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Red Line Back on Track Today

It's open all the way all day Sunday. The closed stretch between Fort Totten and Takoma reopened at 7 p.m. Saturday, after National Transportation Safety Board investigators did their sight testing along the tracks in the June 22 crash zone.

But all the line continues to be affected by a slowdown between Takoma and Fort Totten. Investigators still don't know why the track circuit in the crash zone malfunctions from time to time, as it did on June 22.

Because of that, Metro sends only one train through the area at a time in either direction. That creates a backup on the rest of the line, and the transit authority says riders should add a half hour to their normal travel times. That situation is likely to continue during the work week.

Nationals Game Today
It starts at Nationals Park at 1:35 p.m. There's likely to be crowding on the Green Line, at Navy Yard Station and at the L'Enfant Plaza and Gallery Place transfer stations before and after the game. The Circulator bus is operating, because it's a game day. The bus is scheduled to stop every 10 minutes at New Jersey Avenue and M Street SW, by the Metro station entrance on the eastern side of the station.

Other Metrorail Delays
The regular track maintenance schedule for this weekend includes work on the Red, Orange, Blue and Yellow lines. (Only the Green Line is spared.) Trains will take turns on a single track to get around the work zones. This will add at least a half hour to the regular travel times. On weekends, don't use Metro's Trip Planner to calculate a trip on a line where there's track maintenance. It won't give you the right trip time. For the full details on the track work along the various lines, use this link.

By Robert Thomson  |  July 19, 2009; 11:39 AM ET
Categories:  Metro  
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Next: Red Line Still Slow This Week


Time to tear up that entire stretch of track and replace every single component there. That's a better use of funds that some of the other projects Metro is planning.

Posted by: WashingtonDame | July 19, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

I wish the metro system could do a better job of handling maintenance delays. I tried taking the western side of the red line on Saturday afternoon and evening, and both times I experienced major delays. First, the train was 10 minutes late to the Twinbrook station, and then we were stuck at White Flint for an additional 40 minutes before I just got off the train and got a ride from a friend. At that time they still weren't giving us any indication of whether we'd be there for 5 minutes or 30 minutes.

I know these sorts of delays will happen, but when they're for scheduled maintenance you'd think they could schedule things better. If they're only going to let trains through from Grosvenor to Friendship Heights once an hour, then they should post when that train is run, and try to stick closely to that schedule.

Instead, metro just posts a notice on their website saying they're single-tracking on the red line, and to expect delays. The thing is, they say this all the time and usually the delay is only 5-10 minutes.

Why can't metro run special maintenance schedules on days like that, and actually update their website with accurate arrival times on their trip planner? There are only so many places in the system where trains can switch tracks, so it shouldn't be too difficult to schedule all the possibilities (I'm sure it's computerized anyway). That way, if there's going to be hour-long delays at least we'll know, so we can make other arrangements if the delays get too excessive.

Posted by: reggie14 | July 19, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

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