Lines to/from the Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor

The Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor resulted from a struggle among the three major railroads in Los Angeles in the early 20th century to establish a location of its choice as the major port in the area. Southern Pacific’s long pier at Santa Monica and Santa Fe’s harbor at Redondo Beach both lost out politically to facilities in the area around Terminal Island between San Pedro and Long Beach. Union Pacific predecessor San Pedro, Los Angeles & Salt Lake was the big winner in this political struggle, since it owned most of the facilities and local access in that area. Its win turned out to be even greater when oil was discovered on Terminal Island, since it owned not only the land but the mineral rights on the whole island and much of the surrounding area.

Once the decision on locating the harbor was settled, all three railroads had to have lines to the harbor. Santa Fe developed its by building an extension from its existing line to Redondo Beach that split off from that line in El Segundo and headed to a new yard at Watson, just north of the harbor area in Wilmington. Union Pacific continued to use its San Pedro branch, heading south from Hobart Tower, which provided direct access to all of the harbor area facilities.

Southern Pacific had two lines to the harbor area: a ‘steam’ railroad down Alameda Street and the Pacific Electric line south of downtown LA, through Watts. After the cessation of passenger service on the Pacific Electric line to Long Beach in 1961, SP operated these two lines as if they were parts of a single operational facility. The Alameda Street line was known as the “SP side” and the former PE line as the “PE side”. Both lines were capable of taking trains from the harbor to SP’s yards in downtown Los Angeles, and both had branches heading east from locations south of downtown that allowed trains to reach SP’s City of Industry yard without passing through the congested downtown areas.

These routes cover the following subdivisions:

Santa Fe Harbor Line

The ATSF Harbor Subdivision splits away from the line toward Los Angeles Union Station at Redondo Junction, on its south side, maximum speed 12 mph, crosses Harriett Street at grade, and then turns due south between warehouses and other industrial buildings. It crosses 25th, 26th, 27th, 28th, 37th and 38th Streets in Vernon, Vernon Avenue, Pacific Boulevard, 49th Street, Fruitland Avenue, and 52nd, 53rd, 54th, 55th 56th and 57th Streets at grade. South of the latter, at the yard at Malabar (MP 1.5), the track starts to curve towards the west, crossing 58th Street and Santa Fe Avenue in the process, and comes along the north side of Slauson Avenue, heading due west. It now crosses 2nd Street in Vernon, enters Los Angeles again and crosses the SP Vernon Line at grade at Nadeau (MP 2.5), where the maximum speed is 10 mph and Track Warrant Control starts, and Alameda Street and Holmes Avenue at grade. The line then crosses the SP Amoco Line at grade at SP crossing (MP 2.8), where the maximum speed has risen to 15 mph, passing under the Blue Line bridge at the same location.

Continuing west, the line crosses Compton Avenue, Naomi Avenue, Central Avenue, McKinley Avenue, Paloma Avenue, Avalon Boulevard, Towne Avenue, San Pedro Street, Main Street and Broadway at grade, passing soignals at Wingfoot (MP 3.5) and Wildasin (MP 6.0) along the way. Interstate 110 passes overhead on its concrete bridge, and the line then crosses Figueroa Street, Hoover Street, Vermont Avenue, Budlong Avenue, Normandie Avenue and Denken Avenue at grade. Angling west-southwest, the line crosses Slauson Avenue itself at grade, then cutting across residential areas, crossing Western Avenue, passing signals at Van Ness (MP 7.3), crossing Van Ness Avenue, 4th Avenue, 6th Avenue, 11th Avenue, 67th Street, Crenshaw Boulevard, Victoria Avenue, Brynhurst Avenue and West Boulevard at grade.

Entering Inglewood, the line crosses Redondo Boulevard, Centinela Avenue, La Brea Avenue, Ivy Avenue, Eucalyptus Avenue, Cedar Avenue, Oak Street, and Hyde Park Boulevard at grade, with signals at Hyde Park (MP 8.0) and Inglewood (MP 9.9). The line then turns due west and crosses I-405 on a through girder bridge sandwiched between two concrete bridges. After crossing La Cienega Avenue and Hinday Avenue at grade, the line turns due south, crossing Manchester Avenue at grade in the process, then crossing Arbor Vitae Street at grade. Entering Los Angeles again, and running adjacent to Los Angeles International Airport (to the west) and Aviation Boulevard (to the east) the line rises on a concrete bridge to pass over a parking lot entrance and then Century Boulevard, descending to cross road entrances to airport facilities across from 104th Street and 111th Street at grade, then crosses Imperial Highway at grade as it passes under the I-105 bridges and the Green Line bridge.

