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Speak Out: Metro’s $26 Billion Improvement Plan

The primary obstacle for "Momentum," which includes a number of Orange Line projects, appears to be funding. What do you think about WMATA’s proposed capital plans? Tell us in the comments.

If you thought the Silver Line would continue to be the focus of  the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) for the foreseeable future, think again.

Metro has a proposed a series of improvements to help the system keep up with demand on other lines. 

For the past year and a half, the agency has been working to unveil "Momentum," a $26 billion spending plan that focuses on, among other things, creating new connections and bypassing others that are holding riders up.

The Washington Post has a story here.

For Orange Line riders, the Post details one proposed project that could make a huge difference for those on Vienna-bound trains:

Planners suggest creating what they call the “Rosslyn bypass.” New tracks would be built west of Rosslyn and near the Pentagon, allowing trains on the Orange Line to go south into Virginia on the Blue Line and east over the Yellow Line bridge

The main snag in the way of the plan, which WMATA board members praised, appears to be where to obtain funding for the project.

In Fairfax and Loudoun, opponents of those counties' participation in the Silver Line project often pointed to the unknown cost of capital needs for Metro, and responsibility for those costs. During the county’s debate about whether to participate, WMATA representatives said they perpetually have a plan that calls for far more investment than is possible by the participating municipalities.

What do you think about WMATA’s proposed capital plans? Tell us in the comments.

Margaret January 29, 2013 at 10:37 PM
tThe more we improve our mass transit capability, the fewer cars will be on the roads. As long as we don't raise the rates any more.
Bob Bruhns January 30, 2013 at 04:47 PM
Since this region swallowed the $5.6 to $6 Billion (depending on who fills out the Tifia letter of interest) Dulles Rail / Silver Line project, some of our so-called 'leaders' (hello Ms. Hudgins, member of Fairfax County BOS and the head of WMATA's Board) apparently decided not to present this idea themselves, but to have Richard Sarles of WMATA run this $26 Billion number up the flagpole for them, to see what happened. After the ARC Tunnel price skyrocket debacle in New Jersey a few years ago, they knew Mr. Sarles would not run away when they handed him the $26 billion figure to present to us. Notice that our 'leaders' have not said a single word about this yet. They are waiting to see if you fall for it. So far, the response has been a barely stifled yawn. Americans have no clue about how difficult it is to collect ONE Billion dollars, much less 26 Billion dollars. And nobody seems to remember how this game is played, either - it's played like an auction. "26 billion, do I hear $30 Billion? $30 Billion, do I hear 40 Billion? 40 Billion, do I hear 60 Billion?" Etc, etc, etc. Does that sound at all familiar? After the Dulles Rail / Silver Line game, it should... My guess is that you will (fall for it). Big, big mistake - but I figure that you will fall for it. You fell for the Dulles Rail / Silver Line, and you'll fall for this too. Meanwhile, our 'leaders' are preparing their first changed story as we speak. Watch.

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