Metro Monday – Downtown Koreatown

May 18, 2009 by Lisa Newton

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On Friday, with the sun already peeking through my window, I decided to go to Koreatown to get some good Kimchi, check out the sights, take some pictures, and do a little shopping.

There is certainly no shortage of good food, interesting people, architecture, appealing shopping malls, and scenes to enjoy and to take note of in Los Angeles, so I hopped on the Metro Rapid 728 which goes straight down Olympic Boulevard through the heart of Koreatown.

What is Metro Rapid?

Instead of me telling you, I’ll let the officials over at Metro explain:

Key Metro Rapid Attributes

  • Simple route layout: Makes it easy to find, use and remember
  • Frequent service: Buses arrive as often as every 3-10 minutes during peak commuting times
  • Fewer stops: Stops spaced about a ¾ mile apart, like rail lines, at most major transfer points
  • Level boarding/alighting: Low-floor buses speed-up dwell times
  • Bus priority at traffic signals: New technology reduces traffic delay at intersections by extending the green light or shortening the red light.
  • Color-coded buses and stops: Metro Rapid’s distinctive red color scheme makes it easy to identify Metro Rapid stops and buses
  • Enhanced stations: Metro Rapid stations provide information, lighting, canopies and “Next Bus” displays
  • Headway-based schedules rather than time-point-based schedules

Now, that you have a great understanding of Los Angeles’ Metro Rapid system, here’s my visit of Koreatown via the Metro 728 by way of Olympic Boulevard.

Olympic Boulevard

Here I stopped to shoot a picture looking East toward Downtown. As you can see, Koreatown is an combination of commerce, culture, cuisine, and cars.

Building Front

Home to a population of 340,000 and covering just under a 5-square-mile radius, Koreatown has the highest population density of all neighborhoods in Los Angeles. According to Forbes, Koreatown is ranked the 2nd Most Fuel-Efficient Neighborhood for 2008 and is considered one of the top walkable neighborhoods in the nation.


Even though Korean Americans are the largest ethnic group populating Koreatown, a large Hispanic population is also represented, with many of the Korean businesses hiring its Hispanic residents. This multiculturalism has caused a growth in Koreans who speak Spanish, and an increase in Hispanics who have learned Korean.


Before I headed home, I had to stop and have some amazing and delicious Korean food. This teaser picture is a precursor to an upcoming post about a fabulous local eatery I encountered there. So, hurry and subscribe to Travelin’ Local’s RSS feed to keep up-to-date to the latest Los Angeles and Southern California cool and unique happenings.

While Travelin’ Local here in Los Angeles, just hopping on the Metro, can take you, literally into another world.

And that’s what life’s all about.

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Related Posts with Thumbnails
Koreatown, Metro, SoCal

6 Responses to “Metro Monday – Downtown Koreatown”

  1. Kim says:

    It is amazing the culture that is a short bus ride away.. (so much like Long Island to NYC).. Cannot wait to see the local eatery you went too!

    Kim’s last blog post..Weekly Winners – The Over Kill Addition


  2. Melissa Donovan says:

    This is why I love America – you don’t have to travel far to experience different cultures.

    Melissa Donovan’s last blog post..Homophones: Weather and Whether


  3. David says:

    Nice Metro coverage–a really unappreciated, unused, unreal, unbelievably good bargain, useful, ubiquitous, and a great asset for both residents and visitors to Southern California.

    I am very much more and more, anti-automobile.

    Your take on Koreatown is spot on. I’ve spent more than a few times at the local eateries and the food is totally awesome.

    I can’t wait till your Restaurant experience there!


  4. Ralph says:

    Southern Cal looks so much like FL where I live. Great coverage! I look forward to visiting Cali soon. There is a growing Korean population here but not yet as large as you have out west.


  5. Lisa's Chaos says:

    Your food shot is just awesome!! I love how big cities have areas like this! Very cool!

    Lisa’s Chaos’s last blog post..Macro Monday: My favorite shape


  6. LisaNewton says:

    @ Kim I love having totally different cultures so close. It’s like having the world at your fingertips.

    @ Melissa Donavon The melting pot works…………:)

    @ David Even without my annual bus pass, the trip would only cost $1.25. A pretty good bargain in my humble opinion.

    @ Ralph I do see some similarities to FL here, but most are climate related, like the plants, etc. If you visit, please shot me an email. We can do lunch…………:)

    @ Lisa’s Chaos Thanks………..:)


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