There are industrial facility grade crossings at Northrop Gate 3, the 4,962 ft. siding at Lairport (MP 13.6), where the maximum speed has risen to 20 mph, starts across from 114th Street, and there are more industrial facility grade crossings along the siding at Northrop Gates 4 (120th Street) and 5. South of the siding, the line rises toc ross El Segundo Boulevard on a concrete bridge, then turns away south-southwest from Aviation Boulevard, crosses the ex-SP El Segundo line on a diamond (15 mph on the crossing) at SP Crossing (MP 14.6), crosses Douglas Avenue at grade, and has a wye with the Chevron refinery oil tank sidings at the junction where the line down to Redondo Beach ran until the early 1980s. On its east leg of the wye, the Harbor sub. turns southeast, comes briefly under the overhead structures carrying the Green Line’s Douglas Avenue station, and then climbs onto a through truss bridge to cross the intersection of Aviation Boulevard and Rosecrans Avenue adjacent to the slender Green line bridge there.

Now in Hawthorne, the line continues southeast across Marine Avenue and Inglewood Avenue at grade, turns due south crossing Manhattan Beach Boulevard in the process, enters Lawndale (yard, MP 16.6) and crosses 159th, 160th, 161st, 162nd and 170th Street at grade. The line enters Redondo Beach and crosses Artesia Boulevard and Grant Avenue on bridges, and crosses 182nd Street at grade. There are signals at Dudmore (MP 19.1). It then turns southeast into Torrance and crosses Hawthorne Boulevard and 190th Street on adjacent through-girder bridges. In an area of industries and petrochemical refineries, the line passes under Prairie Avenue. At Alcoa (MP 20.1), a spur track diverges due east to run alongside Del Amo Boulevard to a point east of Western Avenue. Alcoa is also the start of a 7,900 ft. siding to Torrance (MP 21.7). The line passes over Crenshaw Boulevard on a concrete bridge, turns due south and crosses Torrance Boulevard at grade. Running between two segments of Madrid Avenue in a secluded residential area, the line crosses a pedestrian grade crossing at El Dorado Street and crosses Sonoma Street and Carson Street at grade.

South of the latter, near a location called Ironsides (MP 23.3), the line turns southeast again, crossing Washington Street, Arlington Avenue, Cabrillo Avenue, Border Avenue and Sepulveda Boulevard at grade. There is a bridge over Western Avenue as the line enters Los Angeles (the strip connecting the city to the port at San Pedro). And a pair of bridges over the former right-of-way of a Southern Pacific branch south from Torrance and the immediately adjacent Normandie Avenue, in Carson. The line now turns due east and passes under Vermont Avenue and I-110 before crossing Figueroa Street at grade. It then passes over Main Street on a bridge and crosses Avalon Boulevard at grade. Turning southeast, the line crosses Broad Street, East Street and Wilmington Boulevard at grade.

At Watson (MP 26.6), the line splits into two, one leg turning east to run along the north side of Lomita Boulevard to Rolling Junction (MP  27.1), where one leg once went straight ahead to the SP line at Alameda Boulevard and the other still extant leg turns southeast to join the PHL Alameda Corridor and/or Long Beach line at West Thenard (MP 27.6) The other line at Watson turns south, crossing Lomita Boulevard at grade and joins up with an east leg of the wye that also crosses Lomita Boulevard at MP 26.2x. This line head due south to Watson Yard (MP 27.0x) and an end-on connection with the PHL at G Street (MP 28.0x), crossing under Pacific Coast Highway and crossing L Street, Denni Street, Grant Street and Anaheim Street at grade in the process. From the latter, its MP 0.0,, the Harbor Belt Line's single track Yard Limits line connects through McFarland (MP 0.6) to a connection with its San Pedro line at Transfer Junction (MP 1.2).

