(Updated at 3:40 p.m.) Track work will close Metro stations along the Orange Line this weekend, for the third time in the past month. This time the Ballston and Virginia Square stations will be out of service.
The closures begin at 10:00 p.m. on Friday, May 17, and run through closing on Sunday, May 19. Trains are expected to operate at normal weekend intervals even though service will be split into two segments — between Vienna and East Falls Church and between Clarendon and New Carrollton.
Free shuttle buses will replace trains between East Falls Church and Clarendon. Customers using shuttle bus service should add up to 25 minutes to their travel time.
The last trains of the night from Vienna to East Falls Church will depart 28 minutes earlier than normal — at 1:57 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights, and at 10:57 p.m. on Sunday.
The Orange Line closures are to allow for track circuit module replacement. There will also be work on the Red and Green lines this weekend. Information regarding those closures can be found on WMATA’s website.
The Ballston Business Improvement District expressed concern about the timing of the Ballston Metro station closure, considering the Taste of Arlington festival is expected to bring around 20,000 people to that area on Sunday.
Members of the BID have worked out a deal with WMATA. The station closures will remain in effect and passengers will still need to take shuttles between East Falls Church and Clarendon. However, starting around 11:00 a.m. on Sunday, additional shuttles will be put into service to accommodate the heavier flow of passengers expected to travel to Taste of Arlington, which begins at noon.
“They will add a whole crew of buses to the schedule for Sunday so they can ensure that nobody is waiting too long and can get to their destination in a timely fashion,” said Ballston BID CEO Tina Leone. “We’re not the first group this has happened to. They’ve assured us they will monitor the buses in making sure they’re arriving and leaving at a rapid rate. We’re just thrilled they were so responsive and so accommodating.”
Leone added that the bus trip is only about 10 minutes, so hopefully festival attendees won’t experience too many delays. Those who prefer to drive to the event should note that the cost is only one dollar for three hours to park at the Ballston garage.
Disclosure: Ballston BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser
The stations will close beginning today at 10:00 p.m. and running through closing on Sunday. The closures allow for track circuit replacement, which is a safety measure recommended by the NTSB.
Trains will operate every 15 minutes in two segments: between Vienna and Virginia Square, and between Rosslyn and New Carrollton. There will be free shuttle buses to take passengers between stops from Virginia Square to Rosslyn. Customers using the shuttles should add 15 minutes to their travel time.
To allow for shuttle bus connections, the last train from Vienna to Virginia Square will depart 31 minutes earlier than normal on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. The train will leave Vienna at 2:05 a.m. on Friday and Saturday, and at 11:05 p.m. on Sunday.
Riders on the Blue and Yellow lines should also expect delays. Trains will be single tracking between Braddock Road and Pentagon City due to maintenance such as rail tie, fastener and insulator renewal. Blue and Yellow trains will operate every 30 minutes.
WMATA reports the closure is for NTSB-recommended track circuit module replacement, rail joint elimination, tie renewal and other various track improvements.
Both Blue and Yellow Line trains will operate in two segments. Blue Line trains will run between Crystal City and Largo Town Center, and between Braddock Road and Franconia-Springfield every 16 minutes from 7:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m., and every 20 minutes from 9:00 p.m. until system closing. Yellow Line trains will run between Crystal City and Mount Vernon Square, and between Braddock Road and Huntington every 16 minutes from 7:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m., and every 20 minutes from 9:00 p.m. until system closing.
There will be two routes of free shuttle buses replacing train service between Crystal City and Braddock Road. Express buses will operate between Crystal City and Braddock Road only. Local buses running between Crystal City and Braddock Road will serve Reagan National Airport. Customers using the shuttles should allow about 15 minutes of extra travel time.
The track work and closures will begin at 10:00 p.m. on Friday, March 1, and will continue through closing on Sunday, March 3. More information about track work throughout the system this weekend can be found on WMATA’s website.
Both the Ballston and Virginia Square Metro stations will be closed and the Orange Line split into two sections from about 10:00 p.m. Friday to system closing on Monday, Nov. 12, a federal holiday. The closures will allow the replacement of track switches outside Ballston station.
Free shuttle bus service will be provided between the Clarendon and East Falls Church Metro stations.
Orange Line trains between East Falls Church and Vienna, meanwhile, will be single tracking this weekend for testing on the Silver Line. As a result of the work, trains will operate between Clarendon and New Carrollton at regular weekend service intervals, and between East Falls Church and Vienna every 24 minutes.
