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Posted at 6:55 PM ET, 11/10/2010

Why was there no consideration of the Silver Line's security?

By Randy Atkins, Vienna

For several years, I have expressed the concerns raised in the Nov. 5 Metro story "Audit: Metro's Silver Line lacks security features." I contacted many who could have made a difference. I stressed the obvious: that the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority was about to build (and is now building) a vulnerable overhead rail above a dozen lanes of the Beltway, next to one of the biggest shopping malls in the country, just outside of the nation's capital, right near the heart of the U.S. intelligence community.

None of the politicians or journalists I contacted seemed to care, and The Post story made it apparent that those building the project didn't think much about security, either. Now, as the story said, the addition of "missing security features . . . will probably increase the project's cost."

For a relatively modest extra upfront cost, we could have had a much safer - not to mention less obtrusive, less noisy, less ugly - underground rail through Tysons Corner. The terrorist scenarios one could imagine in a tunnel aren't nearly as bad, nor as easy to bring about, as those with the aerial structure that's being built. Short-term thinking has its pitfalls. No doubt about it, we're building a terrorist target that had better get round-the-clock security.

By Randy Atkins, Vienna  | November 10, 2010; 6:55 PM ET
Categories:  DMV, Fenty, HotTopic, Metro, Virginia, development, traffic, transportation  
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