But where does it leave those Blue Line riders who lost trains? Some who are heading to the center of the District clearly will be better off boarding a Yellow Line train for a shorter trip. For example, someone arriving at Franconia-Springfield during the morning rush on June 18 could board a Blue Line train for a trip of about 40 minutes to L’Enfant Plaza, or take a Rush Plus Yellow Line train for a ride of about 28 minutes.
Rush Plus user’s guide: New Metro service begins June 18
Those who work on the west side of the District, near such stations as Foggy Bottom and Farragut West, could experiment with the Yellow Line trains. The Trip Planner on Metro’s Web site at www.wmata.com will tell you to take the Blue Line, as usual, and that means you don’t have to change trains. But Trip Planner doesn’t account for the possibility that you may arrive at a Virginia station at the start of one of those 12-minute gaps in Blue Line service.
Rather than killing time on the platform, you could board the next Yellow Line train, and transfer to westbound Blue or Orange lines at L’Enfant Plaza. Still, I think your best bet is to time your arrival for the period when two Blue Line trains are six minutes apart, rather than during the 12-minute gap, when you’ll probably see three Yellow Line trains in a row.
The infamous Orange Crush should be less crushy. Rush Plus will add three trains per hour between Vienna and Largo Town Center. The other Orange Line trains will operate along their current route between Vienna and New Carrollton.
That means more service for the very crowded platforms between Vienna and Court House. Even though Metro is removing three Blue Line trains per hour, the additional Orange Line trains mean that riders waiting between Rosslyn and Largo Town Center will have the same number of trains.
Riders traveling east of Stadium-Armory, where the Blue and Orange lines split, will need to pay special attention to the destination signs on the trains if they’re heading for stations between Stadium-Armory and Largo Town Center. They can take a Blue Line train as usual. But an Orange Line train with a “Largo” destination sign also will work for them.
The Rush Plus changes do not affect service on the Green Line, but because more Green Line stations also will see Yellow Line trains, there are some things to keep in mind.
A rider who parks at Greenbelt or one of the other northern stations will have a transfer-free trip to Virginia stations along the Yellow Line’s Rush Plus route, including Reagan National Airport. Riders who wait for inbound Green Line trains at Fort Totten now will have the extra service provided by Rush Plus Yellow Line trains to reach downtown, the Pentagon, National Airport and Alexandria.
In the early evening, some Nationals fans, such as those parking at Greenbelt, may find themselves aboard Yellow Line trains where they used to see only Green Line trains. They’ll have to remember to transfer to the Green Line for Navy Yard station, or they’ll wind up in Virginia.
The Red Line is not directly affected by Rush Plus, but Red Line riders who are transferring to the lines that are affected may need to adjust their travel schedules.
Understanding schedules: Enter your station and start time into the Metro Trip Planner , using a date after June 18. You’ll see the scheduled times for train departures under Rush Plus. Metro’s Next Train listings provide real-time information when you click on a station name on the Web site. The same information is available on a variety of mobile apps, including The Post’s DC Rider.
Hours: Rush Plus won’t operate during the entire peak period. The hours are 6:30 to 9 a.m. and 3:30 to 6 p.m. weekdays. So some rush hour commuters are not going to see the Rush Plus service.
Confusion: Rush Plus creates more potential for boarding the wrong train. Watch train destination signs, and hope they’re correct.