“Customers traveling through the work zone via shuttle bus service should allow about 30 minutes of additional travel time,” Metro said. “Customers traveling to/from stations west of East Falls Church should allow up to 45 minutes of additional travel time (30 minutes for shuttle bus service plus up to 15 minutes due to single tracking).”
Life will be a bit easier for south Arlington residents. There will be no work this weekend on the Blue and Yellow Lines.
Flickr photo by Mattron
From about 10:00 p.m. tonight (Friday) to system closing on Sunday, the Rosslyn and Arlington Cemetery Metro stations will be closed and both the Blue and Orange lines will be split into two segments.
The closure will “allow for tie and insulator renewal, joint and fastener renewal, tunnel leak repair, station sign installation and fiber-optic cable work,” Metro said in a press release.
Free shuttle buses will replace trains between Courthouse and Foggy Bottom on the Orange Line, and between Pentagon and Foggy Bottom on the Blue Line. The two segments of each line — a Virginia segment and a D.C./Maryland segment — will operate “at regular weekend intervals.”
Metro says customers should anticipate 20-30 minutes of additional travel time and should consider alternate travel options, like accessing D.C. via trains traveling over the Yellow Line bridge.
Flickr pool photo by Chris Rief
Superstorm Sandy — nee Hurricane Sandy — brought heavy rain and fierce winds to Arlington Monday night and early Tuesday morning.
Arlington was “spared the worst of the storm’s impact,” according to county officials, but Sandy and her 60 mph wind gusts knocked down dozens of trees across the county, many of which fell onto roadways and into houses.
As of 8:45 a.m., Arlington County was reporting 22 incidents of trees falling onto or into houses. No injuries were reported and authorities made sure all residents were safe. In fact, there are no known storm-related fatalities or injuries, according to county officials.
About 40 roads were still blocked by downed trees, including Washington Boulevard at N. Utah Street in Ballston, seen above. Crews were working to remove the trees, but some fell across power lines, requiring assistance from Dominion.
Approximately 20 traffic signals are not functioning this morning. All dark intersections should be treated as an all-way stop.
As of 9:10 a.m., Dominion was reporting 15,586 customers without power in Arlington, down slightly from more than 18,000 last night.
Statewide, from Sunday to 6:00 this morning, Virginia State Police responded to 2,549 traffic crashes and disabled vehicles, and received a total of 4,605 calls for service. At the height of the storm, state police say they were fielding 155 calls for service an hour. VDOT, meanwhile, has lifted HOV restrictions on I-395, I-95, I-66 and the Dulles Toll Road today.
While winds aren’t quite a strong today, Arlington officials say fallen debris, high standing water and remaining weather impacts are still making travel hazardous.
“We continue to urge caution,” the county said. “Conditions remain potentially dangerous outside. Avoid going out onto the roads. Never drive into standing water.”
Those who must travel today will eventually be able to do so via Metro. The transit agency says it will restore limited bus and rail service starting at 2:00 p.m. Trains and buses will operate on a Sunday schedule.
Update at 10:25 a.m. – Arlington Public Schools says a decision about reopening schools on Wednesday will be made “by early this evening.”
Metrorail and Metrobus service will not resume service Tuesday morning. An announcement on when service may be restored will be made after Metro is able to assess damage and weather conditions in the morning. Metro personnel will need to perform a comprehensive damage assessment, including inspections of track, bridges, aerial structures, stations and facilities. Metrorail service restoration is also contingent on adequate commercial power to support operations and repair of any storm-related damage. For Metrobus, service restoration will vary by route and depend on road conditions.
MetroAccess service will remain suspended all day Tuesday.
Metro will restore service only when it is safe to do so.
Also this afternoon, the Office of Personnel Management announced that federal government offices would once again be closed to the public on Tuesday.
Non-emergency employees (including employees on pre-approved paid leave) will be granted excused absence (administrative leave) for the number of hours they were scheduled to work unless they are:
- required to telework,
- on official travel outside of the Washington, DC, area,
- on leave without pay, or
- on an alternative work schedule (AWS) day off.
Telework-Ready Employees who are scheduled to perform telework on the day of the announcement or who are required to perform unscheduled telework on a day when Federal offices are closed to the public must telework the entire workday or request leave, or a combination of both, in accordance with their agencies’ policies and procedures, subject to any applicable collective bargaining requirements.
Emergency Employees are expected to report to their worksites unless otherwise directed by their agencies.
Virginia State Police, meanwhile, asked media outlets to help correct a rumor that the agency is telling drivers to stay off the roads. VSP is only asking drivers to limit their travel. Earlier today, however, Arlington County asked residents to “stay where you are.”