Union Pacific Harbor Branch

The UP San Pedro Subdivision's single track initially within Yard Limits, leaves the UP Los Angeles subdivision on a wye at Downey Road (MP 2.8), west of East Yard. Both legs of the wye cross Washington Boulevard on concrete bridges, after which the single track line crosses the BNSF San Bernardino subdivision on a diamond at San Pedro Junction, MP 3.1, (formerly controlled by Hobart Tower on the northwest corner of the diamond) and crosses 26th Street, Vernon, at grade, after which, at MP 3.2, connections from the BNSF line trail in to permit BNSF access to industries in Vernon served by the Los Angeles Junction Railway off this line. There is a crossing with the LAJ at MP 3.6, just on the south side of the bridge across the Los Angeles River.

Downey Road runs along the west side of the line as far as Slauson Avenue. Along this stretch, the line crosses Bandini Boulevard at grade, crosses the LA River on a girder bridge immediately preceding the LAJ diamond, and then crosses Charter Street, Exchange Street, District Boulevard, Fruitland Avenue and Slauson Avenue at grade. At MP 5.1, the line crosses the La Habra sub. at grade, followed immediately by crossing Randolph Street, Huntington Park, at grade. There are signals protecting the diamond both north and south. South of this location, operational control switches to Track Warrants, issued by the joint LA Area dispatching office in San Bernardino. The line crosses Gage Avenue and Bell Avenue at grade. South of Gage, Salt Lake Avenue runs along the west side of the line, which slowly curves from south to southeast.

There are signals at Bell (MP 5.4), the line crosses Florence Avenue at grade, and a second segment of Salt Lake Avenue starts running along the east side of the track to go with the first segment on the west side. There are grade crossings at Otis Avenue and Santa Ana Street in Cudahy. At the latter, the western segment of Salt Lake Avenue ends.  There is lineside industry with many tank cars on the west side of the line south of Santa Ana Street. There is a grade crossing at Ardine Street, a diamond with the Los Nietos sub. at MP 7.4, adjacent to Patata Street (which does not cross the line, but does end Salt Lake Avenue’s presence on the east side of the line), and a grade crossing of Atlantic Boulevard, South Gate, immediately south of the diamond.

The line crosses Firestone Boulevard at grade, as it turns south-southeast, followed by Rayo Avenue and Southern Avenue.  There is another short segment of Salt Lake Avenue alongside to the west, after which the line crosses the Los Angeles River on a long multi-span through-truss bridge, passes underneath I-710, and then crosses the Rio Hondo on a two-span girder bridge and turns due south. There are signals at Workman  (MP 9.3) and grade crossings of Imperial Highway, Garfield Avenue, Gardendale Street, Main Street, and a minor segment of Century Boulevard. Immediately south of the latter, the line enters Paramount and crosses over I-105 on a concrete bridge that also spans the MTA Green Line in the freeway median.

South of I-105, the line crosses the now empty right of way of the former Pacific Electric line from Watts to Santa Ana, part of which is now overlaid by I-105 itself. The UP branch then crosses Rosecrans Boulevard, Somerset Boulevard and Jefferson Street at grade. There is a 5,915 ft. siding from Paramount (MP 12.5) to Rioco (MP 13.8), and in this span there are many tank cars parked at lineside industries on both sides of the line. The line runs through an industrial area, with street access only at the major street crossings at intervals of a mile (or half mile, in some places). The line passes over Alondra Boulevard on a bridge. Entering Long Beach, the line passes under Route 91 and crosses Artesia Boulevard and South Street at grade. At Douglas Junction, the San Pedro sub. turns west-southwest while the Lakewood Industrial Lead continue straight ahead for 2.8 miles to its end near the Boeing (former Douglas Aircraft) manufacturing facilities at the west side Long Beach Airport. Both lines cross Market Street at grade within the same road crossing facilities.

