Metro’s repair program will disrupt service on four lines this weekend. The disruptions include use of buses to replace trains on a western segment of the Orange Line, some track sharing around work zones and a route change.
While Metro isn’t asking for votes on this, I do wonder which type of disruption creates more problems for riders: the single-track style or the substitution of buses for trains along portions of lines. In my Sunday column, I had several letters from riders who were pleased with Metro’s performance when segments of lines were shut.
Here are the details on the weekend plan.
Orange Line: From 10 p.m. Friday through the train system’s midnight closing Sunday, free shuttle buses will replace trains between East Falls Church and West Falls Church. Crews will be working on signals for the Dulles Silver Line, which will connect with the Orange Line in this zone.
Orange Line trains will operate every 20 minutes between Vienna and West Falls Church and on normal weekend schedules between East Falls Church and New Carrollton.
Riders going through the work zone should allow 20 to 30 minutes for extra travel time, Metro says.
Red Line: From 10 p.m. Friday through the midnight closing Sunday, trains will share tracks between Van Ness and Friendship Heights and between New York Avenue and Rhode Island Avenue. In the latter area, the District Department of Transportation will be working on the New York Avenue bridge over the tracks.
Trains will leave the ends of the line at Shady Grove and Glenmont every 15 minutes throughout the weekend. But between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, additional trains will operate between Van Ness and New York Avenue every 15 minutes. So in the line’s core, trains should arrive at platforms about every seven to eight minutes, the transit authority says.
Riders going through the work zones should add 10 to 15 minutes to their normal travel times, Metro says.
Green Line: Trains will share tracks between Naylor Road and Branch Avenue and between L’Enfant Plaza and Mount Vernon Square. The trains will operate about every 18 minutes between the ends of the line at Greenbelt and Branch Avenue. Most trains will be eight-cars long to accommodate the extra passengers who gather on the platforms during the gaps in service.
Yellow Line: On Friday night after 10, trains will operate every 26 minutes between Fort Totten and Huntington. Riders should expect the trip to be 15 to 20 minutes longer than usual.
On Saturday and Sunday, the route of the Yellow Line will change temporarily to accommodate the work — an upgrade to the cell phone system — in the tunnel between L’Enfant Plaza and Mount Vernon Square. The Yellow Line trains will operate via the Blue Line between Huntington and Stadium-Armory. Allow about 15 minutes for extra travel time between L’Enfant Plaza and Pentagon stations. At L’Enfant Plaza, all Yellow Line trains will operate on the lower level.
At off-peak periods and on weekends, the Yellow Line normally would arrive at L’Enfant Plaza from Virginia via the Yellow Line bridge over the Potomac and continue north to Fort Totten. This Saturday and Sunday, riders who want to continue the trip north should switch to the Green Line.