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Union Station’s Traxx Closes, Citing Increased Competition From Imperial Western Beer Co.

The 22-year-old restaurant closed two days ago

Mona Holmes is a reporter for Eater Los Angeles and a regular contributor to KCRW radio. She has covered restaurants, dining, and food culture since 2016. In 2022, the James Beard Foundation nominated her for a Jonathan Gold Local Voice Award.

Union Station’s Art Deco-inspired Traxx closed fairly quietly on Monday. The restaurant was positioned in the main hallway of Union Station’s grand waiting room and stayed open for 22 years.

Traxx owner Tara Thomas opened the restaurant in 1997. And while there are plenty of casual or fast food eateries throughout Union Station, her biggest competition came from Imperial Western Beer Company, which opened last October. The behemoth brewery and restaurant has become a popular destination on the southern end of the transit hub with longer hours, a vast menu, and two bars.

The entire property is managed by LA Metro, which released a statement stating Traxx’s lease ends in September 2020. This could indicate that business was slow, as breaking a lease comes with a cost. As one of the few sit-down restaurants in a main part of Union Station, the Traxx space will likely remain vacant for a short spell.

Thomas’ former partner’s name might ring a bell. Real estate developer Ira Yellin is best known for his purchase and restoration of Grand Central Market. According to Downtown News, the two formed a partnership after Yellin approached Thomas to helm a new eatery in Union Station. Yellin passed away in 2002.

Traxx. 800 Alameda St #122, Downtown, CA