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June 20, 2010
IF YOU GO For Amtrak schedules and reservations, call (800) USA-RAIL ([800] 872-7245) or Always high, prices for sleeper space are "yield managed," so they can vary considerably. Rooms are scarce in summer, so it's good to book early and be flexible. A tip about luggage. There's little convenient storage in any Amtrak sleeping accommodation, but Superliners do have a luggage alcove on the lower level, and, of course, bags can be checked. Best to take just an overnight bag to the room.
April 26, 2014 | By Lauren Beale
Updated and edgy, this multi-story house sits behind gates in Hollywood Hills West. Described by the design firm as a "transitional take on a classic Mediterranean," the home retains such characteristic details as interior and exterior wrought-iron railings, arched windows and a tile roof. Location: 1427 Queens Road, Los Angeles 90069 Asking price: $3.698 million Year built: 1937 Remodel: Bravia Design House size: Four bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms, 3,554 square feet Lot size: 5,882 square feet Features: Library, family room, breakfast area, kitchen island, hardwood floors, whole-house audio, terraces, outdoor living room with flat-screen TV, fountain-fed swimming pool About the area: Last year, 195 single-family homes sold in the 90069 ZIP Code at a median price of $2.25 million, according to DataQuick.
September 29, 2009 | Randy Lewis
Texas singer-songwriter Joe Ely has been in love with trains his whole life. In 1977, he recorded one of the great train songs -- "Boxcars," which his longtime pal Butch Hancock wrote -- laying out exactly what had hooked him over the course of countless rides in open freight cars journeying to and from his hometown of Lubbock. If you ever heard the whistle on a fast freight train Beatin' out a beautiful tune If you ever seen the cold blue railroad tracks Shinin' by the light of the moon If you ever felt a locomotive shake the ground I know you don't have to be told Why I'm going down to the railroad tracks And watch them lonesome boxcars roll "My grandfather worked the Rock Island line, and my father worked on the Santa Fe line," Ely, 62, said Sunday night following his performance at Burt's Tiki Lounge, about two blocks from the Albuquerque train station.
April 25, 2014 | By Larry Bleiberg
QUITO, Ecuador - As the four-car train rolls through the clouds and begins its descent of the Andes, Bette Bleeker has a practical concern. "I hope someone checked the brakes," the Chicago resident asks. It's a fair question, given the 1,755-foot descent we're about to make on the Devil's Nose, one of the steepest sections of railroad in the world. The historic route requires several switchbacks, including one length where the train reverses direction and heads backward as it gingerly stair-steps down the highlands.
July 30, 2000
I was surprised that the informative article by Michael R. Boldrick on Hetch Hetchy Reservoir ("Tapping Hetch Hetchy," Weekend Escape, July 9) did not mention the railroad that brought in supplies and workers to build the dam and reservoir. Interestingly, the present-day auto road to the dam site was built largely on the right of way of the old rails. HARVEY J. QUITTNER Los Angeles
August 12, 1991
The recent environmental accidents occurring during transportation of chemicals and the tragic rail accident occurring in South Carolina require a system-level approach to planning safe transportation that the industry has seemingly ignored. Some examples of safety improvements that could be taken by railroads: continuous monitoring of critical components (wheel bearings, brakes, etc.); coordinating surveys of rails to coincide with shipment of hazardous materials; improved real-time monitoring of rails and switches; real-time availability of hazardous materials cleanup teams; review of routes with respect to other train schedules to minimize the opportunity for hazardous loads or passenger trains being in an area at the same time.
September 20, 2012 | By Deborah Netburn
Apple has been taking it on the chin for what has widely been perceived as a failure of its homegrown Maps feature that replaced Google Maps in iOS 6. The Wall Street Journal's Walt Mossberg wrote  that the Maps app is the biggest drawback of the new iPhone, which only runs iOS 6, and that it a step backward from the Google Maps that came with previous version of iOS. PC Mag ran a story outlining six different ways that Google Maps...
June 9, 2012 | By Esmeralda Bermudez, Los Angeles Times
They weren't the most flattering addition to the neighborhood, and three years after the devastating Station fire the foothills of La Crescenta are bidding farewell to nearly half a mile of concrete barriers installed to guard against mudslides. The K-rails, as they're known, were put in place in La Crescenta and La Cañada Flintridge soon after the fire burned more than 160,000 acres, incinerating trees and shrubbery on hillsides that typically kept mud from spilling into homes during heavy rains.
January 30, 2005
Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley's swift filing of murder charges against Juan Manuel Alvarez in the Metrolink disaster (Jan. 28) may be another legal blunder, a la the Simpson murder trial. In California, a murder conviction must show "malice aforethought," or intent. The penal code defines such malice as "a deliberate intention unlawfully to take away the life of a fellow creature," or "an abandoned and malignant heart." By placing his car on the rails, Alvarez showed himself to be disturbed, deranged and reckless, but can it be proved beyond a reasonable doubt that he had malice toward the train passengers, or an intent to kill them?
