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News / Transport & Travel

The names of L.A.'s Metro stations and bus lines are now up for sale

Metro bus
Photograph: Steve Hymon, Courtesy Metro

Driving on the freeway or the streets of L.A., Angelenos are bombarded by billboards advertising the latest and greatest. Then there are brands who advertise by simply attaching their names to buildings; Staples Center and Microsoft Theater, for example (as though we're ever thinking about computers and office supplies as we're going to see the Lakers play or our favorite band perform). If all that corporate advertising wasn't already at ridiculous levels, now you might be boarding Metro at Snapchat Station. 

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has approved a policy that puts the names of almost every aspect of L.A.'s transportation system up for sale, including bus lines, Metro stations, parking garages and ticketing machines. There are some limits as to who is allowed to purchase the names—tobacco, alcohol and adult entertainment companies are barred, so there go our dreams of boarding the Evolution Erotica Bus. Political and religious groups are also barred. 

So is MTA selling out? Sure, that's one way to think of it. But officials are okay with that if it means keeping fares low. "I was never really in favor of advertising on buses or some of the other things we've done. But I am less in favor of fate hearings," John Fasana, chairman of the Metro board, told the L.A. Times

There's no telling how much cash the program will bring in since each deal will be negotiated separately—and we've gotta wonder who will want to pay good money to name a ticketing machine. 

If you had some extra cash, what would you name your favorite Metro station or bus line? Let us know in the comments below.

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Joe S

Oh god I hate this idea. I hope the idiot who floated this idea to sell off naming rights on PUBLIC transit lines gets fired.

Joe S

I hate this.