Metro will open at 5 a.m. Saturday, add trains to accommodate march
Metro GM/CEO Paul J. Wiedefeld today announced that the Metrorail system will open two hours early -- at 5 a.m. -- this Saturday and add up to two dozen additional trains to accommodate those attending the Women's March on Washington.
Metrorail service will run on an "enhanced Saturday schedule" with no track work on any line. Under the schedule, trains will depart stations at the end of each line every 12 minutes, resulting in service every 4 to 6 minutes at all stations in Downtown DC.
For additional capacity on Saturday, Metro plans to add more than a dozen trains on the Red and Orange lines to accommodate expected high ridership traveling to the march. In addition, Metro will add trains between Franconia-Springfield and Greenbelt, running on the "Rush Plus" route via the Yellow Line Bridge from approximately 6 to 10 a.m. and 1 to 5 p.m.
"This is another example of how vital Metro is for the region and of our unique role in transporting people from across the country to national events in our capital city," said WMATA Chair Jack Evans. "Metro heard from lots of customers about the need for additional service this weekend and worked quickly to respond."
As a reminder, on Inauguration Day (Friday, January 20), Metro will open early at 4 a.m. and run 17 consecutive hours of near rush-hour service levels.
Metrobus will operate a regular Saturday schedule. Some routes serving the downtown area will detour, split or truncate. List of routes and service changes.
Metro is encouraging march participants to take note of the following travel tips when traveling Saturday:
- Consider using L'Enfant Plaza or Capitol South. While Metro's Federal Center SW station is closest to the march gathering location, participants should consider using the adjacent stations of L'Enfant Plaza or Capitol South to avoid crowding.
- Buy/Load SmarTrip in Advance to Avoid Lines. Each Metro rider is encouraged to purchase a SmarTrip card in advance and ensure that it is loaded with enough fare value for all segments of travel. (Each Metro rider age 5 and up needs his or her own SmarTrip card to enter and exit the system.) SmarTrip cards are available at all Metrorail stations, and at CVS/Pharmacy and Giant stores throughout the Washington, DC, area. More info
- Sign up for Inauguration Text Alerts from Metro. To get text alerts regarding Metroservice changes, parking lot status and other important updates, text POTUS to 90360.
Other Metro Inauguration News
Union Station Entrance Closure Thursday Evening
Metro is advising riders who travel through Union Station to be prepared for heavy station congestion and pedestrian restrictions on Thursday evening due to an event in the main station. Metro has been advised that the Massachusetts Ave NW exit to the station will be closed for security reasons starting at approximately 7 p.m. All customers entering or exiting Metro will be directed to the First Street exit. Riders connecting to Amtrak, MARC or VRE trains are encouraged to build in additional time to travel through the station.
No Bicycles or Large Coolers on Friday or Saturday
Due to expected ridership, bicycles and large coolers will not be permitted on Metrorail on either Friday, January 20, or Saturday, January 21. In addition, attendees traveling to Inaugural events should take note of prohibited items listed on the U.S. Secret Service website.
In an effort to provide additional charter bus parking to supplement the District of Columbia's capacity, Metro has made two surface parking lots available for charter bus use on Saturday, January 21, only. These lots, located at Greenbelt and Landover stations, offer a combined capacity for approximately 100 buses, and will be added to the charter bus parking inventory managed by the District of Columbia. Advance reservation, payment, proof of insurance and indemnification are required. Due to safety and security concerns, Metro does not permit privately operated tour/charter buses to use roadways designated for transit bus use at any time. Tour/charter bus parking is not permitted at any other station except as noted above. For information or to reserve bus parking, visit the U Street Parking webpage.
Reminder: Metrobus and MetroAccess Service Impacts
On Friday and Saturday, Metrobus and MetroAccess customers should be prepared for extensive detours and extended travel time due to road closures near the National Mall and Inaugural events. MetroAccess subscription trips are cancelled on Friday. Visit wmata.com/inauguration for details.