The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) in the US is set to carry out $350m of modernisation works on the Blue Line.

Set to begin on 26 January, the upgrades aim to improve reliability, safety and passenger experience.

Metro Board chair and LA County supervisor Sheila Kuehl said: “The Blue Line is Metro’s first and oldest service line and it is critical that we update and improve service for Blue Line riders.

“These improvements certainly will cause some short-term pain but will also net important long-term gain, more convenience, easier connections, and safety and security upgrades for our Metro customers.”

“These improvements certainly will cause some short-term pain but will also net important long-term gain.”

The project will involve two four-month closures. Upgrade works will commence with the southern segment of the line, where services from the Blue Line 103rd St/Watts Towers Station to the Downtown Long Beach Station will be suspended from 26 January to late May.

Upon the completion of the southern section, modernisation works on the northern segment will start. During this time, operations between the Blue Line Compton Station and 7th St/Metro Center will be suspended from May to September.

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Works include improvements to the signalling, tracks and overhead wires of the Blue Line.

Multiple stations on the line will also be refurbished with interactive digital map displays, signage and other enhancements.

Four crossover tracks will be built to minimise service disruptions.

During the upgrade works on the line, Metro will provide additional bus shuttle services on the affected regions to reduce passenger inconvenience.