June 12, 1989 | JAMES RISEN, Times Staff Writer
Maury Graham was a day laborer in his 50s with a wife, two kids and a bum hip that kept him from laboring very much. Hanging around their little house while his wife worked got old fast; thoughts of the open road started to prey on his restless mind. So one day he simply hopped a freight on the edge of town, fully expecting to come back to his wife, Wanda, in a few weeks. That was in 1971. Full-Fledged Hobo In 1981--10 years and thousands of Conrail miles later, mostly in a well-worn rail loop he followed from Iowa to Ohio--a full-fledged hobo called Steam Train picked up a phone in the Toledo rail yards and called Wanda.
April 19, 2014 | By Dan Weikel
Visibility was 10 miles and the morning sun had pushed the temperature close to 90 as Danny Joe Hall guided his mile-long Union Pacific freight train east through the grasslands of the Oklahoma Panhandle. Near the farming town of Goodwell, federal investigators said, the 56-year-old engineer sped through a series of yellow and red signals warning him to slow down and stop for a Los Angeles-bound train moving slowly onto a side track. The 83-mph collision killed Hall and two crewmen.
April 15, 2014 | By Laura J. Nelson
A nearly $1-billion contract to build a downtown subway that would close one of the most frustrating gaps in Los Angeles County's rail network should go to two companies with experience in local rail construction, according to a Metro report published Tuesday. The recommendation comes even though the firms were not the lowest bidders. In the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority analysis, staff members recommended awarding a $927-million joint contract to Skanska USA and Traylor Bros., two firms now building other regional rail projects.  The Downtown Regional Connector is a 1.9-mile, $1.46-billion underground link between rail lines that skirt opposite ends of L.A.'s downtown, one near Union Station and the other near Staples Center.
April 2, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
Nowhere in the Los Angeles area are trees more sparse than in South Los Angeles. City and county officials have been working for years in that part of town to create pastoral swaths of parks, greenbelts and even wetlands — fighting against drought, desert climate, urban blight and concrete streets — but it is a long, slow process. The City Council districts across South L.A. still have about half the canopy cover of the rest of the city. So it was troubling, back in 2012, that about 400 trees south of the 10 Freeway had to be cut down to allow the space shuttle Endeavour to lumber through the streets on its way to the California Science Center.
March 29, 2014 | By Laura J. Nelson
Los Angeles County voters could be asked in 2016 to fund a variety of transportation projects, including new rail lines and possibly a toll highway and rail line through the Sepulveda Pass. The tax proposal, announced by the advocacy group Move L.A., could raise an estimated $90 billion over 45 years and cost the average resident 25 cents to 30 cents a day, proponents said. It would also boost the countywide sales tax rate by a half-cent to 9½ cents on each dollar spent, though shoppers in cities with their own sales tax would pay higher rates.
March 14, 2014 | By Michael Muskal
The Metro-North Railroad, where at least five passengers and employees have been killed in less than a year, is plagued by shortfalls in safety operation, a stinging federal report said on Friday. The report, released by the Federal Railroad Administration after its 60-day review of procedures, castigated the commuter line for ineffective training, poor supervision of tracks and a dangerous emphasis on on-time performance over safety and maintenance. The line primarily serves suburbs north of New York City, including in Connecticut.
March 13, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
It might be sound reasoning, but a Supreme Court decision this week on an arcane legal-easement argument will likely have broad and regrettable consequences, particularly in the West, for the national movement to convert old railroad beds into bicycle paths. The case, Brandt vs. U.S., is rooted in the General Railroad Right of Way Law of 1875, through which Congress established a uniform approach to granting easements on government land so railroad companies could extend tracks through the heart of the still-developing country.
April 7, 1991
Kudos on your missive, "Romancing the Rails." Hopefully, there will later be one on famous military troop and supply trains. VAL RODRIGUEZ Signal Hill
April 2, 1989
I would like to express a contrary opinion to the March 19 article by A. J. Hand, "Shower Door Better Than a Curtain." Shower enclosures may look good and may present a watertight, cozy enclosure (if installed correctly) for the shower taker, but they are a nuisance to bath takers and tub cleaners: 1--If there are small children in a family, one cannot sit on the tub to bathe them because of the railing, but must kneel or crouch uncomfortably; 2--One cannot place a bath tray across the tub--the ledge has been narrowed by the railing; 3--The cleaner of the tub is prevented by the width of the shower doors from reaching the whole tub and must clean one side, shift the door, then clean the other; 4--The rails become filled with dirt and must be constantly cleaned out; the shower doors become coated with soap scum and one must go inside the tub to clean the glass.
March 11, 2014 | By Nardine Saad
Perhaps we'll be seeing less of Lena Dunham on screen in the future: The "Girls" talent says she might consider quitting acting to focus on some of her other work. But don't worry, she's not going far. "I don't know if I'm going to want to act anymore. I'm always relieved on the days I don't have to. I'd rather give parts to other women than be the woman having the parts," the Golden Globe-winning 27-year-old said in the April issue of Glamour, which hits newsstands March 18. Appearing in the critically acclaimed HBO series about four 20-something women growing up in New York isn't the only thing on her plate.
March 10, 2014 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court dealt a setback Monday to the popular redevelopment trend of transforming abandoned railroad lines into public bike paths, ruling that buyers of such lands are not required to continue granting a federal right of way. Legal experts said the decision would make it harder to build bike or hiking trails in areas of the West where railroads were often built on former federal land. In some instances, local governments may be forced to pay compensation to owners whose land is now crossed by bike paths or other government-built trails and parks.
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