The San Pedro sub. crosses over Cherry Avenue, Orange Avenue, Atlantic Avenue, Del Amo Boulevard, and Long Beach Boulevard on overhead bridges. It crosses over the Los Angeles River on a multi-span through girder bridge, there is a private grade crossing on the west bank of the river, the line passes under the elevated structure carrying the Blue Line tracks overhead, crosses the road entrance to the Blue Line Shops at grade and crosses over the Long Beach Freeway (I-710) on a multi-span through girder bridge. The line crosses Dominguez Street and Carson Street at grade, turning south-southwest in the process, passes over Santa Fe Avenue on a bridge, under I-405, and across Wardlow Road at grade.

With high sound walls to its east (and west, at least for part of the way), the line turns due south alongside the former Southern Pacific ICTF to the west of the line. There are signals at Carson (MP 17.7, the line crosses over Willow Street on a through truss bridge, and the Track Warrant Control that has persisted since the La Habra sub. crossing ends in favor of Yard Limits at Manuel (MP 19.2). The Terminal Island Freeway (Route 103) runs alongside to the east as the line passes through a floodlit area.

The line passes under Pacific Coast Highway; there are signals and a right-hand crossover between the two tracks at Thenard Connection (MP 21.6), the line curves west towards the Dominguez Channel, turns west-southwest along the east side of that channel and crosses the SP Long Beach Line at MP 21.7. The line then passes beneath the Anaheim Street overbridge and connects with the west end of Mead Transfer (MP 22.1). Beyond Mead Transfer, the line continues to its junction with the SP Vernon Line at Henry Ford Boulevard (MP 23.2), coming adjacent to the east side of that line as it does so.

The "PE Side" (SP Amoco Line)

The SP Amoco Line (the “PE side”) sees considerable traffic to Torrance and El Segundo, including the Robertson Ready Mix rock train to Hawthorne and tank cars to and from the Chevron Refinery in El Segundo, all of which must travel over the northern part of the Wilmington line, as well as acting as one side of the paired tracks to the harbor area. The line starts out adjacent to the J Yard (MP 484.9), just west of Redondo Junction, Double Track, current-of-traffic, Direct Traffic Control, maximum speed 10 mph, and heads due west across Alameda Street at grade, crossing the Vernon Line at grade at Amoco (MP 485.6), turns southwest, crosses 24th Street at grade, turns due south, crossing the eastern side of Long Beach Avenue in the process, and comes along the east side of the Metro Blue Line in between the two halves of Long Beach Avenue. There are numerous signals along the stretch from east of Alameda Street to the crossing of Long Beach Avenue, along with a detector at MP 486.1.

For the next several miles, as far as Slauson Avenue, the line runs along the east side of the Blue Line light rail tracks, crossing 41st Street, Vernon Avenue, and 45th Place at grade in the same crossings as the Blue Line, passing under a pedestrian bridge at 54th Street, and crossing 55th Street at grade. North of Slauson Avenue, the Blue Line tracks rise up on an elevated section, which will descend on the east side of the Wilmington subdivision tracks, south of Slauson Junction. The line comes alongside the Blue Line tracks until just north of the ATSF Harbor Line diamond on the north side of Slauson Avenue. The south end of this siding is under the Blue Line elevated track structure at Slauson Avenue.

The line crosses the ATSF Harbor Subdivision on a diamond (MP 487.4) signaled as part of the Slauson Junction complex, and then crosses Slauson Avenue at grade. Immediately south of the street, the north leg of the Slauson Junction wye turns east (MP 487.5), and a little further south, the south leg of the wye joins from the east, comprising the connection with the Walker Line, where the maximum speed rises to 25 mph. Now on the west side of the Blue Line, the Amoco Line crosses 60th Street, Gage Avenue, and Florence Avenue at grade. There is a pedestrian overbridge at 75th Place, and a grade crossing at Nadeau Street. There is a signal bridge (Nadeau, MP 488.7) just south of Nadeau Street, after which the line crosses Firestone Boulevard on a bridge, and the Double Track reduces to single track at Vargas (MP 488.9). There are grade crossings at 92nd Street, Century Boulevard, and 103rd Street. From Florence Avenue to Nadeau Street, and again from Firestone Boulevard to Century Boulevard, Graham Avenue runs along the east side of the various lines. There is a 15,259-foot siding (named “Slauson”) from the south end of the Slauson Junction complex to Slauson Siding (MP 489.0) at the north end of the Watts junction area, again giving the appearance of having double track through the area, with a yard at Graham Yard (MP 489.7).

