Author Topic: If you thought Metro couldn't get any worse....  (Read 822 times)

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Offline MarquisDeSade

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Amazing what happens when you stop maintenance for a decade

You mean decades, plural. My wife can tell some great stories about her time trying to help WMATA unfreak itself. Way too many jobs program leftovers actually doing the work and clueless management don’t help but when they get money they piss it away.

Offline bluestreak

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It would take all day but there are so many things wrong with the system  ....  going back to the design in the 60s.

The main one being that we live in a country that doesn’t prioritize mass transit, for whatever reason.

Offline mitlen

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The main one being that we live in a country that doesn’t prioritize mass transit, for whatever reason.

This system was designed with quaint in mind.    It's not functional to move large numbers to a lot of places.     Much of that is due to the mindset you mention goin' into the project.

Offline HalfSmokes

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The main one being that we live in a country that doesn’t prioritize mass transit, for whatever reason.

I think it’s more a matter of new taking priority over maintenance be it metro, the road system, or municipal utilities

Online Slateman

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It’s a symptom of a larger systemic problem.

Not really. They have horribly mismanaged the funding and flat out refused to conduct the maintenance that was required. It's not a symptom. It's the result.

Online JCA-CrystalCity

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I think it’s more a matter of new taking priority over maintenance be it metro, the road system, or municipal utilities
capital expenditures and expansion lets a pol say he or she delivered.  Thus, things like the Blue line expansion to Franconia and Springfield.  Fairfax and Alexandria pols can point to the pretty new station, not bothering to point to the commuter rail stop right next to those stations.  Those stations are 20 years old, I think, and they need platform work?  A pol doesn't get points for saying "we operated smoothly this winter due to timely maintenance."  It's the edifice complex for elected officials.

Offline Count Walewski

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Yikes - I know a guy who just bought a house near Van Dorn Street metro and he's screwed now. At least people in Old Town can take a bus to Crystal City and people at Franconia-Springfield can take VRE.

I'm very fortunate to have ended up living in a neighborhood with excellent bus service.

Offline 1995hoo

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Yikes - I know a guy who just bought a house near Van Dorn Street metro and he's screwed now. At least people in Old Town can take a bus to Crystal City and people at Franconia-Springfield can take VRE.

I'm very fortunate to have ended up living in a neighborhood with excellent bus service.

He can probably take the DASH bus to King Street. I believe one of the routes that serves Van Dorn also serves King; there's also a route along Pickett Street that serves King (a former colleague used that one, so I know of it, but I don't know details). The VRE stops at the Amtrak station at King Street, but the VRE fare is pricey at $7.00 one-way. (The Fairfax Connector runs from Van Dorn to the Springfield Metro, but that takes too long to be a realistic option if you're headed inbound via the VRE. Makes more sense to go to King.)

I think there may be a DASH bus route from somewhere in the Landmark area that serves the Pentagon, too, but I'm not sure. Easy enough to find out, though.

I live off Van Dorn south of the Beltway in Kingstowne. Don't know what my work situation will be next summer, but the thought of using the Green Line from Branch Avenue has crossed my mind, as has the notion of picking up slugs. During SafeTrack, there was a nonstop Fairfax Connector route from the Springfield Metro to the Pentagon Metro via the I-395 express lanes. Hopefully they do that again, because this time I'd use it. Last time my wife and I just drove, but she's no longer working downtown.

Offline tomterp

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capital expenditures and expansion lets a pol say he or she delivered.  Thus, things like the Blue line expansion to Franconia and Springfield.  Fairfax and Alexandria pols can point to the pretty new station, not bothering to point to the commuter rail stop right next to those stations.  Those stations are 20 years old, I think, and they need platform work?  A pol doesn't get points for saying "we operated smoothly this winter due to timely maintenance."  It's the edifice complex for elected officials.

Is military spending any different?  Gobs of $ for shiny new toys while otherwise serviceable assets crumble.

Offline mitlen

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WASHINGTON — A whistleblower lawsuit was filed more than a year before the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and contractor Capital Rail Constructors say they learned that defective concrete panels were installed at five new Silver Line stations   ...

...  The suit was filed under seal in March 2016 by Nathan Davidheiser, who worked for Universal Concrete Products, the subcontractor that produced the faulty concrete panels. Davidheiser said he was directed by his employer to lie about quality control tests.

https://wtop.com/tracking-metro-24-7/2018/05/silver-line-concrete-problems-flagged-year-earlier-whistleblower-lawsuit/

Offline OldChelsea

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WASHINGTON — A whistleblower lawsuit was filed more than a year before the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and contractor Capital Rail Constructors say they learned that defective concrete panels were installed at five new Silver Line stations   ...

...  The suit was filed under seal in March 2016 by Nathan Davidheiser, who worked for Universal Concrete Products, the subcontractor that produced the faulty concrete panels. Davidheiser said he was directed by his employer to lie about quality control tests.

https://wtop.com/tracking-metro-24-7/2018/05/silver-line-concrete-problems-flagged-year-earlier-whistleblower-lawsuit/

Saw a story on that in the online Post this morning...this system just lurches from crisis to crisis.

