Metro News Release

For immediate release: March 21, 2008

Metro installing more red platform edge lights

It’s getting a lot easier for Metrorail riders to know when the next train is arriving.

The transit authority is installing new red platform edge lights at 16 stations during the next two months – Navy Yard, Waterfront-SEU, Archives Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter, Mt. Vernon Sq/7th St-Convention Center, Foggy Bottom-GWU, Capitol South, Farragut West, Federal Triangle, McPherson Square, Federal Center SW, Woodley Park-Zoo/Adams Morgan, Dupont Circle, Farragut North, Judiciary Square, and Fort Totten (Red Line platform) Metrorail stations.

Last year, Metro began to install new red LED (light-emitting diode) platform edge lights as a pilot at the Gallery Place-Chinatown, Fort Totten, L’Enfant Plaza, Metro Center, Smithsonian, Union Station, Stadium-Armory and Pentagon Metrorail stations.

“The pilot program was a success. Our customers noticed the flashes of red and stepped away from the edge of the platform,”said John Catoe, Metro’s General Manager. “I’ve observed customers stop, and keep a safer distance from the edge of the platform, and that’s why we’re installing the new lights.”

Each lamp contains 34 LED bulbs, consumes approximately 10 watts of power and is estimated to last 10 to 12 years. The bulb burns steady at 50 percent power and flashes at 100 percent power when a train approaches or is at the station.

It costs the transit authority up to $400,000 annually to relamp and power the existing incandescent platform edge lights.

Each red LED bulb or lamp costs $54 and the white LED bulbs, which were tested last year at the Rosslyn Metrorail station, cost $108 a piece.

It takes more than 290,000 bulbs, lamps and tubes and costs up to $11 million a year to light the Metrorail system, including stations, parking garages, bus garages and rail yards. Metro is currently focusing its stepped-up lighting efforts on rail stations, which have more than 73,836 lights.

News release issued at 10:34 am, March 21, 2008.