20 Aug 2014
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What the Red Line Station Could Have Looked Like [Video]

Until a change in public policy in the late 1980s, the NoHo station was initially designed to have a more ordinary looking entrance.

What the Red Line Station Could Have Looked Like [Video]

It's been 12 years since the Metro Red Line station in North Hollywood opened as a part of the city's emerging rail system. But long before those big arches were anchored above its entrance, initial plans intended to keep things a bit more basic.

Earlier this week, the Metro Library and Archive uploaded a 1983 rendering to its website that depicts the station's entrance as a set of doors on the side of an office building.

The image was created by the now defunct Southern California Rapid Transit District as part of an environmental study into having a rail run through NoHo.

But at the urging of the Federal Transit around the late 1980s, cities around the country started adopting policies allowing cities to set aside a fraction of transit funding for implementing art at public transportation hubs.

"'Art for Rapid Transit' had become eligible for federal funding, up to 2 percent of capital costs could be devoted to public art on rail projects to ensure new projects would be community assets, attractive, and reflective of local history and culture," said Matthew Barrett, administrator of policy research and library services at Metro.

The Los Angeles County Transportation Commission adopted a 0.5 percent Art in Rapid Transit Policy.

For rail systems already under construction downtown, their art displays had to wait. But in the case of the NoHo station, planning for the arches and the underground artwork began at day one, Barrett said.

"In stations scheduled to be built in later segments and having the advantage of time post policy adoption, there was sufficient time to hold community meetings, assemble advisory groups, select artists to work with the community and architects, and incorporate public art and design into the architecture of the stations," he said.

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