Groundbreaking for New Rosslyn Metro Station Entrance

by ARLnow.com October 28, 2010 at 11:07 am 3,570 23 Comments

Fortuitously timed between yesterday morning’s downpours, local officials and Sen. Jim Webb gathered under a tent near North Lynn Street to break ground on a new entrance to the Rosslyn Metro station.

The entrance will be located across from the existing Metro entrance, between the planned CentralPlace office and residential towers and near the future 1812 North Moore Street tower. It will feature three high-speed elevators and an emergency staircase, but no escalators.

The $32.6 million project also includes the construction of new fare collection and vending equipment, as well as a new kiosk and a new entrance mezzanine.

“I think it’s a good investment,” said Webb, who pointed to heavy traffic on the nearby Roosevelt Bridge as evidence of the importance of the Metrorail system.

The entrance will be able to serve up to 2,000 riders per hour, officials say. Local leaders hope it will help keep pace with the station’s soaring ridership, which has increased 23 percent in the past decade and is expected to increase even more with all the new development in the area.

“The project that’s being initiated today will increase the capacity of the station,” said county board member Chris Zimmerman, who is also sits on Metro’s board of directors. “It will be easier for people to get in and out of Rosslyn station… It’s going to make Rosslyn a more vital place, and help us achieve the vision for Rosslyn that everyone here has been working on for quite a long time.”

The project is being funded by a combination of federal, state and county dollars.

Construction is expected to wrap up in the spring of 2013. In the meantime, construction has necessitated some traffic changes in the Rosslyn area.

  • Vinh An Nguyen

    What good does it do to “increase the capacity of the station” if the trains don’t run any more frequently? So you can crowd even more people on the platforms?

  • YTK

    No escalators? Maybe they could borrow the plans for the Macy*s escalators in New York City — they’ve been working since the 1940’s.

  • a’town

    totally retarded to do this without escalators. an extra 2,000 people an hour is barely anything.

  • Christine

    I’m sorry…. THREE elevators? And the staircase is only for emergencies? So for those who are in a hurry and get to the elevators first (which I imagine will be quite large), you’ll have to wait until the ENTIRE elevator is full before you can move? Not to mention load/unload time? I don’t know… this doesn’t seem wise to me… I think someone may have forgotten some factors in the traffic-flow simulator.

    • Westover

      Still have the escalator option that you have today, this just adds more capacity on top of that. Not that there is room on that platform for more folks during rush hour anyhow.

  • Pigpen

    So given the rate at which people currently get stuck in existing Metro elevators, that means you’ll have the choice of taking the chance of getting stuck in an elevator for hours, or climbing up and down a thousand stairs (and if you’re claustrophobic and handicapped you’ll be wanting to skip that station).

    Maybe they could put in some gigantic fire station poles or sliding boards – then at least people going down would have a third option. How fun would that be?

  • Susan

    if you look at the drawings on the arlington website (http://www.arlingtonva.us/departments/EnvironmentalServices/dot/page78252.aspx) you can see that they are leaving the existing metro entrance and just adding this new one. I think it is a pity they aren’t improving the existing one, which is really ugly.

  • Matt K

    Rosslyn, doors opening left side.

  • PurpleFlipFlops

    Seems fine with me as long as Metro always times the connection between blue/orange to just miss it when I’m heading to the airport.

  • Courthouse Resident

    Couldn’t we have combined this with the ground breaking from 1812 from the other week. They could have done one and then gone across the street to do the other.

    • Jezebel

      No no no. That’s not how you do it at all. Its all about media coverage … something new every day!

  • Jeff Miller

    Unfortunately, this project does not address the most serious problems at Rosslyn Metro – overcrowded platforms and overcrowded trains. Those serious problems are about to get even worse, with the addition of new high-rises in Rosslyn (more passengers entering/exiting @Rosslyn), and when the Silver Line begins service (more transfers @Rosslyn).

    The 2-track Metro system is barely able to accommodate current levels of rush-hour ridership. But Arlington County wants to to squeeze even more people into a crowded, unreliable, overloaded system. And they have the audacity to call that “smart growth”!

    • Vinh An Nguyen

      It addresses it by making it worse!

    • a’town

      actually , having lived in Rosslyn, its maybe the best station to board at heading towards DC in the ballston-rosslyn corridor b/c there is double the # of trains into DC.

      instead of riding the orange crush, you can get a seat on a blue line train into DC, its really nice.

      I dont understand what you mean about platform crowding either. I didnt see this too often, if ever. That is more of an issue at places like Metro Center, Lafont and Farragut

    • Sam

      You’re right, this project doesn’t address those problems. But others do. Metro is looking into rerouting every other blue line train across the 14th St Bridge (Blue Line Realignment Project). Rosslyn can only physically handle 26 trains per hour. By rerouting every other blue line train across from Pentagon to L’Enfant, Metro will free up almost 20% of the track for additional Orange/Silver trains.

      • Disgruntled Commuter

        Which will totally suck for anyone wanting to get from Rosslyn to the Pentagon, Crystal City, DCA and beyond.

        • Sam

          If waiting for every third train instead of every second train makes that much of a dent in someone’s life and is the difference between being okay and “totally sucking”, then perhaps that person shouldn’t live in a major metropolitan area. If it sucks for them that much to wait an extra 5-8 minutes, they should drive or take one of the many buses that runs from Arlington to Alexandria.

          • Disgruntled Commuter

            The trips described take 5-8 minutes, so you are doubling the commute time. Way to make public transit more viable!

          • Vinh An Nguyen

            You’ve got it exactly backwards. It’s not the person who wants fast, reliable public transportation who shouldn’t live in a major metropolitan area, but the one who suggests they should be driving.

  • bob

    Hey Zimme! I’m going down today and voting against you — just for supporting this wasted project. Why isn’t the developer paying for it? Do we even need it?

  • Ray

    Does anyone else notice that trains all slow down to a crawl shortly after Rosslyn heading to Foggy Bottom? Not sure if it has always been this way. Wondering if Rosslyn could handle more trains if this bottleneck could be removed.

    • Sam

      The bottleneck isn’t under the Potomac but at the switch where the lines split. The switch can only switch so fast. The same bottlenecks occur at any line split/junction.

  • Lou

    They must be getting close to the bottom of the shaft and connecting to the mezzanine. All the advertising has been taken off the wall where the new elevator lobby will break through, and they’ve marked off on the floor where the temporary construction barrier will be.


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