Metro to complete Platform Improvement Project, launch new service, and advance safety-critical construction initiatives
Part of multi-billion-dollar capital investment in 2022
As Metro prepares for the opening of both the Silver Line Extension and Potomac Yard Station in 2022, the transit authority will also advance its intensive state of good repair program. This includes completion of the multi-year platform reconstruction effort at 20 outdoor rail stations and several large-scale construction projects, including a major rehabilitation of the Yellow Line’s Potomac River tunnel and bridge crossing.
Metro will soon introduce new service on the Silver Line – including six new rail stations, 12 miles of track, and a new rail yard. And this summer, platform reconstruction and station improvements will be underway on the eastern end of the Orange Line.
In September, the construction of new tracks to connect the future Potomac Yard Station to the mainline tracks will be completed, along with performance and safety testing required prior to the start of service. The station is expected to open this fall.
A major rehab of the Yellow Line tunnel and bridge will begin concurrently in September. Metro’s chief engineer has identified the steel-lined tunnel near L’Enfant Plaza as the agency’s top structural priority, with repairs needed to stop water intrusion and strengthen the tunnel lining. Metro will also remove and rewire miles of critical communications cabling used by multiple jurisdictions and make repairs to the Yellow Line bridge. The project and associated bridge closure is expected to begin in September and be completed in spring 2023.
“In order to maintain a healthy system, Metro needs an aggressive capital program. We will continue working with our regional partners to advance construction and rehabilitation projects that ensure a state of good repair for critical regional infrastructure. While service outages can be disruptive, we know they are foundational for maintaining safe and reliable service,” said Metro General Manager and Chief Executive Officer Paul J. Wiedefeld. “We have a lot of work to do this year and we will tackle major state of good repair projects while also introducing new service. We are committed to providing our customers with reliable alternatives and frequent updates on the work as it is conducted.”
The capital project schedule for 2022 includes the following projects with rail service impacts:
- Platform Improvement Project, May 28 – Sept. 5, 2022*: New Carrollton, Landover, Cheverly, Deanwood and Minnesota Ave stations will be closed with no rail service. Free shuttle bus service will be available at the five closed stations. Stadium-Armory Station will be the eastern terminus of the Orange Line during this time.
Metro will demolish and reconstruct the aging concrete platforms at three outdoor stations -- New Carrollton, Landover and Cheverly. Two adjacent stations – Deanwood and Minnesota Ave – will also be closed during this time and will receive upgraded safety and customer experience improvements. Taking advantage of the shutdown, at the same time aerial structures will be repaired and strengthened at numerous locations in the area. Learn more about the project and summer 2022 travel alternatives, and sign up for updates at wmata.com/platforms.
- Potomac Yard Station, Sept. 10 – Oct. 22, 2022: Potomac Yard Station construction will require a six-week shutdown of rail service south of Washington National Airport station to build new tracks that “tie-in” the new station with the existing Metrorail system. Engineering, testing, and commissioning needed to integrate the track, power, communications and signal systems into the system will also be conducted during this time. This will be followed by additional testing and training to determine when service can begin.
- Yellow Line Tunnel and Bridge Rehab, beginning Sept. 10, 2022: This work will require a shutdown between Pentagon and L’Enfant Plaza stations, closing the Yellow Line crossing of the Potomac River for seven to eight months. During that time, crews will rehabilitate the Yellow Line Bridge spanning the Potomac River and repair the steel lined tunnels between Pentagon and L’Enfant Plaza stations, both of which date to original construction more than 40 years ago. Exact service plans will be released later this year as construction plans are finalized.
Additional work will be completed in 2022 during weekend shutdowns and single tracking, including:
- Replacement of drainage pumping stations and discharge line piping at critical locations, including Medical Center, Wheaton, Metro Center, Federal Triangle and L’Enfant Plaza stations
- Tunnel leak mitigation work between Silver Spring and Forest Glen, and between Tenleytown and Friendship Heights
- Tunnel ventilation pilot project’s final phase between Cleveland Park and Woodley Park; part of Metro’s effort to improve tunnel safety by upgrading the ventilation system and responsive to a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) directive following the 2015 smoke incident at L’Enfant Plaza
Construction schedules are tentative and subject to change. As Metro works with the local jurisdictions to plan travel alternatives and communicate with customers and communities, additional information on service impacts, free bus shuttles, supplemental bus service, and other mitigation measures and travel options will be provided to the public approximately three months prior to the start of service impacts. Extensive outreach campaigns are conducted for all major projects to ensure customers and community members are aware of the upcoming changes and can plan ahead.
Metro’s Capital Program
Through a 10-year, $15 billion capital program, Metro is investing in system safety, dependability, and the region's economy. The capital program totals more than $2 billion in Fiscal Year 2023 and is now one of the largest in the U.S. transit industry. The program advances projects to enhance the customer experience by investing in station and platform improvements, new railcars and buses, 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 digital passenger information systems. The capital program is supported by dedicated funding from Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia, which allows Metro to reinvest in the local economy, creating jobs and encouraging participation from disadvantaged, minority-owned, and small businesses in the region.