Third District County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, flanked by several other Metropolitan Transportation Authority board members, joined Los Angeles area officials in Santa Monica Sept. 12 for a groundbreaking of Phase II of the Exposition Transit Corridor, known as the Expo Line.

The first phase of the Westside light rail project begins in downtown Los Angeles and, after several delays, is slated to open in November just east of Culver City. The second stage of the project will begin in Culver City and end at Fourth Street and Colorado Avenue in Santa Monica, with anticipated completion in 2015.

The light rail extension is expected to bring greater mobility to the region by connecting the Westside to the existing rail network, Metro officials say. The $1.5 billion project will include seven new stations at key destinations along the corridor, including two others in Santa Monica.

Joining Yaroslavsky, who represents Santa Monica and is the MTA board chair, at the groundbreaking were Expo Board Vice Chair and Santa Monica City Councilwoman Pam O’Connor, Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom, Los Angeles City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Second District County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas.