In the Washington area we have two "world class" airports that are nearly impossible to get to (Dulles and Baltimore-Washington International) and one airport (National) that is so convenient that it's close to being unusable. Recent articles, including "Mass Transit Plan for Dulles Revived" {Metro, June 4} address this problem as though it can be solved by adding some parking lots and connector buses here and there, but the problem really calls for a more comprehensive level of resolution.

If Washington considers itself a world capital and wants to attract air business and air tourism, it will have to provide high-speed, low-cost transportation to both Dulles and BWI -- namely, Metro.

The Orange line should be extended from Vienna to Dulles at one end and from New Carrolton to BWI at the other. That way people could get to and from either airport without having to transfer to buses, wait in additional lines or worry about a system that might not be able to cope with high-volume traffic during peak periods.

Further, if it were as easy to get to Dulles and BWI as it should be, we probably wouldn't need National Airport.

National could be converted for other public uses, such as something of a western annex to the Mall, with room for additions to the Smithsonian, a fairground, a farmers' market, a commercial center (near the Metro stop) and lots of open space for bicycling and sunbathing.

High-speed, direct access is the key to effective airports in this area. We should really be thinking of Metro as the best way to provide the kind of service we need and not divert ourselves with temporary measures that will probably complicate, not improve, matters in the long run.

DAN ADAMS Washington

The June 2 Metro article on the difficulty out-of-towners have with the subway system struck a responsive chord. It is indefensible that in the nation's capital, the Metro board can arrogantly argue against providing more information to visitors on the grounds of "proliferation of signs." Those of us who ride Metro and who are continually approached by confused visitors know that much more must be done.

For example, to address a specific problem mentioned in the article, the chart of fares to various stations should be moved from the kiosk walls to a point near the fare-card machine. No one entering the stations can find it now without being told where it is.

During the past five years, I have from time to time written letters or made phone calls to get a simple sign placed on the wall at the lower-level platform in Rosslyn to make it clear that two lines run on the platform at that point, and to have Metro move the flashing orange/blue "next train destination" sign from the far left tunnel end to the wall facing the platform, because Rosslyn is the point where the lines diverge and time-consuming mistakes are made. Usually the operator announces the name of the train audibly, but not always. My efforts have gotten no results.

Foreign-language signs may be too much to ask: let's get the system labeled better in plain English first.

DONNA SANDIN Reston