Metro News Release

For immediate release: March 19, 2010

Share Print


Metro seeks public input on options to close FY2011 budget gap
Options include fare increase, service reductions, changes to MetroAccess Service

Metro is seeking public input on proposals for how the transit authority should close a $189 million budget gap in fiscal year 2011. The projected deficit is largely due to increased expenses and losses in revenue from lower than expected ridership.

The complete public hearing docket with detailed information about proposals to balance the budget can be found at http://www.wmata.com/community_outreach/B10-2_landing/B10-2_landing.cfm

Members of the public are asked to comment on proposals to close the budget shortfall at six public hearings in March and April. All hearings are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., with an open house conducted prior to each hearing at 6:30 p.m. The hearings will take place as follows:

Monday, March 22
Hearing No. 548
Oakton High School Lecture Hall
2900 Sutton Road
Vienna, VA

Wednesday, March 24
Hearing No. 549
St. Francis Xavier Church, Bailey Room
2800 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE
Washington, DC

Monday, March 29
Hearing No. 550
Mt. Calvary Baptist Church
5120 Whitfield Chapel Road
Lanham, MD
Shuttle service to the hearing will be provided by Prince George's County TheBus from the east side bus bays of the New Carrollton Metrorail station.

Wednesday, March 31
Hearing No. 551
Arlington County Board Room, 3rd Floor
2100 Clarendon Boulevard
Arlington, VA

Thursday, April 1
Hearing No. 552
All Souls Unitarian Church, Pierce Hall
1500 Harvard Street, NW
Washington, DC

Thursday, April 1
Hearing No. 553
Montgomery County Executive Office Building, Cafeteria
101 Monroe Street (entrance on Jefferson Street)
Rockville, MD

Detailed directions to each hearing location can be found at http://www.wmata.com/community_outreach/B10-2_landing/hearing_site.cfm.

In addition to the hearings, Metro has created an online questionnaire to get public input about the budget options at www.wmata.com/survey.cfm. The questionnaire takes about five to 10 minutes to complete, and the results will be incorporated into the final staff report to the Board due in April.

Proposals to balance the budget include the widest array of options possible to help the Board of Directors get the public input they need before they make a final decision on the budget in June. Options include a combination of fare increases, Metrorail and Metrobus service reductions, changes to the MetroAccess fare structure and service area allowed under the Americans with Disabilities Act, departmental and staff reductions, additional contributions from the jurisdictions that fund Metro, and the use of capital funds to pay for preventive maintenance.

In addition to the General Manager’s proposed budget, the Metro Board is including suggestions from the Riders’Advisory Council, other rider groups and ATU Local 689 for the public’s consideration during the hearings.

Not all of the options presented are necessary to balance the budget. Any proposed fare increases, service reductions and changes to MetroAccess service would start June 27, 2010.

Proposals to increase fares and passes

Following are the specific proposals to increase fares and passes.

Metrorail fare increases

  • Increase the Metrorail peak period boarding charge from $1.65 to up to $2;
  • Increase the Metrorail maximum peak period fare from $4.50 to up to $5:45;
  • Implement a surcharge of up to 50 cents  for “peak-of-the-peak” trips from 7:30 to 9 a.m. and 4:30 to 6 p.m. weekdays;
  • Increase the Metrorail off-peak boarding charge from $1.35 to up to $1.65; and
  • Increase Metrorail passes so the price is consistent with boarding charges.

Metrobus fare increases

  • Increase the Metrobus cash boarding charge from $1.35 to up to $1.70;
  • Increase the Metrobus SmarTrip® boarding charge from $1.25 to up to $1.60;
  • Implement a surcharge of up to 50 cents  for “peak-of-the-peak” trips from 7:30 to 9 a.m. and 4:30 to 6 p.m. weekdays;
  • Increase the express Metrobus cash boarding charge from $3.10 to up to $4.10;
  • Increase the express Metrobus SmarTrip® boarding charge from $3 to up to $4;
  • Increase the SmarTrip® boarding charge on the Dulles (5A) and BWI (B30) shuttles from $3.10 to up to $6; and
  • Increase Metrobus passes so the price is consistent with boarding charges.

MetroAccess fare increases

  • Increase the MetroAccess base fare from $2.50 to up to twice the comparable fixed route fare;
  • Increase the supplemental fare for service provided in Zone 1 from $1 to up to $5;
  • Increase the supplemental fare for service provided in Zone 2 from $2 to up to $10;
  • Increase the supplemental fare for service provided in Zone 3 from $3 to up to $15; and
  • Increase the supplemental fare for service provided in Zone 4 from $4 to up to $20.

Other fare/fee increases

  • Increase all daily parking rates by up to $1.15;
  • Increase the hours that Metro charges for daily parking beyond the current schedule and implement parking fees 24 hours a day, Monday through Friday;
  • Increase the fee for reserved parking from $55 to up to $65;
  • Increase the bicycle locker yearly rental fee from $80 to up to $200; and
  • Institute a special fare of no more than five times the normal rate for fares and passes on Metrobus and Metrorail and to charge up to $25 for parking for special events such as a Presidential Inauguration, historic or political event, major sporting or entertainment event and to implement special emergency fares.

Proposals to reduce Metrorail service

Following are the specific proposals to reduce Metrorail service, which include increasing intervals between trains, closing one entrance at stations with multiple entrances during evenings and weekends, and reducing the hours of Metrorail service.