The old Pacific Electric depot at Watts still exists on the east side of the line (actually, east of the Blue Line) immediately south of 103rd Street. There is a pedestrian overbridge at 104th Street. The El Segundo Industrial Lead leaves the line and turns away to the west at Watts (MP 490.8), just south of the 103rd Street road crossing. Also at this location, the Pacific Electric line towards Santa Ana used to depart towards the southeast, along a right of way that still exists, shorn of track, in the immediate vicinity of Watts and for much of its length. From 103rd Street south, Willowbrook Avenue runs alongside the lines to the east. The line crosses 108th Street and Wilmington Avenue at grade, and then passes underneath the Imperial Highway overbridge. DTC ends at Abila (MP 491.3).

A second segment of Willowbrook Avenue runs along the west side of the tracks all the way to Greenleaf Boulevard. The line crosses 119th Street, 124th Street, El Segundo Boulevard, 130th Street, Stockwell Street and Rosecrans Avenue at grade, mostly in the same crossing as used by the Blue Line. There are signals to the north of Rosecrans Avenue, underneath another section of Blue Line elevated track. The line crosses Elm Street, Compton Boulevard (Compton, MP 495.7), Myrrh Street and Alondra Boulevard at grade. There is a pedestrian overbridge at Caldwell Street, and a grade crossing at Greenleaf Boulevard. The line then passes beneath the Route 91 bridges, crosses Manville Street at grade, and joins with the Vernon Line at Dominguez Junction (MP 496.5).

SP Walker Line

The SP Walker Line leaves the Patata Line at DT Junction (MP 501.7) in Santa Fe Springs, using a balloon track (because there is no space on the river bank for the west leg of a wye) to turn west-northwest (in a direct linear continuation of the line taken by the Los Nietos branch as it passes under I-605 and the Brea Chemical Industrial Lead east of that) at Los Nietos (MP 501.0), where Direct Traffic Control starts. The line crosses the San Gabriel River into Pico Rivera on a multi-span through-girder bridge immediately west of DT Junction. There is a signal (Burke, MP 405.0) east of Passons Avenue, the line crosses Passons Avenue, Serapis Avenue, Rosemead Boulevard (Pico Rivera, MP 494.4) and Paramount Boulevard at grade before crossing the Rio Hondo on a multi-span through-girder bridge into Commerce (MP 492.9). Crossing Telegraph Road at grade, the line then passes under I-5, crosses Gage Avenue at grade and turns almost due west, with the 3,621 ft. siding at Walker (MP 492.1). Passing through the industrial area of Commerce, with the trackage of the Los Angeles Junction Railway to the north (Junction Transfer, MP 491.2), the line crosses Greenwood Avenue and Garfield Avenue at grade. Entering Bell Gardens (with Commerce and the LAJ just to the north side of the line), the line crosses Eastern Avenue at grade and then crosses I-710 and the Los Angeles River on multi-span through-girder bridges.

Entering Bell, and running along the north side of Randolph Street (with another segment of Randolph Street to the north side of the line as far as Maywood Avenue, the line crosses Alamo Avenue, Heliotrope Avenue, King Avenue, Atlantic Boulevard, and Flora Avenue at grade, followed by Gifford Avenue, Maywood, Carmelita Avenue and Maywood Avenue at grade. There is a signal facing east just to the east of Maywood Avenue, protecting the diamond crossing with the UP San Pedro line (MP 490.0) just west of that street. There is a west-facing signal west of that diamond, followed by a grade crossing of Boyle Avenue. Here, Randolph Street splits into two segments, north and south of the tracks, with the westbound lanes north of the track and the eastbound lanes south of the track.

