All-door boarding will be expanding to the busy Wilshire Boulevard Metro Rapid Line 720 to speed up transit trips and reduce the time buses dwell at stops, Metro announced Tuesday.

The new service will begin Sunday on Metro’s busiest line in the system, which carries close to 30,000 boarding passengers on an average weekday, Metro officials said.

The expansion comes after an all-door program launched in June on the Vermont Avenue Metro Rapid Line 754 and on the Silver Line last year, where all-door boarding has helped improve on-time performance, according to Metro.

“The Wilshire Boulevard buses are some of our very busiest, so Metro is expanding all door boarding on the 720 Rapid so it’s `easy on’ and `easy off,’ speeding up every riders’ transit trip,” said Metro Board Chair and county Supervisor Sheila Kuehl.

Riders will be able to board Line 720 at any door of the bus and pay their fare by tapping their TAP card on the fare validator that is installed next to each door. Riders will no longer have to line up and wait to board at only the front door of the bus.

Metro said that for a limited time, it will provide free TAP cards to cash paying customers along the Line 720 Wilshire and Whittier corridors to encourage more people to use TAP and notify customers of the TAP-only payment method on all-door boarding lines. After the promotional period, riders without a TAP card will be able to board at the front door where they can buy a TAP card and load it.

“Making the bus system more user-friendly, faster and convenient will go a long way toward growing our ridership as we continue to look at ways to improve the Metro bus system,” Metro CEO Phillip A. Washington said.

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