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Clarendon is the Second Fastest-Growing Metro Station

by ARLnow.com February 23, 2012 at 9:30 am 5,135 69 Comments

Two Arlington Metro stations are among a list of the top 10 fastest-growing stations in the entire Metro system in terms of ridership.

The Clarendon Metro station is the agency’s second fastest-growing station, with 14.4 percent ridership growth, according to the Washington Examiner. The East Falls Church station is the fourth fastest-growing, with 11.2 percent ridership growth.

“The list of fast-growing stations serve as a proxy for where development is growing around the region,” the Examiner noted.

The list looked at ridership between July 2011 and January 2012, compared to the same period one year prior.

  • BreakPause02

    Even more pain for those who get on the Metro at Courthouse.

    • Josh S

      In my daily rides, I have come to the conclusion that inbound, the pushiest riders are Courthouse riders. But I guess it’s just a matter of survival.

      Outbound, it’s Rosslyn. Jesus, you’d think those people were starving to death and the train was bound for a feast.

  • Smithers

    Could they perhaps add more fare gates to the station? Having only 3 + the handicap one seems a bit absurd.

    • CW

      Not to mention in the afternoons when it backs up from the fare gates all the way to the “up” escalator.

    • JamesE

      I am glad I don’t have to put up with the metro lines since I am on the anti-car free diet.

      • rob


      • Ren


  • rick

    Every morning I feel the pain as I wait for a train – “full” that is! It will get worse when the “Slver” line opens up

    • Thes

      When the Silver line starts, won’t those be *additional* trains (taking the place of Blue Line trains through the Rosslyn tunnel to Foggy Bottom)? If they are also full, it won’t be any improvement of course, but it also wouldn’t be any worse.

      • Burger

        Yes. I wouldn’t worry too much about the silver line crowding out the train. Most places do not have parking or not massive amounts of parking.

      • drax

        Yes, there will be more trains. The idea that Orange Line trains will be more crowded due to Silver Line trains sharing the track is silly. If anything, there could be less crowding because of additional seats on Silver Line cars.

        The problem, and it’s a big one, with the Silver Line is that the trains may be slower because there are so many on the track.

  • ArlingtonCountyTaxpayer

    do these numbers discount the people who are forced out of the station due to emergencies or “routine” maintenance and given a shuttle ride to Ballston?

    • JamesE

      According to Wikipedia’s latest numbers Ballston has 3x the riders, glad I don’t metro during work hours.

      • Lyon Parker

        We get it man, you don’t use the metro.

        • JamesE

          oh I use it plenty

        • JamesE

          Further more, when the silver line opens I will probably still drive to work due to the metro crowds. (I posted this just to agitate you even more since apparently you get annoyed over two internet posts)

          • Hoo

            Virginia Tech’s finest, ladies and gentlemen.

          • JamesE

            Obsessed much?

          • Steamboat Willie

            You do perpetuate a stereotype

          • Southeast Jerome


          • ReverseCommute

            What’s wrong with driving? And what’s wrong with a reverse commute? It’s time for yourself, to listen to music. I am completely zen when I get to work. But hey, enjoy the cattle wagons.

  • Stitch_Jones

    It is a shame that the Metro system is seemingly becoming a second rate subway and train system. Perhaps it is time for a complete change of management and executive personnel, seeing how maintenance and efficiency are a distant third to management compensation and labor union benefits.

    Unless something changes fast, I fear that Metro’s best days are long gone.

    • South Awwwlington

      you can start by changing its governance…http://www.mwcog.org/news/press/detail.asp?NEWS_ID=482

    • Southeast Jerome

      They actually did a complete management overhaul and are in the beginning stages of a massive infrastructure upgrade.

      The previous management did a horrible job and put the system a decade behind in maintenance because they had no money.

      Now the finally have some cash coming from the Feds and the 3 jurisdictions. That explains all the maintenance programs, station closures, single tracking etc.

      Its a shame it took people dying in a crash to wake up the stakeholders that the system was in shambles, but you cant say truthfully that things are not being done to improve the system. It wasnt built in a short period of time and it wont be fixed in a short period of time. Just be patient.

      And, the silver line will not all of a sudden dump millions of riders onto this line. They will have orange and silver trains all the way through downtown.

      Many silver line riders are current orange line riders that bus to west falls church or park at vienna. Its not going to break down the orange line anymore. If anything, they will have MORE trains and more eight car trains and it’ll be better.

      • South Awwwlington


        I agree whole heartily that METRO was ran into the ground on the backs of previous leaders. Expansionism is sexy, maintenance is not. That said – I still have concerns regarding capacity on “one tunnel” from Rosslyn to DC.

        • CW

          I like capital projects and would love to have more than one tunnel. I would like to have a line running down the pike to open up south arlington to real development, just like wilson/clarendon 30 years ago. Think big people, it’s what made America great. And I’d be willing to pay taxes and market-rate fares to get the job done, too.

          • J


          • John K.


          • Me ke

            I am with you on this one!

          • CW

            Ok, got 4 of us, let’s grab shovels and start digging…start at Rosslyn and pop up under Gtown Cupcake?

  • SoMuchForSubtlety

    I take the metro everyday to work downtown, and I happen to think its a great system. Very clean and overall efficient. Not to mention a nice lareg underground station. Of course I also came here from Chicago, where the El is significantly more crowded than the metro. I would routinely need to let 2 trains go by before there was enogh room to litterally squeeze in by force (and that was living 4 miles from the loop, it just got worse in the closer in stations). Also the trains came far less frequently than metro and the platforms were suspended in the air completely exposed to the elements as it is an elevated sysytem. Try that for comfort in a Chicago winter. So I guess I wasn’t as used to be spoiled.

    • Sully

      The solution to Metro is to get on your train before 7AM. Plenty of room, usually seats.

