• Silver Line Dulles WMATA Metrorail progress/pictures

  • Discussion related to DC area passenger rail services from Northern Virginia to Baltimore, MD. Includes Light Rail and Baltimore Subway.
Discussion related to DC area passenger rail services from Northern Virginia to Baltimore, MD. Includes Light Rail and Baltimore Subway.

Moderators: mtuandrew, therock, Robert Paniagua

  by JDC
Metro will be handing out 100 silver tickets to the first 100 riders on the initial Silver line trail. Details coming soon, per Adam Tuss. Once again, I guess I'll be missing out on the ticket and pennant flag given other obligation. https://twitter.com/AdamTuss/status/158 ... sC493YuAnA
  by YOLO
the silver ticket is not being issued to the first 100 riders, you have to be selected by metro (details in their twitter post)
  by Tom V
I have been following this project for what seems like an eternity, since George W. Bush was President. I remember visiting Tysons Corner in 2011 and watching the progress. It's amazing that it's taken this long, and now the day is finally here.

Congratulations, now you better use it.
  by farecard
perfbill wrote: Thu Nov 03, 2022 9:11 am
And the airport seemed to make sense at that time, especially when they had a special access road to take it from the newly completed beltway right up to the terminal.
I thought the Dallas Access Road was built after IAD opened, and no one wanted to go that far west on local roads. It was built with *airport* not highway funding; hence the dance over it being free while the Toll Road isn't.

As for building that far out, airports need LARGE areas; something hard to assimilate anywhere but the boonies. At least IAD is in the same state, cough CVG.

But yes, the Silver line needs an express track. But then, as I've said before, the line also needs a Dulles Terminal Station vs. Dulles Airport Parking Lot one.
  by justalurker66
farecard wrote: Mon Nov 14, 2022 5:10 pmI thought the Dallas Access Road was built after IAD opened, and no one wanted to go that far west on local roads. It was built with *airport* not highway funding; hence the dance over it being free while the Toll Road isn't.
The access road was built and opened with the airport in 1962. It was as it is today, westbound entrance and eastbound exit except for the connection at the airport itself. The toll road was opened in 1984 allowing commuters to travel the corridor to places other than the airport (for a fee). The land under the roads is owned by the airport. The airport authority now operates the toll road and access road (VDOT operated the roads under contract until 2006).
  by YOLO
Took the inaugural train and some observations:

Metro didnt make enough pennants. They were pretty much gone by 2:30ish when the 2nd train to Ashburn pulled thru.

Metro tried to put stickers on the platforms for those trying to go to IAD but theyre all peeling off already, lol

Trains were going rather slowly around IAD, I assume its weather related.

Some of the stations have fake falcons presumable to prevent birds from nesting in the platforms

Looks like the trains still have codes for the working name stations originally set back in the day, there was a train showing its destination as ROUTE 772

The legacy fleet now says "<<< DOORS OPEN" or "DOORS OPEN >>>" instead of showing <<</>>> by itself

The train i was on was pretty dirty too, the railcar I was on had vodka bottles rolling around the floor. They need to clean these more
  by JDC
Yea I know everyone is celebrating the shiny new thing meanwhile metro doesn't have enough railcars and the 7ks are still missing in action. Also, LC mentioned its vendor is having trouble finding bus drivers so the new routes to the stations will be serviced by vans not busses, and some routes won't be ready as planned. Oh and the vendor's drivers may go on strike very soon.
  by KTHW
I wonder if leveraging the 1 or 2 pocket tracks on the Silver/Orange line would be an inexpensive alternatives to allow express trains to run? You could try the following schedule with 8min headways between regular trains, with express trains running every 16mins. I make the assumption that every station stop costs you 1min with accel/deccel and stopping.

A regular train leaves IAD and is followed by an express train 4mins later. The express train skips all 3 stations in between until Wiehle/Reston-East where it passes the regular train that has pulled into the pocket track to the west of the station. At this point it has passed the initial regular train and has a theoretical 8min gap with the next regular train. The express train then continues non-stop to Tysons, skipping the 2 stations in between. It then skips 2 more stations until its next stop at Balston, before skipping 3 more stations until Rosslyn. By my math this allows the express train to shave off 10-12 mins between IAD and the core, adds 2mins to a regular train's travel time, and could be done with existing infrastructure. I'm not sure if WMATA's signaling infrastructure is built to handle this, but it could be an inexpensive way to offer express service to IAD.
  by justalurker66
So you are taking a 53 minute trip from Dulles to Metro Center and cutting off 12 minutes (at best)? The trip by car from Dulles to Metro Center is 30-45 minutes (depending on time of day). If one walked up to find the express just ready to depart it is practically a break even. If one refuses to board the regular train knowing that the next one they lose 4 minutes waiting for the express. To have the express depart 4 minutes after the regular train you would need 4 minute headways west of Dulles.

It sounds messy and not a great time saver. One would need to chart out the entire plan to see if one could save minutes. What is your plan for the outbound direction? No expresses or would you run expresses one way during one part of the day and the other way a different part of the day?

I believe anyone who is in a hurry would take the faster route by road (it could be much faster if their destination is not silver line adjacent). 30 minutes by road off peak is harder to beat. (Travel times estimated by Google Maps.)
  by perfbill
The following is an issue with parking in Ashburn, and by proxy, probably at Loudoun Gateway. First, the North parking lot is a REAL HAUL to get to the station. It is where it is and not much can be done about that. Just didn't look so far when driving by on the Greenway. The South lot is a little closer, but not by much.

When trying to exit the garage for the first time - which is not implemented by WMATA - it was dark and the machine that takes your tickets was not clear. I put in the ticket and the screen shows "Already in Use." Does that mean that there is another copy of the ticket in play or the machine is locked? In the dark I could not see that it had spit the ticket out, so lighting is an issue. It did the in out three times, then rejected. On the third time I went through this process I was able to barely see in the dark that the ticket had come right back out, so I took it. Then it asked for my card.

Being a tapper, I did the card tap, but got a screen that I am not registered with their system. So they won't take my payment without registration? And I'm at the machine with cars lining up behind me? I did not find any signs in a logical location explaining any of this. Fortunately it took an insert, which should be the same as a tap, but with this system it clearly is not. Parking was $6.00, not the usual $4.95 that I often encounter.

How does this translate? In a garage that holds many more cars than Whiele Reston East, having to press a button to get a ticket to enter (and if you don't drive close enough, opening the door of the car to do so) takes some extra time, so the flow of cars in is pretty bad after a while. Then, having to go through even the regular process of payment at this garage instead of tapping with your Metro card (I could not see where it would even consider a Metro card payment, and given that mine is on my phone, a tap would have been negated) means at least three times as long just to exit the garage. How does this play at 5:45 on a typical commuter afternoon? I think we will know by February.

This appears to be similar to the system at Reston Town Center, which is a huge impediment, and perhaps deterrent to parking there. When they start getting ten to fifteen minute backups in the three Loudoun garages just to exit (and any suggestion of forcing us to register with their system will be met with resistance by many), perhaps they will revisit how this is done. Or, perhaps somebody might read this and consider doing that much sooner than when things are often done with WMATA, well after the problem becomes endemic or more than a nuisance.

As for the ride - well, I've ridden Metro for decades, and I've gone to Dulles for decades, so, meh. It was not all that shiny and new. Just a slightly different type of gumbo, but nice to have.

I'd love to hear other experiences from the Loudoun garages, and if it is the same at CIT.

Bill Edwards
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