Virginia State Police are advising motorists to limit their travels and avoid being on the roads, if/when possible, as Hurricane Sandy continues to make its inland path. NO ONE is being told they have to be off the roads by 3 p.m. Monday, as is incorrectly circulating on social media.
The Orange Line will be split into two segments from 10:00 p.m. on Friday to system closing on Monday. Trains will run between Vienna and Virginia Square, and from Rosslyn to New Carrollton. Trains will run at normal weekend service levels. Shuttle buses will run between Rosslyn, Courthouse, Clarendon and Virginia Square.
Metro advises riders to expect an additional 20-30 minutes of travel time when traveling through the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor. The agency says the extended closure will allow it to perform an NTSB-recommended switch replacement near Clarendon.
No work is scheduled on the Blue or Yellow lines this weekend.
As we reported earlier this week, riding Metro will be a challenge for users of the Orange and Blue lines this weekend. Major track work will force the closure of the Rosslyn and Arlington Cemetery stations.
The closures will be in place starting at 10:00 tonight and continuing until the system closes on Sunday. WMATA says workers will renew rail fasteners, replace insulators and remove sludge from the tunnel beneath the Potomac River.
Orange Line trains will be split into two segments. One set of trains will run between Vienna and Court House every 20 minutes, and another between Foggy Bottom and New Carrollton at normal weekend service levels.
Blue Line trains will also operate in two segments. One set of trains will run between Franconia-Springfield and Mt. Vernon Square via the Yellow Line bridge at normal weekend service levels, and the other between Foggy Bottom and Largo Town Center at normal weekend service levels.
Shuttle buses will be provided at affected stations along both lines. Metro says riders should expect to add 20-30 minutes to regular travel time — or reconsider their use of Metrorail altogether.
“While bus shuttle service is available, customers traveling between the District and Blue/Yellow stations in Virginia may wish to consider alternate travel options,” WMATA said on its web site.
More details about the buses and the service impacts, after the jump.
The Clarendon Metro station closed for an hour last night after displaced floor tiles led to fears of structural problems at the station.
Around 6:30 p.m., Metro employees observed floor tiles popping out of place on the mezzanine level as trains passed through the station, according to WMATA spokesman Dan Stessel. Concerned about the possibility of an underlying structural issue, the station was closed at 6:42 and police and structural engineers were scrambled to the scene.
Engineers arrived at the station just after 7:00 and determined that the problem was merely “cosmetic” — caused by the cold temperatures and the vibrations caused by passing trains. The station was reopened at 7:41.
“It’s an unusual situation,” Stessel acknowleged. “But the workers did the right thing. We took action in an abundance of caution.”
During hour-long closure, shuttle bus service was set up between the Courthouse and Virginia Square stations.
Following the incident, a team of workers began ripping up the floor tiles just outside the station’s main fare gates. They were planning to place plywood over the ripped-up tiles as a “temporary solution” to make it easier for morning commuters to walk on the uneven surface, according to Stessel.
Permanent repairs will be performed in the coming days, Stessel said.
The Thanksgiving holiday travel rush — an 11-day stretch that’s considered one of the busiest times for air travel around the county — will begin on Friday, according to Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority.
If you’re flying out of Reagan National Airport this weekend, however, plan on the trip taking a bit longer than usual. Scheduled track work on the Blue and Yellow Lines will close the Crystal City, Reagan National Airport and Braddock Road Metro stations from 10:00 Friday night through the end of Sunday.
To help accommodate DCA passengers during that time, Metro will run three different airport bus routes. One route includes stops at Pentagon City station, Crystal City station and the airport. Another runs between King Street and the airport. And the third runs from the airport the Metro Center station. There will also be a bus route between the Pentagon City, Crystal City, Braddock Road and King Street stations for local, non-airport riders.
Metro customers are asked to anticipate about 30 minutes of extra travel time.
“Historically, the weekend of November 18-20 is not an especially busy weekend for Metrorail ridership at Reagan National,” Metro said in a press release. “Metrorail service at the airport will operate normally with no scheduled track work throughout the busy Thanksgiving week, beginning Monday, November 21, and continuing through Sunday, November 27.”
Once you get to the airport, MWAA has a comprehensive list of travel tips to help get you through the crowds and security checkpoints smoothly.