The line crosses Arbatus Avenue in Huntington Park, Miles Avenue, Seville Avenue, Rita Avenue, and Pacific Boulevard at grade in a residential area, followed by Rugby Avenue, Malabar Street, Santa Fe Avenue, Albany Street and Regent Street in a decaying industrial area. The line then crosses both segments of Alameda Street at grade, with the flat crossing (MP 487.5) with the Vernon Line in between them. There is a signal at Huntington Park between Alameda Street and Wilmington Avenue. The line crosses Wilmington Avenue at grade, splits into two legs at the east end of Slauson Junction, and both legs cross Homes Avenue at grade. One leg turns north, with a narrow curving segment of Randolph Street on the northeast side, to meet the Wilmington sub. at the north end of Slauson Junction (MP 487.3), under the Blue Line station just south of Slauson Avenue. The other leg turns south, with a narrow curving segment of Randolph Street on the southeast side, to join the Wilmington sub. at the south end of Slauson Junction, just south of the 60th Street grade crossing, again under the Blue Line viaduct above.

The "SP Side" (SP Vernon Line)

This line is operated as:

From Ninth Street, where the track coming from the UP Los Angeles subdivision join with the connection coming south from the "East Bank Line", the single track heads due west, crossing the Los Angeles River on a through girder bridge. On the west side of the river, the line crosses the Redondo Junction diamond (where Redondo Tower is). The line crosses over Washington Boulevard on a bridge, and pass underneath the Santa Fe Avenue bridge, to reach J Yard The J Yard (MP 484.9) is aligned northeast to southwest across a couple of city blocks, before the Vernon Line's trackage turns due south at grade level. The main lanes of Alameda Street run along the west side of the single track, Direct Traffic Control, maximum speed 10 mph, line all the way to the south end of Compton, while for much of the way there is an additional two-way street also called Alameda Street on the east side of the line, serving the industries and businesses on that side of the corridor. The Alameda Block starts at MP 485.3.

There are grade crossings at Vernon Avenue (in Vernon), 55th Street, Slauson Avenue (Huntington Park), Randolph Street, Gage Avenue, Zoë Avenue, Florence Avenue (Walnut Park), a private crossing across to an industry where there is no street on the east side of the trench, and Nadeau Street. At two of these, railroad tracks also cross overhead: the ATSF Harbor Subdivision (MP 487.3) at Slauson Avenue and the SP Walker Line (MP 487.5) at Randolph Street. The Alameda Block ends at MP 487.4, and the Walker Block runs from MP 487.4 to MP 487.6. The Vernon Block starts at MP 487.6. .

The Patata Line joins from the east at Firestone Park (MP 489.1), just north of Firestone Boulevard, where the maximum speed rises to 25 mph and there are grade crossings at Firestone Boulevard (in Southgate), Southern Avenue/92nd Street, Tweedy Boulevard, Century/Martin Luther King Boulevard (Lynwood), Fernwood/Santa Ana Boulevard, and Imperial Highway. The Vernon Block ends and the Compton Block starts at MP 489.55.There are signals at South Gate (MP 490.3). I-105 crosses above both Alameda Street and the line, and there are grade crossings at Lynwood Road, Weber Avenue (Compton), El Segundo Boulevard, and Pine Avenue, with singals at 124th Street (MP 491.8). Rosecrans Boulevard passes over both Alameda Street and the line, after which there are grade crossings at Elm Street, Palmer Street/Carson Place, Compton Boulevard (East Compton, MP 494.1), Myrrh Street, and Alondra Boulevard.

Greenleaf Boulevard, in Compton, crosses over the track at grade. There are signals at Reyes (MP 495.3). The track then passes under the Route 91 and frontage road bridges.  The Blue Line passes overhead on a flyover. The line crosses Alameda Street (from the east side to the west side of the street) at grade, just north of the latter’s intersection with Santa Fe Avenue The Compton Block ends at MP 495.5. At Dominguez Junction (MP 496.2)), where the maximum speed drops to 10 mph, the Amoco Line joins from the west side.

The two tracks now run at grade along the west side of Alameda Street, with the tracks of the former SP Dolores Yard alongside (between main tracks and street). Del Amo Boulevard passes overhead on a bridge that crosses the track formations and Alameda Street.  There are detectors at MP 497.5,  and crossovers and signal bridges at Carson (MP 497.7) just north of the UP locomotive stabling area known as the Dolores Roundhouse, on the west side of the main tracks, at approximately where the ICTF (Intermodal Container Transfer Facility) yard tracks leave the main lines and cross Alameda Street on a bridge taking them to ICTF on the east side of the street.

