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Wilshire to close for 22 weekends for Purple Line construction

The Red, Purple, Blue and Expo Lines meet at 7th Street/Metro Center Station in Downtown L.A.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
The Red, Purple, Blue and Expo Lines meet at 7th Street/Metro Center Station in Downtown L.A. Construction on the Purple Line Extension to Westwood will force the closure of sections of Wilshire Boulevard for 22 weekends starting in June, according to Metro.

A plan to shut down a portion of Wilshire Boulevard near the Miracle Mile for seven weeks was scrapped Monday in favor of spreading the closures over 22 weekends.

The work is part of the Purple Line Extension, which would extend the subway by nine miles, with seven new stations, from Wilshire and Western to Westwood.

Crews will install concrete decking from curb to curb to cover the street, so traffic can continue flowing while underground construction takes place below, according to Metro spokesman Dave Sotero.

"You can't tie up Wilshire Boulevard for the amount of time that would be necessary to build a station. That's just not feasible. So the next best thing is to put this temporary decking in place so that cars can continue to go back and forth on the street and we're able to work and build the station underground," Sotero told KPCC.

All the work up to now has been on relocating utilities and other preliminary activities. This will be the first major construction on the line, according to Sotero.

The closures will take place in three phases. The first, lasting for three weekends, will be between Detroit Street and La Brea Avenue, Sotero said.

The second phase will be a three-weekend closure at the intersection of Wilshire and La Brea. The final phase, between La Brea and Highland avenues, will last for 16 weekends.

The closures are set to begin sometime in June. Sotero said detour plans will be announced before then.

The Purple Line Extension will eventually connect downtown Los Angeles to Westwood.