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Redondo Beach-Del Rey Line

ROUTE: From Hill St. Station to Culver City Station this line followed the Venice Short Line's route. At Culver Junction the line diverged to the left and headed in a straight line on private way to the ocean at Playa Del Rey. Thence, it proceeded south along the coast through cities of El Segundo, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, and Redondo Beach to a terminus at Cliffton. HISTORY: From Culver City to Playa del Rey the line was built in 1902 as a double track, narrow gauge electric line. From Manhattan Beach to Redondo, built 1903 and the three-mile gap between Playa Del Rey and Manhattan was closed later that year, entailing heavy grading. This line was standard gauged in 1908.

PE took over this line from LAP in 1911 and operated it until abandonment on May 12, 1940. Trackage between Culver City and Alla was retained for freight use.

OPERATION: As of July, 1911, a total of 30 round trips were run. These were on a 30-minute headway days, 60 minute evenings. Running time from Hill St. Station to Redondo was 63 minutes.

As of June 21, 1919, 40 minute base headway was offered, with 30 minute headway in rush hours and hourly service during evening hours with last car leaving Hill St. Station at 11:30 PM.

By November, 1926, 15 minute outbound service was provided at evening rush periods, and a limited train in the evening rush hour appeared for the first time.

As of May, 1931, two evening limiteds were in service daily except Sunday, leaving Hill St. Station at 4:55 and 5:14 PM. There were now 24 outbound trips weekdays, 22 on Saturday, 22 inbound trips daily except Sunday, and 20 round trips Sunday.

Late in 1932 service was slightly cut, with 17 Sunday round trips. 20 outbound trips on Saturday and inbound daily except Sunday, and 22 outbound Monday to Friday. Night service went on a 90 minute headway.

On May 4, 1936, two morning inbound limiteds were added for the first time; these left Cliffton at 6:32 AM and 7:26 AM.

On January 15, 1940 or shortly before, Redondo-Del Rey cars were ordered to do all local work between Hills St. Station and Vineyard after 7:00 PM and all day Sunday.

A local service was offered in the early years between Manhattan Beach and Redondo. This was first established on July 25, 1916 but was discontinued on October 1, 1916. This was later reestablished and by March 1, 1922, was quite well patronized. As of April 1, 1922, this local service offered, when combined with Los Angeles schedules, a 20 minute base and 30 minute evening service both south of Manhattan. Three of these locals ran to El Segundo. On January 1, 1923, all locals were extended to Cliffton. All those locals were discontinued on June 1, 1924.

From Culver City to the ocean, this line's area was sparsely developed; a few homes lined the bluffs at Playa del Rey. but from there to Manhattan Beach there was little but sand and water. Manhattan and the adjoining beach cities were quite well developed.

The line also was handicapped by a severe traffic congestion in Los Angeles; due to its longer length (25.39 miles), the relationship between the time required to traverse the business district was somewhat less than that for the Venice Short Line---15% of the time to cover 2.7% of the route.

As of 1939 a schedule speed from 23.4 mph maximum to 17.5 mph minimum was in effect with a running time ranging from 65 to 87 minutes.

The route of this line did not begin to follow the most direct course between beach cities and downtown Los Angeles. Highway construction brought direct routes into being and despite much private right of way, this line could not match automobiles in speed.

EQUIPMENT: From 1911 to 1940, 800 Class cars served this line; in 1911 and for a few years thereafter, some 500 Class cars also were assigned. Certain schedules required 1300 Class combination passenger-baggage cars.

TRACK: From Hill St. Station to Culver Junction., see W. 16th St. Line and the Venice Short Line. From Culver Junction. to Ballona Creek, outbound track was 60 lb. T-rail, redwood ties, gravel ballast; inbound was 75 lb. T-rail, otherwise same. Bridge over Ballona Creek to Del Rey, outbound and inbound differed as above; from del Rey to Hermosa Beach, both tracks were 75 lb. T-rail on redwood ties and sand ballast; in Hermosa Beach(Pacific Ave.) 128 lb. girder rail, treated ties, rick ballast, asphalt pavement were used; from Hermosa to 12th St., Redondo, 75 lb. T-rail, redwood ties and sand ballast; from 12th St. to Diamond Ave., 75 lb. T-rail, treated ties, rock ballast, macadam paving; Diamond Ave. to Pearl St., 72 lb. T-rail, redwood ties and gravel ballast, macadam pavement; Pearl St. to to Ave "A", 70 lb. T-rail, redwood ties, gravel ballast, macadam pavement; Ave "A" to Cliffton, 60 lb. T-rail, redwood ties and sand ballast.

ELECTRICAL FACILITIES: This line used the same substations as the Venice Short Line as far as Culver Junction. It then had Substation 41 at Playa del Rey and Substation 42 at Hermosa Beach.

CAR STORAGE: Out of service equipment was stored at Hill St. Station (17 cars), Vineyard(34), Redondo Beach(7), and Cliffton (10). Minor repairs could be made at Redondo Beach.

FREIGHT: Freight service was relatively light; in 1935-36-37 this line turned in a average freight revenue per mile of line of but $602. Of the line's annual total of 209 cars at that time, 159 were obtained from Alla, also served by the Inglewood Line; 47 loads came from Redondo, the balance from Playa del Rey. Alla was quite a produce center, del Rey was mainly building materials, and Redondo provided general merchandise.

PASSENGERS: (Fare & Transfer)
YearPassengersCar MilesRevenue

MISCELLANEOUS: Chief selling point of this line from a tourist standpoint was its mileage of ocean beach running; cars ran within a stone's throw of the cool green breakers, and from Hermosa Beach to Cliffton the cars were within a block of the sand.

Connection was made at del Rey with the Lagoon Line which carried beach visitors up to Santa Monica.

As did the Venice Short Line, so the Redondo via del Rey line showed a good upturn in patronage during hot beach weather; it was commonplace to behold three-car trains speeding down the coast to Redondo in the Twenties on warm days; seldom did patronage require more than two-car trains at other periods.

Hill Street Station:0.00 miles
Culver Junction:9.18 miles
Playa del Rey:14.95 miles
Manhattan Beach:20.53 miles
Hermosa Beach:22.21 miles
Redondo Beach:24.00 miles
Cliffton:25.01 miles

Two early day speedways brought a good bit of additional patronage to this line. The Motordrome was established a mile inland from Del Rey, while the Culver City Speedway was located near MGM Studios.

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