I-405 and 223rd Street pass overhead on closely adjacent bridges crossing all tracks and Alameda Street.  There are crossovers and signal bridges at CP Dolores (MP 498.7), where Sepulveda Boulevard crosses overhead on another bridge that spans all tracks and Alameda Street.

SP Patata Line

The SP Patata Line leaves the UP. Los Angeles subdivision at Bartolo (MP 504.9) on the east bank of the San Gabriel River, continuing south along the river bank and across the BNSF San Bernardino via Fullerton line on a diamond directly beneath the Slauson Avenue bridge at DT Junction (MP 501.7) The single track, Direct Traffic Control (Puente Block from MP 501.1), maximum speed 15 mph, line then swings west onto the continuation of the La Habra subdivision and passes under I-605. It then crosses Pioneer Boulevard in Santa Fe Springs at grade, and at Pioneer (LN039) splits off from the Brea Chemical Industrial Lead (which continues straight ahead across the Los Nietos (BNSF)/Santa Fe Springs (UP) diamond with the BNSF main line) and turns south across Los Nietos Road into the small Los Nietos yard (MP 500.7). At the south end of that yard, the track crosses Smith Avenue at grade, headed due south, and then crosses Telegraph Road on a through girder bridge.

The line then turns southwest, crossing Pioneer Boulevard (again) and Florence Avenue to the northwest of and adjacent to their intersection, passing under I-5 into Norwalk, across Orr & Day Road at grade, and under the Firestone Boulevard bridge. Immediately southwest of this bridge is the 10 mph, Two Main Tracks, CTC, Studebaker wye (MP 497.6), with the Los Nietos branch using the west curve to turn northwest, while the east curve turns onto the Santa Ana Branch, which is also accessible in a direct southeastward direction (inline with the continuing Los Nietos branch) from South Studebaker. (The wye is laid out like this because the SP Santa Ana line was worked as a single line from Firestone Junction to Santa Ana.) Immediately west of South Studebaker, the Patata Line (DTC, Patata Block, 20 mph) crosses Studebaker Road at grade, and then crosses Hoxie Avenue at grade before passing under the I-605 bridges (including at least one adjacent street). There is a signal just east of Hoxie Avenue, facing east.

West of I-605, the line crosses the San Gabriel River in Downey on a multi-span through girder bridge, and then crosses Regentview Avenue, Stewart & Gray Road, Woodruff Avenue, Lakewood Boulevard, Patton Road, Brookshire Road, Dolan Avenue, Downey Avenue (Downey, MP 495.0), Paramount Boulevard and Rives Avenue at grade, paralleling Firestone Boulevard just a half block south of that street all the way. Firestone Boulevard turns due west and crosses the line at grade at its intersection with Old River School Road. The line then turns gently west-northwest, crossing the Rio Hondo on a multi-span through girder bridge, crossing Garfield Avenue at grade just south of its junction with Eastern Avenue, crossing I-710 on another through-girder bridge and then crossing the Los Angeles River on a multi-span through-truss bridge.

Before reaching Atlantic Avenue, Patata Street comes alongside to the north. At Atlantic Avenue, the line crosses the street and then the UP San Pedro subdivision on a diamond at Patata (MP 492.1) on the west side of the street. There is an industrial complex on the north side of the line (served from the San Pedro line), after which Independence Avenue runs along the north side of the line all the way to Long Beach Boulevard. There is a grade crossing at Otis Street, after which Ardmore Avenue runs along the south side of the line all the way to Santa Fe Avenue. There are signals at Ardmore (MP 490.1) grade crossings at San Juan Avenue, California Avenue, State Street, Long Beach Boulevard and Santa Fe Avenue. West of Santa Fe Avenue at the former location of Firestone Junction (now Firestone Park, MP 489.1), the line curves (10 mph) around to the south and runs along the east side of the Alameda Corridor trench and then surface line all the way to CP Compton where it ends. The line crosses at grade all of the streets that cross over the trench on bridges.

