily parking for when you need to drive in and four hours of free Zipcar usage every month.

Need help planning your commute? Contact our Bruin Commuter Services team at or (310) 794-7433.


Big Blue Bus Launches NextBus Real-Time Arrival Info


bbbTired of waiting for your bus or wondering if you missed it? Santa Monica Big Blue Bus passengers can now track real-time arrivals on their mobile devices via NextBus, a web-based service that gives transit riders access to the specific location of their bus and predicted arrival time at their stop.

Big Blue Bus announced the release of NextBus arrival information last Wednesday. By logging on to NextBus' mobile-friendly site, commuters are able to find out if their bus is on schedule or delayed because of traffic, weather or construction. The NextBus app, however, is currently only available for Android devices. NextBus for iOS will be available for download from the App Store this summer.

For customers without smartphones, real-time data can be accessed by texting “SMBBB” followed by a space and the stop number to 41411, or by calling (310) 451-5444 at any time and entering the stop number.

Riding multiple lines? NextBus also provides real-time arrival information for UCLA’s BruinBus and Los Angeles Metro, and is able to determine what routes are in your area by utilizing your location.

bbb nextbus

5 tools every bus rider should be using


Thanks to recent technological advances, there are many new information tools that make public transportation easily accessible to all. Whether you are a regular rider, or just want to ride the bus for one day, these 5 tools can help you get on board!



NextBus provides you with real-time arrival information specific to your bus route.

How it works:

NextBus uses Global Position Satellite (GPS) technology, and advanced computer modeling to track the routes of buses and cars, taking into account the vehicle's actual position, intended stops, and typical traffic patterns. NextBus provides highly accurate bus arrival times. In addition, using your location, NextBus is able to determine and predict what routes are in your area and your arrival time. Once you have selected your criterion, the information is automatically displayed and updated every few seconds.

How to access it:

  • Internet
  • Smartphones, tablets and other wireless devices.
  • SMS Text
  • Phone call




Moovit is a mobile app (online website above) where users can plan trips, receive and share real-time public transportation information and easily navigate to their destination of choice.

How it works:

Information provided by Moovit is acquired through crowdsourcing. By riding with the app open, users anonymously share their public transit vehicle location and speed. This information is then combined with data gathered directly from transit agencies to provide users with better arrival times and route plans. You can also choose to actively contribute relevant status reports such as bus cleanliness, occupancy and any accidents that may cause a delay or change in routes.

How to access it:

  • Smartphone app
  • Internet


Google Maps - Transit

google maps-transit

Google Maps - Transit allows you to maneuver your way around the city with the help of public transportation. With this easy to use system, you can get personalized directions to any destination on any web device.

How it works:

Once you've entered your destination, you will receive several options that include the public transit lines availability,  average duration of the trip, operating time and frequency. You can view your route on the interactive map by clicking "Preview steps," you can also switch to Satellite view to familiarize yourself with the area. After selecting "More options and times" from the main map view, the Schedule Explorer will display the overall travel time for your route, including the time walking, time on transit and the transit lines used.

How to access it:

  • Smartphone app
  • Internet




Go511 is your one-stop source for bus, subway and train information in Southern California. Go511 can help improve your commute by keeping you informed even before you leave the house and while on the go as it is accessible through many channels.

How it works:

Information found in Go511 comes from a variety of traveler information sources such as; Caltrans and transit agencies from across its reporting area. The "Trip Planner" option allows you to find the best route for your trip, and the "Find a Transit Provider" tool allows you to find bus or train service near you. If you want information on a route, you can use of the "Transit Departure Times" option where you will find the next scheduled arrival times for your chosen bus line stop.

How to access it:

  • Smartphone app
  • Internet
  • Phone


Metro LA Alerts


Receive all of Metro, Los Angeles system alerts for bus and rail via twitter @metrolaalerts.  With Metro LA Alerts you'll be up-to-date with the most current reports on public transportation in your local area.

How it works:

Follow @metrolaalerts on twitter and receive transit updates on your feed.

