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Metro Rush Hour Changes Begin Monday

by Katie Pyzyk June 15, 2012 at 10:30 am 8,116 41 Comments

Monday, June 18, is the big day Metro has been waiting for. Its new “Rush+” service will be implemented in an effort to improve rush hour on the Metrorail system.

Rush+ will be in effect Monday through Friday, from 6:30-9:00 a.m. and 3:30-6:00 p.m.

Orange Line customers who use stations west of Rosslyn should notice three more trains per hour in each direction. Metro estimates the change will allow for an 18 percent increase in capacity on the Orange Line, which would benefit more than 46,000 customers.

Blue and Yellow line customers who use the stations from Pentagon through Reagan National Airport will see the same amount of trains. However, during rush hour there will be three more Yellow trains per hour, and three fewer Blue. Metro estimates Blue Line riders in Virginia could have to wait up to six minutes longer for a train. More than 33,000 customers are expected to benefit from that change.

To accommodate for fewer Blue Line trains, the 9E and 10E Metrobus routes will be tweaked. During rush periods, the buses will offer express service between Rosslyn and Crystal City.

Riders will have to pay attention to the listed end point on each train, because the Orange and Yellow lines will now split during rush hour. Some Orange Line trains will now terminate at Largo Town Center instead of New Carrollton, and some Yellow Line trains will terminate at Greenbelt instead of Fort Totten. In the other direction, some Yellow Line trains will now terminate at Franconia-Springfield instead of Huntington. Dashed lines on the map indicate the altered routes that will be in place during rush hours.

The rail changes are also supposed to benefit the Silver Line, once it goes into service. That line is already listed on the new Metro map.

Metro has set up videos and an interactive map on its website to explain Rush+. The map lets customers click on the sections they travel to see how their commutes will be affected.

  • NrNy2ArlVa

    Just in time for the proposed fare increases on July 1st.

    • lorenzo

      *GASP* i cant afford the metro anymore

  • Jason

    Won’t we be stuck on the trains for even longer if there are delays?

  • courthound

    That settles it – I’m working from home/Iota/Boccato Monday.

    • Tabs

      You mean PAH. Or PAI or PAB.

  • Elizabeth

    This is the best description of the changes I’ve read. Good job!

  • Orangey

    Awesome – so tired of watching empty Blue trains pass by.

    • Bluesy

      Bummer – my odds of trying a time a bus connection in Huntington leaving from Rosslyn are now about nil.

  • Rick

    I think the best part of this map is the lack of Amtrak/VRE/Marc logos on the Union Station stop

    • Dan

      I think the map shown above was a draft version. The actual published map does list the MARC/VRE/Amtrak train logos by the Union Station stop

  • Oranger

    Woohoo! So many empty blue trains pass through Rosslyn and Orange trains are always sitting in Courthouse waiting for them to pass through. I think this will benefit Blue Riders who go into DC a ton, since it’s a much more straight shot across the river. For those who live down in Crystal City/Alexandria stretch and work in Rosslyn, a little planning will go a long way in ensuring they see the same level of service.

    Hopefully this works out well for Metro

    • Just Get Me to Work

      I also hope that this helps ease congestion for Orange line riders as I know this has been a long-standing problem. I must comment though that as a Blue line rider I have spent many, many mornings sitting outside of Rosslyn while multiple Orange line trains passed through. So it goes both ways.

    • YTK

      Empty trains? At what time of the night???? Unless youa re talking about…The..Money..Train……

  • Arlingtonian Stuck in an Alexandrian Body

    I work in Rosslyn and take the blue line from/to Van Dorn. This change validates my stopping to use metro and drive instead: it’s faster and cheaper to drive instead of using bus to Van Dorn, then Metro to Rosslyn…

    And in what world are there empty blue line trains? During rush hour I had to wait for a second or third train to pass by to be able to get onto one!

    • Max

      In what world is an agency going to use anecdotal information over factual information? In general, orange line is almost at capacity, and the blue line in Virginia has plenty to spare. Theoretically, you’ll at most be waiting an additional six minutes for a train.

    • Same commute

      My commute is very similar to yours; we need one more person and we can start a carpool for hov?

  • elsie

    I’m not convinced that this is going to help the Orange Line but as someone who waits for Blue Line trains to Largo to arrive at Rosslyn rather than squeeze onto an Orange, I’m sure hoping that it helps. Otherwise, I may start taking the bus or bike downtown. I’m going to miss the empty Blue trains at Rosslyn, that’s why I moved to Rosslyn.