Flickr pool photo by BrianMKA
Arlington is holding its 42nd annual tribute to Dr. King at the Thomas Jefferson Community Center auditorium (3501 Second St. S.). The event will feature keynote speaker Rev. Walter Fauntroy, a local civil rights leader who worked with Dr. King, as well as performance by the World Children’s Choir and the Washington-Lee High School Jazz Band.
ABC 7 reporter Horace Holmes will emcee the event, which is taking place from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 16.
On Monday, Arlington’s AmeriCorps team will hold a Martin Luther King Day of Service. From 10:00 a.m. to noon, volunteers will meet at the Arlington Mill Community Center (4975 Columbia Pike) then go forth to help clean up a section of the Pike and the nearby Four Mile Run stream. Anyone interested in participating is asked to register by emailing volunteer[at]arlingtonenvironment.org.
There will also be a “Save a Tree on MLK Day” event from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. at the Gulf Branch Nature Center (3608 Military Road). Volunteers will help save trees by pulling invasive species from the ground. Call 703-228-3403 for more information.
Arlington government offices, schools and libraries will be closed on Monday. The Barcroft Sports and Fitness Center will be open, but every other community center will be closed. Parking won’t be enforced, but trash will be collected.
Metro and ART will be running on a holiday schedule, but Blue and Orange Line work will make commuting into the District tricky.
Blue and Orange Line service will be split in two between Rosslyn and the District during Martin Luther King, Jr. Day weekend due to track work. The work, which will also result in the closure of the Foggy Bottom Metro station, will start Friday night and end early Monday.
Free shuttle bus service will be available between the Rosslyn, Foggy Bottom and Farragut West stations during the closures.
See more info from Metro or the press release below.
The Rosslyn area will be impacted by the closure of Metro’s Foggy Bottom – GWU Station on MLK Weekend (January 14-18, 2011).
On the Blue and Orange Lines, there will not be service between the Rosslyn and Farragut West Metrorail stations, and the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metrorail station will be closed from 10 p.m. Friday, January 14 until 5 a.m. Tuesday, January 18.
There will be free shuttle bus service between Rosslyn and Farragut West stations with a stop at Foggy Bottom-GWU station approximately every 15 minutes before 9:30 p.m. and every 20 minutes after 9:30 p.m.
- At Rosslyn Station, the bus stop will be on N. Moore Street near the Station entrance.
- At Foggy Bottom-GWU Station, the bus stop will be on 23rd Street, south of G Street.
- At Farragut West station, there will be two bus stops on Eye Street, one between 16th and 17th streets and one at 18th Street.
- Signs will direct you to the shuttle bus stops.
If you plan to use Metrorail through the work area, please add approximately 40 minutes to your trip time.
Happy Columbus Day — Normally-clogged commuter routes are clear as government employees and many private sector workers have the day off to celebrate Columbus’ discovery of the New World. Arlington government offices are closed, as are all library branches. It’s expected to be the hottest Oct. 11 on record in the DC area, so if you have the day off, get outside and enjoy it.
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Savannah Might Not Want Brown Back – Former Arlington County Manager Michael Brown may not be wanted back in Savannah, after all. The Savannah Morning News has compiled a list of four “discoveries about city operations” that have occurred since Brown left for Arlington. Among them: “More than $2 million in pay raises and special merit increases Brown awarded each year for the past three years.”
Meaningless Real Estate Data — Home sales are down in Arlington, but only if you compare it to one year ago when the federal government was offering generous real estate tax credits. Median home sale prices are up compared to one year ago. More from the Sun Gazette.
Protests at CAIR Convention — The Council on American-Islamic Relations held its national convention at the Marriott Crystal Gateway in Crystal City Saturday night. Outside the sold-out event, Tea Party leaders planned a protest against CAIR and Sharia law.
Feds May Get Capital Bikeshare Discount — The federal government is entering a corporate partnership agreement with the new Capital Bikeshare program. The deal will likely provide federal employees with a discount on Capital Bikeshare rentals, but details of the partnership have yet to be announced. More from The Federal Times.
Arlington Org Wins Tech Award — The Arlington-based Amazon Conservation Team, which uses technical and scientific tools to help indigenous peoples preserve the rainforest ecosystem, is being recognized for its innovative approach to benefiting humanity. The organization was named a 2010 Tech Awards Laureate by Silicon Valley’s Tech Museum. The award will presented at a gala event on November 6. More from the Huffington Post.
Columbus Day Metro Service Disruptions — The Blue and Orange Lines will be split into two sections over Columbus Day weekend, just in time for three big sporting events and a concert. Bus service will connect the Foggy Bottom and the Federal Triangle stations in the District. More from Dr. Gridlock.