About this Silver line extension generally: I really think this could turn into quite a mixed blessing for those of us who fly to/from Dulles. The Dulles station is going to be a bit of a hike from the terminal - fortunately there will at least be a tunnel under the main car park so at least we won't have to walk through the rain/snow/ice and dodge cars (would be nice if there were travelators too). Persons arriving on West Coast redeyes or from South America will step onto trains already crowded with morning commuters; also expect crowding in mid/late afternoon when the bulk of international flights arrive and depart (many on aircraft carrying 400+ passengers). Like to stand up all the way between the airport and downtown DC/Arlington? The old system of Washington Flyer buses from West Falls Church station worked just fine, as does the present system of buses from Wiehle-Reston East...the Dulles Metro station will be interesting to check out but does not appear entirely promising.

Offline mitlen

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Saw a story on that in the online Post this morning...this system just lurches from crisis to crisis.

About this Silver line extension generally: I really think this could turn into quite a mixed blessing for those of us who fly to/from Dulles. The Dulles station is going to be a bit of a hike from the terminal - fortunately there will at least be a tunnel under the main car park so at least we won't have to walk through the rain/snow/ice and dodge cars (would be nice if there were travelators too). Persons arriving on West Coast redeyes or from South America will step onto trains already crowded with morning commuters; also expect crowding in mid/late afternoon when the bulk of international flights arrive and depart (many on aircraft carrying 400+ passengers). Like to stand up all the way between the airport and downtown DC/Arlington? The old system of Washington Flyer buses from West Falls Church station worked just fine, as does the present system of buses from Wiehle-Reston East...the Dulles Metro station will be interesting to check out but does not appear entirely promising.

(This is a trek you probably know about  ... )

I took the "tube/underground" from Heathrow to Glouster RD.    It's a mere 15 miles (or so).    I had a big suitcase and some camera gear.    Boarded right at the airport.    At Glouster RD (at the time), everybody had to take a lift to street level.     I was young(er) and the London Underground is competent.    The whole thing was a pain in the tukas (sp).      I can't imagine walkin' to the Dulles Station (or riding) and takin' the Silver Line to DC (25 miles or so).    If you're lucky, you won't have to transfer to the Red/Yellow, etc. line to reach your hotel.    The Silver Line is a boondoggle.   

For some feds and private folks, wait 'til you job/agency moves to Ashburn.     It'll be a day trip.

Offline OldChelsea

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(This is a trek you probably know about  ... )

I took the "tube/underground" from Heathrow to Glouster RD.    It's a mere 15 miles (or so).    I had a big suitcase and some camera gear.    Boarded right at the airport.    At Glouster RD (at the time), everybody had to take a lift to street level.     I was young(er) and the London Underground is competent.[...]

I've done that several times on my annual London trips. The advantage of the Piccadilly line's rolling stock is that extra space has been set off by each central door for luggage. However, since the Piccadilly line stop by my hotel (Russell Square) requires going up steps followed by a lift trip, in more recent years I've switched over to the more expensive (but way faster) Heathrow Express followed by a short-ish cab ride from Paddington.

Offline dcpatti

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I've done that several times on my annual London trips. The advantage of the Piccadilly line's rolling stock is that extra space has been set off by each central door for luggage. However, since the Piccadilly line stop by my hotel (Russell Square) requires going up steps followed by a lift trip, in more recent years I've switched over to the more expensive (but way faster) Heathrow Express followed by a short-ish cab ride from Paddington.


If you’re traveling from LHR to central London, http://www.blackberrycars.com

£39 for airport pickup and drop-off at most central area hotels. £30 for hotel pickup and ride back to airport. If you’re traveling with a companion and don’t book your HEX tickets 90 days in advance, it’ll be £44 plus your tube fare. Even booking 90 days out, it’s still £24 for two HEX tickets plus another however much for the tube and it’s totally worth it to me to pay a little more and have a nice car service and not have to drag my bags through Paddington Station in the middle of the morning commute rush.

Offline OldChelsea

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If you’re traveling from LHR to central London, http://www.blackberrycars.com

£39 for airport pickup and drop-off at most central area hotels. £30 for hotel pickup and ride back to airport. If you’re traveling with a companion and don’t book your HEX tickets 90 days in advance, it’ll be £44 plus your tube fare. Even booking 90 days out, it’s still £24 for two HEX tickets plus another however much for the tube and it’s totally worth it to me to pay a little more and have a nice car service and not have to drag my bags through Paddington Station in the middle of the morning commute rush.

Doesn't look like an option in my case since I don't have a smartphone (let alone a Blackberry). Pricing looks competitive though - Heathrow Express is 25 pounds one-way.

But I'd still be using the Tube (Piccadilly line, only 7 pounds last time I looked) if there weren't the matter of lugging my stuff up all those steps at Russell Square. Other things being equal it's great for when you're coming into town from the airport - less so going out to the airport since the line goes through Bloomsbury and a number of other neighbourhoods with considerable hotel concentration. It's usually standing room only from Russell Square on out, going to the airport.

Offline mitlen

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Doesn't look like an option in my case since I don't have a smartphone (let alone a Blackberry).

I'm not alone.    :)

Offline imref

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