How to access it:

  • Twitter app
  • Twitter website
  • SMS Texts

The Best Spots to see Fireworks accessible via Public Transit from UCLA


4th of July is almost here! And what a better way to partake in the festivities than to enjoy an amazing display of fireworks! Save yourself the stress of driving though holiday traffic and instead make use of public transit. Here are some of the best spots in town:


Grand Park, Downtown Los Angeles

Grand Park is housing the biggest rooftop fireworks display in downtown, and this year it is bigger and better than ever! Enjoy a day filled with music and food with all your friends and family at the 4th of July Block Party. The doors open at 1:00pm with two live stages performances at 4:00pm and its grand display of fireworks closing the show at 9:00pm. You are encouraged to bring your own picnic supplies and prepared food, however you'll also have the opportunity to enjoy the onsite food vendors. Make use of your valid TAP card and enjoy many discounts at selected nearby venues!

Address: 200 North Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Directions via public transit from UCLA

Time: Friday, July 4th, 2014 from 1:00pm-9:30pm. Fireworks show starts at 9:00pm

Cost: Free


Baldwin Hills Overlook, Culver City

If you are in search for the perfect seat to many of the fireworks displays for this 4th of July, then you want to head over to the Baldwin Hills Overlook. This place offers you a 360° view of every major fireworks show in LA. To get the best view, you will need to climb the stairs up to the top of the hill, find a cozy spot and get ready to enjoy the nighttime festivities. Be sure to bring blankets and chairs so that you may comfortably enjoy the show and the spectacular view from the top.

Address: 6300 Hetzler Rd. Culver City, CA 90232. Directions via Public transit from UCLA.

Time: Friday, July 4th, 2014. Fireworks usually start at around 9:00pm

Cost: Free


Marina Del Rey

If you are looking for some awesome seaside pyrotechnics, then you don’t want to miss the 2014 Marina del Rey 4th of July Fireworks Show. As a spectator, you can catch the display of fireworks synchronized to music in one of the popular viewing locations at Burton Chace Park. You may also enjoy the show from another popular viewing location at Fisherman’s Village. This spectacular display of fireworks will be launched from a floating barge located in the waters of the main channel between Fisherman’s Village and the Breakwater. To make travel around the marina easier, the Marina del Rey WaterBus will be operating from 11:00am to midnight and the beach shuttle will be running from 10:00am to 8:00pm on July 4th. Plan your day accordingly and arrive early so that you may enjoy a fun-filled day at the beach and grab a good seat to watch the fireworks extravaganza.

Address: Burton Chance Park, 13650 Mindanao Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292. Directions via Public Transit from UCLA.

Fisherman's Village, 13755 Fiji Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292. Directions via Public Transit from UCLA.

Time: Friday, July 4th, 2014 at 9:00pm

Cost: Free

Hansen Dam

Hansen Dam, Sylmar

Join hundreds of others at the annual San Fernando Valley Independence Day Celebration taking place at Hansen Dam. The 4th of July festivities will feature music, food, live entertainment and best of all, a magnificent display of fireworks! If you arrive early, you may also enjoy a nice swim in the community pool or swim lake, both available to the public during the day. Bring your picnic supplies and enjoy one of the best fireworks show in the San Fernando Valley.

Address: 11770 Foothill Blvd., Sylmar, CA 91342. Directions via Public Transit from UCLA.

Time: Friday, July 4th, 2014 from 10:00am-10:00pm. Fireworks will start at 8:30pm

Cost: Free


Warner Center Park, Woodland Hills

Join the 4th of July Fireworks Extravaganza at the Warner Center Park in Woodland Hills, and enjoy a day full of activities for the whole family. The festival will feature many food vendors, a play zone, a free concert and an amazing fireworks presentation.  Concert times will run from 6:00pm to 8:00pm and the fireworks display to live music will begin at 9:08pm. Don't miss out on a great opportunity to share the day with your loved ones and enjoy in the festivities this 4th of July.

Address: 5800 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Woodland Hills. Directions via Public Transit from UCLA.

Time: Friday, July 4th, 2014. Concert 6:00-8:00pm. Fireworks show will start at 9:08pm

Cost: Free


Rose Bowl, Pasadena

This year will mark the 88th annual Americafest, the 4th of July celebration at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. This all day festival will feature motorcycle stunts and special performances by Liverpool Legends and the Ultimate Beatles Experience. Festivities will commence at 2:00pm in the outside Area H of the stadium where families are invited to picnic or tailgate in the grassy areas. Food vendors, entertainment, crafts, exhibits and children’s rides will be available, as well as tours of the Rose Bowl stadium running from 2:30pm to 6:30pm on the hour. The day celebrations will culminate with the highly acclaimed "largest fireworks show in Southern California." This ultimate fireworks display is presented by Pyrospectaculars by Souza, who are known for their grandiose work on major festivities all around the world.

