For immediate release: August 29, 2023
Four Green Line stations will reopen on Saturday, Sept. 2, completing Metro’s major summer maintenance work ahead of schedule and under budgetMetro today announced that Greenbelt, College Park-U of Md, Hyattsville Crossing, and West Hyattsville stations – closed since July 22, – will reopen for rail service on Saturday, Sept. 2. The reopening will be three days ahead of schedule, and the project will be completed under budget.
While the four Green Line stations were closed, Metro installed over 220,000 linear feet of fiber-optic cable to improve radio and signal capabilities and provide the infrastructure necessary for future upgrades such as Communications-Based Train Control. Because the cables are housed in the middle of the two tracks, construction crews could only complete the work while both tracks were out of service.
During the fiber-optic cable installation, crews replaced 8,000 feet of rail, 900 rail fasteners, 1,250 wood crossties, and resurfaced 20,000 feet of track, which will improve the ride quality for customers through this section of the system. Crews also removed 60,000 feet of vegetation along the tracks, improving safety by providing a clear line of sight for train operators and maintenance workers.
“We are proud of the important infrastructure improvements we made this summer which will benefit our customers with more reliable and timely service for years to come,” Metro’s Chief of Infrastructure Andy Off. “We thank our customers for their patience as we completed this necessary work ahead of schedule and under budget to modernize our rail system. We can’t wait to see you on board!”
The Green Line work caps off an intensive summer construction effort that started in May to upgrade infrastructure necessary to maintain safe and reliable service for customers.
Summer Construction Highlights
This summer, our teams installed more than 26 miles of new rail and 72 miles of fiber-optic cables across the Orange, Green, and Silver lines. During each phase of the work, crews also installed new switch box machines and cleared vegetation that can cause disruptions and obstruct operator visibility.
Orange Line Improvements
On the eastern end of the Orange Line in Maryland, structural work and roof waterproofing on canopies at the Minnesota Ave, Deanwood, and Cheverly stations were also completed by installing over 20,000 square feet of new roofing. This provides more than 4,200 customers daily protection from the elements.
On the western end of the Orange Line in Virginia, crews installed 26 miles of new rail between Ballston-MU and Vienna stations. The new rail replaced the original 40-year-old rail, making this section of track more reliable. Customers are already seeing the benefits in this area of Orange Line. Reliability for the section of track that underwent rail replacement improved more than 50 percent in the month following the shutdown. During the closure, crews also replaced two diamond interlockings on the Orange Line.
Green Line Improvements
Upgrading the fiber-optic cables provides a foundation for advanced communications-based technology to improve service reliability and operate more efficiently. Communications-Based Train Control systems, equipment automation, real-time communications, and state-of-the-art security cameras depend on fiber optic cables supporting higher capacity and bandwidth over longer distances with less interference. Enabling these technologies will help reduce the need for future maintenance that would disrupt Metrorail service.
Shuttle Bus Service
During the station closures, Metro provided free shuttle service to help impacted customers get around. The shuttles provided about 880,000 customer trips over the course of the summer.
Return to Service
The four free shuttle routes currently operating between the closed stations will be available through end of service on Friday, Sept. 1. Free parking will remain in place at Greenbelt, College Park-U of Md, Hyattsville Crossing, and West Hyattsville stations through Monday, Sept. 4. While the stations will be open for regular service on Sept. 2, there may be some residual impacts at the Fort Totten Station Kiss & Ride lot while crews return the lot to its normal condition.
Metro's Capital Improvement Program
Metro is investing in system safety, reliability and the region's economy through its 10-year, $15 billion capital program. For the first time in Metro's history, the capital program is bolstered by dedicated funding from Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. The capital program will improve the customer experience and keep the region's infrastructure in a state of good repair by investing in new railcars and buses, improving stations and platforms, upgrading fire-suppression and emergency response systems, replacing, and repairing tracks, tunnels, bridges, signals and communications systems, rebuilding decades-old bus garages and providing modern customer amenities such as passenger information systems. In spending local taxpayer dollars for capital projects, Metro is seeking to reinvest in our hometown economy, creating jobs and encouraging participation from disadvantaged, minority-owned, and small businesses in the region.