    • Ben

      Not going to help Orange line? The are adding 3 extra orange line trains per hour. That’s going to help.

    • Max

      well it’ll definitely help you. You’ll have extra trains to Largo, but on the orange line in addition to the blue line.

      Should point out that the map arlnow.com is using is an old/draft. There’s no actual difference, but WMATA has revised some of the graphical oddities of the map shown.

  • SomeGuy

    It appears that the “express service between Rosslyn and Crystal City” is only in one direction in the morning (Crystal Crystal City to Rosslyn) and the reverse in the evening. I.e., Rosslyn to Crystal City in the morning is a no-go. Am I right?

  • gah i hate the rosslyn station.

    • YTK

      U N Me both. Filthy entrance with newspaper kiosks covered with bird poop and other detritus, stinky buses lined up outside, and then downstairs, crowded, with insane tourists and commuters dashing about like Cucarachas on the metro platforms.

      • JohnB2

        The worst part about Rosslyn is trying to get on an Orange Line train there. They are usually packed by the time they reach the station.

        When I worked in Rosslyn, I would take a train into the city in the afternoons and then get on an O line train at like McPhersonSq for the outbound trip home. It probably took longer but I hated trying to jam onto a train or having to wait 2-3 trains to get on. When I worked in Pentagon City, I sometimes took the Yellow to L’Enfant and got the Orange there instead of Blue to Rosslyn for the Orange.

  • YTK

    Wheee! WheeWheeWheee!
    Here comes Metro — ummm.. here comes Metro?
    Wonder how many ways they will screw this up?

  • EFC Observer

    3 more trains per hour during rush has to help the Orange Line congestion – for now.

    The mega-question, IMHO, is what will the R-B corridor portion of the line be like once the Silver Line opens. Unless there is a further reduction in Blue Line service through Rosslyn, I believe the number of trains between EFC and Rosslyn will not change when the Silver Line opens – it will be the same number that will be there beginning Monday.

    • JohnB2

      Yeah I don’t see how that’s going to work. The only solution I see is to have the Silver Line offload at WFC and turn around.

      Or maybe they think that around half of the people who get on Orange between Vienna and WFC will get on Silver instead, so they can have the same number of trains transiting the system by making around half of the Oranges into Silvers? (or whatever proportion they come up with)

      • EFC Observer

        The Silver Line trains turn around at RFK.

        As I recall, the trains going through the R-B corridor will be 50/50 (Orange/Silver).

        How full will the Silver Line trains be when they reach EFC? There are five Silver LIne stations in Phase One west of EFC.

        The # of trains coming east out of Vienna will drop by half – how full will they be when they reach EFC?

        My personal concern from the beginning was how the Silver Line will impact Arlington, particularly the stations on the east end of the R-B corridor (Clarendon; Courthouse). How much harder will it be to get on at those stations heading east in the AM rush??

        Has any reader here ever heard a real answer to this?

        • CrystalMikey

          It’s already hell getting on an Orange line train at Court House in the AM.

          • StuPendus

            It’s going to be god-awful.

      • outoftowner

        the silver line splits off before WFC

  • Juanita de Talmas

    This will suck for people who get on in the mornings at Ballston/Va.Sq./Clarendon/CH/Rosslyn and get off at Pentagon/PC/CC/DCA.

    • easily annoyed

      You know what else sucks? Excessive use of backslashes.

      • Not your bro

        Those are regular slashes. A backslash is this: \

    • JohnB2

      How? It should help the Ballston-Rosslyn folks since there will be three more trains per hour. I can see it impacting the blue liners though.

      • Justin Russo

        How? If you need to ride the Blue Line to get to your job, you will have fewer trains. “Express” buses between Rosslyn and the Pentagon just make for another transfer.

        • JohnB2

          I see. I misread JT’s post.

          Worst-case scenario: you wait 6 minutes longer for a Blue (supposedly).

  • Justin

    Just buy a car.

  • Blueliner

    I am super excited to pay 4 dollars more a day for three fewer trains per hour.

  • PaulB

    I think they started early. The train I was just on skipped stopping at Virginia Square for what they called a “schedule adjustment”.

  • Mack

    Don’t care what they do, as long as they don’t start charging me for riding my bike.

  • sophia

    This mean I will no longer take the rail. The 10E starts at Braddock and will take me to Rosslyn mornings and afternoons.

    So long suckers! No more waiting for the Blue line train cause Orange line can’t get their act together.


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