Address: 1001 Rose Bowl Dr., Pasadena, CA 91103. Directions via Public Transit from UCLA

Time: Friday, July 4th, 2014. Festival will run from 2:00pm - 9:30pm. Motorcycle stunts and performances at 7:00pm, fireworks show at 9:00pm

Cost: General Admission: $16.85. Reserved/VIP: $33.35. Children under 5 are free.


Hollywood Bowl, Hollywood

A July 4th tradition returns to the Hollywood Bowl, which hosts its annual Independence Day concerts on July 2-4, 2014. This year’s July 4th Fireworks Spectacular will feature Steve Martin, the Steep Canyon Rangers with Edie Brickell, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the U.S. Air Force Band of the Golden West. It is a great opportunity to enjoy a night filled with great music and entertainment as well as a sensational fireworks display. Make use of public transportation if you are planning on attending this event, to save money on parking and gas, and avoid the chaotic traffic.

Address: 2301 N Highland Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90068. Directions via Public Transit from UCLA.

Time: Friday, July 4th, 2014 at 7:30pm

Cost: $11.10-$137.60. Children 12 and under will receive a 50% discount.


UCLA celebrates 30 years of sustainable transportation


This year, UCLA Transportation is celebrating its sustainable transportation program – now 30 years strong! 2014 marks a three decade-long effort by UCLA Transportation to reduce traffic, improve air quality and offer economical and more enjoyable transportation options to UCLA students, staff and faculty. Whether through public transit options, vanpools, carpools, walking or biking, the University has paved the way in changing how people get to and from campus.

Here is a look back at history of our sustainable transportation programs and how they continue to change the way we think about our daily commute.


Smoggy LA

For decades, Los Angeles was known for having some of the worst air quality in the nation. Brown skies, smog alerts, and limited mobility options were the norm. In 1984, UCLA decided to be a proactive part of the solution.



1984: UCLA sustainability program begins

In preparation for the much anticipated traffic from the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles (and with UCLA designated an Olympic Village), UCLA Transportation began investing in alternative transportation programs. The first was the UCLA Vanpool Program, now 30 years strong with 154 vanpools on the road.


Shuttle Buses

1987: UCLA Transportation rolls out the Campus Express shuttle bus program

The Campus Express was created to provide efficient and timely transportation between key points on campus and to allow students, staff and faculty an alternative to using their own personal vehicles for short trips. In 2010, the Campus Express was renamed BruinBus. BruinBus shuttles currently transport nearly 1.3 million passengers each year.


TRip caps

1990: UCLA formally commits to reduce vehicle trips to campus

In 1990, UCLA signed an unprecedented Trip Mitigation & Monitoring Agreement with the City of Los Angeles to reduce traffic to and from campus.  Now, 24 years later, the UCLA employee drive-alone rate has dropped to nearly 50% (compared to approximately 73% for LA County commuters).



1998: Alternative fueled vehicle program starts

In the late 1990s, most University vehicles ran on unleaded gas or diesel fuel. Starting in 1998, UCLA Transportation made a commitment to change that trend. Today, 41% of UCLA's fleet operates on alternative fuels like compressed natural gas and electricity.



2000: Subsidized transit pass program begins

In 2000, UCLA Transportation began subsidizing rides on the City of Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus through its BruinGO! program. By 2008, the department was providing at least a 50% subsidy toward the cost of transit passes for six service providers: Big Blueu Bus, Culver CityBus, Metro, LADOT, Santa Clarita Transit and Antelope Valley Transit Authority.


Bike UCLA collage

2008: BruinBikes Program launched

In 2006, the UCLA Bicycle Master Plan declared in its mission to “improve cycling conditions and promote the bicycle as a transportation mode on, to and from campus.” With that in mind, the BruinBikes Program was launched in 2008. Additional bike racks, lockers, lanes and sharrows were added to the campus. The UCLA Bike Library was also created, which provides low cost bike rentals to students. In 2011, UCLA was designated a Bicycle Friendly University. And since 2006, the bicycling community on campus has more than doubled in size!


BCC Blog

2011: Bruin Commuter Club unveiled

The Bruin Commuter Club (BCC) provides access to products, services, information, benefits and incentives to UCLA employees and students who choose to use alternative forms of transportation to get to campus. Commuters such as transit riders, vanpool participants, bicyclists and walkers have access to benefits that include discounted parking, Metro Rewards and more. For further details on the program, click here.