There is, to the best of my knowledge, only one retail space that is actually inside a subway station in the LA metro system. This unique retail space sits underground by the Hope Street entrance of the busy 7th/Metro subway stop (servicing the Red, Purple, Blue, and future Expo lines).
I’ve known about this retail space for years and imagined it being activated by some kind of “convenience store.” Many pedestrian-oriented cities in the world have metro stations that also have stores inside them. To me, it’s always been a sign of “urban maturity” that I wish LA would eventually have (i.e., becoming pedestrian-oriented and having businesses that cater to that demographic by setting up shop in places like metro stations, etc.).
So you can imagine how excited I was when I learned that a new business called “Rush” will be opening very soon inside this space at 7th/Metro. The owner of Rush Snack Bar, Andrew Cohen, told me this snack bar concept will have “a variety of fresh juices; All different types of pastries; Salads, sandwiches, sodas, chips and gourmet coffee.”
He continues by saying, “My idea of this concept is to do it in a very European manner. Very clean, fresh, and deliver a great product at a very inexpensive price. My potential customer is very diverse. My space is located in the financial district, which means I have the guy in a suit, I have the FIDM fashion student which is located a couple blocks from me, as well as your everyday worker. So I would really like to accommodate everyone, including people that aren’t even using the metro! Have some music playing with good vibes hoping every customer’s 1-2 minutes will be enjoyable and will return.”
According to Andrew, Rush Snack Bar is almost done building out and if all inspections go smoothly (crossing fingers) we could see it open by the end of this month (June). And I hope that somehow this sets a precedent for future metro stations in LA to include more retail and restaurant options inside (including Union Station becoming more of a destination in itself instead of just a transfer point).
Other subway stations with businesses that caught my eye…