In "Late-Night Metro Usage Hampered by Ad Dearth" [Metro, Jan. 7], I once again read that the success of Metrorail's late-night hours is being judged based solely on money. Metro obviously did not set this program up to succeed -- it allocated a paltry $75,000 for advertising.

I propose that Metro, the D.C. government and other local jurisdictions judge the success of this program with different measures. For instance, has there been or will there be a decrease in the number of people driving under the influence of alcohol? In the number driving while fatigued? In accidents and fatalities?

My friends and I welcomed the extension of Metro's hours not because there was a cost savings in taking public transportation as opposed to driving but because it meant we did not have to monitor our own possible impairment or worry about others on the road suffering from the same.

I understand public resources are limited, but I worry that by focusing solely on the bottom line, we are forgetting that public services do just that -- provide a benefit for the public good far greater than that which can be measured in dollars.

ERIN FULLER

Alexandria