Major WMATA track work, holiday schedule to delay workers Monday

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Photo - Riders on Metro's Orange Line (Examiner file photo)
Riders on Metro's Orange Line (Examiner file photo)
Local,Transportation,Kytja Weir

Metro is planning to do major track work on Monday during what is officially a federal holiday. But for many riders, it's a work day, meaning they'll face their normal commute plus added delays, especially on the Orange, Red and Green lines.

The transit agency will be running all trains on a Saturday schedule, which means longer waits for riders. Metrobus, meanwhile, will run on a modified Saturday schedule.

Other transit closures for Monday's Veterans Day observance
• Virginia Railway Express and MARC will not be running commuter trains.
• Montgomery County's Ride On, Arlington County's ART and Fairfax County's Connector bus systems will be running on a limited schedule.

In addition, a portion of the Orange Line from East Falls Church to Clarendon will be shut down for track work. Riders passing through there will need to take a free shuttle bus.

The remaining western portion of the Orange Line will have additional delays as trains share a single track from East Falls Church to Vienna.

On the Red Line, trains will share a single track between Grosvenor and Friendship Heights stops. Trains will also share a single track at the northern end of the Green Line, from Greenbelt to College Park.

Last month, riders grumbled when the agency ran similar weekend-level service on Columbus Day, because many riders still had to commute to their jobs. They also had to weather track-work delays. Yet on that weekend, the agency had canceled all track shutdowns and only had trains sharing single tracks in a few areas.

Veterans Day, like Columbus Day, is a holiday for federal workers and many local schools. However, some companies and even some local governments such as Alexandria remain open.

Metro projects that rail ridership will be at least a third lower than on a typical weekday, said Metro spokeswoman Caroline Lukas.

The agency has to replace a switch at the Ballston stop, which will take up to 75 hours with no trains running on either track, Lukas said.

"If we were to skip Veterans Day, our next opportunity wouldn't come until Presidents Day," she said. For riders, the holiday status does come with some benefits. Rail riders will pay off-peak fares all day, and parking will be free in all Metro lots.

kweir@washingtonexaminer.com

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Kytja Weir

Staff Writer - Transportation
The Washington Examiner