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Dr. Gridlock
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Posted at 06:02 PM ET, 04/15/2011

Metro to Caps game tonight

The Washington Capitals will be in playoff action again tonight at the Verizon Center. Metro’s your best bet for getting to and from the game, but fans need to be aware of issues related to crowding and to the weekend track work that begins this evening.

Let’s start with a letter I got about the escalators at Gallery Place Station, below Verizon Center.

Dear Dr. Gridlock:

When I arrived at Gallery Place at about 7 p.m. Wednesday on the Red Line and attempted to exit the Seventh and F streets exit, all the up escalators were turned off, despite the fact that 20,000 plus fans were headed to the Caps game, many of them on Metro.

When I left Verizon Center and attempted to board at Gallery Place at Ninth and G, the down escalator was turned off with 20,000 plus fans leaving the game.

When I asked the kiosk attendant why that was, she said she was ordered to do that by her supervisors. Why would they order such a counter intuitive and customer unfriendly thing?

Bill McCloskey, Bethesda

Metro spokesman Steven Taubenkibel checked back on the status of the escalators Wednesday night:

On Wednesday, he said, two escalators at Seventh and F were not working because of mechanical problems. They were repaired and returned to service at 11:30 p.m. At Ninth and G, one unit also was out because of mechanical problems. That one was returned to service the next morning.

I thought that Metro might have turned off the escalators as a safety measure in anticipation of the large crowds, but Taubenkibel said that was not the case. They were just busted.

This afternoon, Metro is reporting on its escalator status page that four escalators are out of service at Gallery Place:

Ninth and G Street entrance: Escalator between street and mezzanine

Seventh and H Street entrance: Escalator between upper platform to Glenmont and the lower platform for Yellow/Green Line.

Seventh and G Street entrance: Escalator between mezzanine and platform to Shady Grove

Seventh and G Street entrance: Escalator between mezzanine and platform to Shady Grove

Nearby stations

Remember the other stations in easy walking distance: Metro Center, Judiciary Square, Mount Vernon Square and Archives. A Red Line rider in the direction of Glenmont might have a better chance of getting a seat on a post-game train by walking over to Metro Center. A Red Line rider heading toward Shady Grove might find the trains less crowded at Judiciary Square. Green and Yellow Line riders heading north might have better luck at Archives, while those heading south might try Mount Vernon Square.

Track work

After the game, be prepared to encounter delays for track maintenance on the Orange, Blue and Red lines. The most significant issue will be on the Orange Line. Metro is closing the five stations at the eastern end at 8 p.m. Trains that normally would take passengers to New Carrollton will go only as far as Stadium-Armory, where riders continuing eastbound will need to board free shuttle buses. This could add as much as 40 minutes to a trip. See more details on the track work delays.

By  |  06:02 PM ET, 04/15/2011

Categories:  Metro

 
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