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What’s Next for Metro in Virginia?

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Vanishing PointFrom the Washington Examiner’s Kytja Weir:

Metro officials are eyeing a Brown Line to join the system’s existing palette.

The transit agency is planning for the future, looking at creating a train line that dips from Friendship Heights into the District and back up to Silver Spring and past White Oak. It’s also studying a line along the Capital Beltway loop, diverting the Blue Line from its current route across downtown to create a midcity rail line, or running an offshoot from the Green Line to National Harbor.

None of the plans is funded or even firm. Engineering hasn’t been done and land hasn’t been set aside. But the transit agency is studying what it will need by 2040 to accommodate growth in the region and relieve pressure on the system.

Officials plan to discuss some possibilities with regional leaders Wednesday, then hold workshops in July to hear riders’ thoughts. By next spring, Metro hopes to have a final plan identifying which projects it will consider developing.

In general, I’d support new lines that get people into & out of DC’s center (serving both transportation needs and security purposes) over loop lines. In particular, a new midcity Blue Line could fill in major Metro gaps in places like Georgetown & Thomas Circle.

So what would you like to see after the Silver Line is completed? Maybe a Gold Line down Route 7 as GreaterGreaterWashington.org’s Steve Offutt has suggested? There’s also the long-discussed Columbia Pike streetcar project.

  • Jim W

    Lets connect the Green Line offshoot to the Yellow Line at Eisenhower.  The Woodrow Wilson Bridge is transit ready.  A good way to connect Maryland workers to Virginia jobs.

  • mrg.uva

    I like Jim’s idea.  Gold line down 7 would be great.  I will say that my major complaint about Metro is that it is so DC-centric.  I’d like to see more of a metro web, rather than to-and-from DC.  Living in NYC, it’s great.  I don’t need a car because I can get to within 3 blocks of everywhere I need or want to go.  I wish I could say the same about Metro.

  • Teddy Goodson

    During the endless arguments, I mean discussions, about where the “subway” was to go way back in the beginning, a Columbia Pike line was begged for (the high number of apartment-dwellers along the Pike would have instantly provided riders) but rejected because of the expense of dealing with “all those hills.” A nice urban trolley line would be a better option, but without rails— the street is already jammed with cars, and only a few of those would disappear when people began riding the trolley. Nevertheless, it’s a good idea—- run it all the way to Annandale.

    At that time I was plumping for a Beltway line to circumnavigate the inner metro area, with the idea that it would have joint stops at every intersection with other planned metro lines heading into the District, so you could ride around the rim and change at the intermittant stops to an in-bound (or out-bound) line. I thought it would be ideal for workers, giving them a mobility to change jobs anywhere in the metro area without having to move their domicile to a new location to avoid a horrible commute. It would give labor more mobility, just as capital is mobile.

    It would have formed a Metro Web, to match the sprawling growth going on, which was creating several new employment centers and new business downtowns. The idea was dismissed as “too expensive,” and not serving the District-centric orientation of the politicos planning the Metro.