      • JamesE

        I use to commute to Suitland and would also leave very early and space was not an issue. The same actually applies to 66, before 7 am it is fine, after 8 it is hell.

  • Abe Froman

    Just imagine how much ridership will rise if they were to raise the price of lot/garage parking at night another 2-3 beers, I mean dollars.

  • Jennifer

    Subtelty, I am sorry the the El in Chicago is run worse than WMATA, truly I am. And yes, the winter weather here is significantly milder than it is in the Midwest.

    I’m willing to vertical spoon in the am or pm and be horribly uncomfortable. And I kick myself when I miss a train and have to wait for the next one and am late for work. I am lucky that I can walk up stairs and do not require shuttle service. Those are the most positive aspects of my commute.

    What I don’t appreciate is that WMATA keeps raising rates and there has not been a marked improvement in how the system runs. Broken train wheels, broken rails, broken Metro car doors, broken escalators, broken PA systems, broken elevators, broken Metro cards…the list goes on.

    So, if wanting a Metro that works *and* feels safe means that I am spoiled, then yes I am (although your definition of the word ‘spoiled’ is pretty far off the mark).

    • JamesE

      All I want is better wait times on the weekend, there is nothing worse than getting to a transfer point and seeing “Next Train: 9000 minutes” Of course this would probably only happen if they doubled fares.

    • Josh S

      I invite all those who have Smart Cards to log onto their account and review their use. You can check your entrance and exit times going back in time for quite a ways. Given the constant public bickering about Metro, I was amazed when I did this myself. My rides are remarkably consistent day in and day out. An 18 minute ride is not bad. Sure, I stand most of the time coming in, but not all the time. Afternoons are much better when I usually have a seat.

      The raised rates were not necesarily designed to bring a marked improvement but rather to prevent the system from getting worse. Also, they were overdue as fares had not kept up with inflation over the years.

      • Jennifer

        Speaking of Smart Cards, the “new” system of putting smart benefits in one purse and your other fees in another is among one of the worst ideas I’ve ever heard from Metro. You leave the station and your card reads that you have $2. You go to a machine to put more money on your card and the screen tells you that you have $22, or whatever. What is the point of this?

    • John Andre

      A few days ago I heard on WGN that one of the Chicago lines will be closed a few days for “trackwork”.

      Evidently trackwork is contagious and is beginning to spread from Metro like norovirus!

  • Ben

    And yet still no cell phone service for non Verizon users in the station.

    The clock is ticking – they promised by October 2012…..

    • drax

      FYI, it’s not October 2012 yet.

    • Southeast Jerome

      Its February 23, 2012.

      • Ben

        They already missed their internal deadline of October 2010.

        • JamesE

          Who is in charge of that though, metro or the carriers?

          • SouthPikeGuy


          • Ben

            To clarify Metro wanted to have service in the rest of the stations by Oct 2010 (It went live in Ballston and other stations in 2009) with service in the tunnels by 2012.

            Seems weird we haven’t seen one new station get service since 2009.

          • SouthPikeGuy

            Now, in all fairness, when you say “we” you are referring to Arlington’s Orange Line stations. They have been rolling out service throughout the system during that time.

            And “our” other stations are close. I know a guy, so trust me.

          • Southeast Jerome

            I can do without phone service for the minimal amount of time I’m on the train. I believe NYC has no service at all in their system.

          • drax

            While I think service is a good thing for emergencies and such, it sure is nice that there’s still a public place where a-holes don’t yak into their phones so much.

          • JamesE

            If I talk really loud and use speakerphone people will think I am important.

          • drax


          • Bluemontsince1961


          • Bluemontsince1961

            And +10 to James as well. Ain’t it the truth!

  • HighViewPunk

    I’m always amazed by the morning eastbound Orange Line. Every morning I get to the Ballston station and head west. While I wait I see trian after train arriving across the tracks that look like giant sausages. Just aluminum casings packed with meat.

    • Ballston rider

      I get on at Ballston. It’s not that bad most of the time.

    • Yep Uhuh

      You find it amazing that the trains are crowded going downtown during the rush hour?

      Did you grow up on a farm or something?

    • Steamboat Willie

      How many times does the same thing need to happen until you are no longer amazed?

    • cyclist

      I’m always amazed by the morning eastbound I-66. Every morning I get to the Ballston area and head west. While I wait I see car after car arriving across the highway that look like giant sausages. Just aluminum casings packed with meat.

  • Paul

    Funny, then, that we still lack mobile phone service from the platform (other than Veri$on). And the obvious default need for a west station entrance would surely be met with a high-ball, union-fed estimate costing many millions of dollars. For example, Ballston still hasn’t gotten their west entrance, after some goofballs in the neighboring condo tower (“The Continental”) shut it down because of typical NoVa suburban fears of traffic and vagrants.

    • CW

      Sorry that they haven’t gotten Cricket down there yet.

      And what obvious need for a west entrance is there? Who’s going to use that, people sleeping in the field next to Taste of Morocco?

  • I think we have someone who actually lives in Arlington and is running for Congress in the 8th district.

    • Sorry, forgot to mention his name! Jason Howell! I can’t leave a link to his website because of the comments settings so Google his name for site.

  • Brian Kelly

    Jason Howell is running as an Independent for a seat in the House of Representatives. Check out his website and his Facebook page VoteJasonHowell.

  • John Andre

    Remarkable…that Gottaswing is moving its Tuesday night dance classes and dances next month…from the Clarendon Ballroom to the Carlyle Club in Alexandria…they will miss me as the entry point is the crime-infested King Street station and it’s more difficult to get home late at night.

    When I checked with the CB bartender I learned that the decision was Gottaswing’s …that evidently attendance is declining and they want to move to a smaller dance floor!


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