MARC proposes new Brunswick Line schedule

April 24, 2012

Maryland commuter rail service on MARC’s Brunswick Line would remain at current levels or be expanded at stations in Montgomery County under a newly proposed schedule released Tuesday.

The changes proposed by the Maryland Transit Administration were designed to alleviate concerns that riders voiced in December, after the state proposed reducing service at some smaller Montgomery stations as part of a plan to make trains run more efficiently. The changes include restoring the Gaithersburg stop on Train 881.

Under the latest proposal, Train 877 would no longer operate to West Virginia but would make more stops in Montgomery. Train 877 would be replaced with Train 875 leaving Union Station at 4:15 p.m., in addition to two other afternoon trains leaving Union Station at 5:15 p.m. and 6:15 p.m.

Two dedicated buses also would meet Train 873 and Train 883 in Brunswick to carry passengers to Martinsburg, Harpers Ferry and Duffields. That would increase the afternoon service to West Virginia to five Washington departures, up from the current three, MTA officials said.

Some stops have been removed from the Frederick branch, according to the plan.

MTA officials said they would not publish an effective date for a new schedule until they receive public feedback. Fares would not increase under the plan, MTA said. The West Virginia surcharge would remain in effect.

MARC passengers can give their opinion in an online survey available at tinyurl.com/Bruns-survey or via e-mail at marc@mta.maryland.gov.

Katherine Shaver is a transportation and development reporter. She joined The Washington Post in 1997 and has covered crime, courts, education and local government but most prefers writing about how people get — or don’t get — around the Washington region.
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