Lines in the Harbor Area

The remaining lines in the harbor area cover the following subdivisions:

The track bridges over the Dominguez Channel. At East Watson (MP 499.7), there is a junction with ATSF trackage from the north end of Watson Yard. The line then turns southeast, past Thenard Tower (MP 501.0), to Wilmington (Anaheim Boulevard (MP 501.4)), where the Harbor Belt Line San Pedro Branch heads southwest along the north side of the Dominguez Channel and the East Basin. It is entirely single track within Yard Limits.

The SP Long Beach line heads east-southeast, away from Wilmington (Anaheim Boulevard (MP 501.4)), past the diamond crossing with the UP San Pedro Branch at Crucero (MP 502.0), after which there are two main tracks within Yard Limits. The line then passes the ends of six streets at grade in quick succession, in an industrial area just north of Anaheim Street. There are signals adjacent to Perry Avenue, and the Terminal Island Freeway (Route103) and Anaheim Street pass overhead. There are more signals at Gaspur, the east end of Mead Transfer connects in from the west, and there is a yard alongside to the south at Long Beach (MP 503.5). The line crosses Pier B Yard Street at grade and turns due south on the west side of the Long Beach Freeway (I-710), crossing Pier C Street and Pier D Street at grade.

The line passes under the elevated Ocean Boulevard, as lines diverge to Piers D, E, and F, and crossovers at Pier G Yard, where many sidings diverge. At ITS, the lines to Piers F and G diverge from the line to Pier J, which reduces to single track and turns east and then curves southeast and southwest around the Southeast Basin. At Switch 38, two tracks resume,  At PCT, the line heads momentarily westward, then curves around to the south and finally east onto Pier J. There are on-dock container ship-to-train transfer facilities at all of the berthing locations on Pier J.

At Thenard Tower, the SP Vernon Line trails in on the west side. After crossing over Alameda Street) on a bridge, the line turns south again.  Pacific Coast Highway (Route 1) crosses at grade. At Dominguez, the main tracks cross over Henry Ford Avenue to head for Terminal Island while lines at grade level connect to the San Pedro line to the west and the UP Manuel line past the west end of Mead Transfer to UP’s Manuel Yard (at the end of the UP San Pedro subdivision) to the east.

HBL takes ownership of the line at an end on junction at Anaheim (Street), (where the eponymous street crosses overhead on a bridge), the HBL San Pedro line departs to the west and the  UP Mead Transfer yard lies to the east.  At Transfer Junction the end-on connection with the ATSF Harbor line from the south end of Watson Yard, running alongside Alameda Street to the west, trails in from the north, and the line turns west. Harbor Belt Line has its main facilities at Pier A Yard, at Fries Avenue, west of Avalon Boulevard. From this locations, various lines head south and southwest onto the various arms of Pier A, including the one where steel coils is loaded onto unit trains for transfer to steel finishing facilities elsewhere in Southern California.

The San Pedro line continues generally west, along the south side of Harry Bridges Boulevard to Figueroa (Street), MP 2.4, where there is a grade crossing into the West Basin Area, the line turns southwest, along the east side of John Gibson Road (with the Harbor Freeway, I-110, beyond that. To the east of the line is the large American President Lines container terminal, with its on-dock ship-to-train container transfer facilities. At Tosco, a spur to the west crosses John Gibson Road and passes under I-110 to reach the huge Tosco oil refinery located west of the freeway. The south end of the APL facilities also the end of Yard limits and the end of normal daytime freight operations. Here, the line is curving around to the south then east, and then south again, alongside Front Street. It passes under the Vincent Thomas Bridge, a massive suspension bridge crossing over the Main Channel to Terminal Island, as it turns south for the second time. Prior to the development of the coal transshipment facilities at LATX on Terminal Island, there had been a simple coal transshipment facility at the Berth 49 location, using a primitive-looking rotary car dumper for unloading the coal hoppers.

At Henry Ford Boulevard, the overhead lines and the grade-level lines come together and cross the Cerritos Channel onto Terminal Island via a bridge with a central lifting span, with the Terminal Island Freeway bridge immediately to the east. On the island, tracks separate to the east (to piers S and T) and south (to Global Gateway South on Pier 400, which has on-pier, ship-to-train container transfer facilities) at Mole. A single track continues west to the Los Angeles Transfer facility (the coal transfer operation) at LATX and the APL storage tracks to its north.