  • The increasing of intervals between trains would work as follows:
    • Reduce weekday service between 6 and 6:30 a.m. by increasing intervals between trains from six to eight minutes;
    • Reduce weekday midday and evening service by increasing intervals between trains from 12 to 15 minutes during weekday midday hours and from 20 to 30 minutes during weekday evenings; and
    • Reduce weekend service by increasing intervals between trains from 12 to 15 minutes during the day Saturdays, from 15 to 20 minutes during the day on Sundays, and from 20 to 30 minutes at night on Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Reduce weekday rush hour service by operating only six-car trains.
  • Reduce service on holidays and during the holiday season by operating fewer trains.
  • Restructure rush-hour service on the Red Line from 2.5 to three-minute intervals between Grosvenor-Strathmore and Silver Spring and from five to six-minute intervals between Silver Spring and Glenmont and between Grosvenor-Strathmore and Shady Grove.
  • Close one Metrorail station entrance at stations with low ridership and multiple entrances during evenings and weekends:
    • One station entrance at the following five Metrorail stations would close at 8 p.m. weeknights: Friendship Heights, King Street, McPherson Square, Shaw-Howard U and Stadium-Armory Metrorail stations; and
    • One station entrance at the following 10 Metrorail stations would close on weekends: Anacostia, Friendship Heights, King Street, L’Enfant Plaza, Navy Yard, New York Ave, Shaw-Howard U, Silver Spring, Stadium-Armory and U St/African-Amer Civil War Memorial/Cardozo.
  • Close the following three Metrorail stations with low ridership on weekends: Cheverly, Deanwood and Morgan Boulevard.
  • Reduce the hours of Metrorail service:
    • Open the Metrorail system at 5:30 a.m. instead of 5 a.m. on weekdays;
    • Open the Metrorail system at 8 a.m. instead of 7 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays; and
    • Close the Metrorail system at midnight, 1 or 2 a.m. instead of 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.
  • Reduce Yellow Line Metrorail service late night weekdays and on weekends to a Metrorail shuttle between Huntington and King Street.
  • Eliminate the Yellow Line extension to Fort Totten.

Proposals to reduce Metrobus service

Following are proposals to reduce Metrobus service, which include reducing the frequency of service on certain bus routes and eliminating service on routes or portions of routes with low ridership:

  • Reduce the frequency of service at certain times on the following bus routes: 7B, 7C, 7E, 7X, 7W, 8X, 8W, 8Z, 9E, 10A, 10B, 16G-W, 52, 53, 54, 62, 64, 70, 80, 94, A12, B8, G2, G8, H6, H8, L1, L2, N6, P6, V8, W2 and W3.
  • Alter or eliminate certain trips on the following bus routes: 1C, B24, C4, C11, C22, C26, D12, D14, F2, F12, F13, H12, H13, J1, J2, J4, J11, J12, K6, K11, K12, K13, P12, R2, R4, T2, V12, V14, V15 and Y9.
  • Eliminate entire routes or portions of routes on the following bus routes: 1E, 2T, 3T, 13A, 13B, 15M, 16G-W, 17A, 17B, 17F, 17M, 18P, 18R, 18S, 23C, 24T, 42, 52, 53, 54, 60, 80, A9, B27, B29, B31, C8, C12, C14, H1, J1, K1, L4, M2, N3, N8, P2, P17, P18, P19, V5, W13, W14, X1 and X3.
  • Restructure service on the following bus routes: 7W, 7X, 16F, 16H, 16W, 18P, 25C, 28G, 28T, 28X, C2, C4, C8, E6/M4, F4, F6, H2, H3, H6, J5, N2, N4, N6, R3, R12, T16 and T17.
  • Eliminate overlap with local service on the following bus routes: 7A, 18E, 18F, 29K, 29N, 38B, and 70.

Proposals to change MetroAccess service

  • Reduce the MetroAccess service area (within Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines) to reflect actual fixed-route bus and rail service areas reflecting the actual time, day and location;
  • Charge a premium for service provided to locations beyond the ¾-mile corridor around fixed-route services. The premium for zones would be up to $5 for zone 1, up to $10 for zone 2, up to $15 for zone 3 and up to $20 for zone 4;
  • Align the MetroAccess fare structure to the maximum allowed under the ADA definition, which is twice the equivalent of fixed-route fare; and
  • Restrict the use of the Free Ride Program to only those MetroAccess certified persons with conditional eligibility.

 How to submit written comments

Written statements and exhibits may be sent to the Office of the Secretary, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, 600 Fifth Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001, or e-mailed to public-hearing-testimony@wmata.com.  Please reference the hearing number. Submissions must be received by 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 6.

How to register to speak at the public hearing

To establish a witness list for the public hearings, individuals and representatives of organizations who wish to be heard at the hearings are asked to provide in writing their name, address, telephone number and organization affiliation, if any, to Office of the Secretary, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, 600 Fifth Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20001. Alternatively, requests to speak may be faxed to 202-962-1133 or e-mailed to public-hearing-testimony@wmata.com. Please submit only one speaker’s name per letter and reference the hearing number. Lists of individual speakers will not be accepted. Others present at the hearing may be heard after people who have registered have spoken. Public officials will be heard first and will be allowed five minutes each to make their presentations. All other speakers will be allowed two minutes each. Relinquishing of time by one speaker to another will not be permitted.

The locations of all public hearings are wheelchair accessible. Any individual who requires special assistance such as a sign language interpreter or additional accommodation to participate in the public hearings, or who requires these materials in an alternate format, should contact Danise Peña at 202-962-2511 or TTY: 202-638-3780 as soon as possible in order for Metro to make necessary arrangements.

News release issued at 2:16 pm, March 19, 2010.


© 2014 Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority       Privacy Policy and Legal Disclaimer

   BrowseAloud icon