Thursday, February 19, 2009

Let Me Count the Ways

Dr. Gridlock has a good piece in the Post about the potential measures WMATA is considering to save money. For Metro, this could mean:

  • There could be fewer trains in service between 6 and 7 a.m.
  • In the evening, the gap between trains could be widened from 12 to 15 minutes between 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. and from 15 to 20 minutes between 9:30 p.m. and midnight.
  • The gap between trains could be widened on all lines from 9:30 3 p.m., using eight-car trains.
  • On Saturdays, the gap between trains could be widened from 12 to 15 minutes between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.
These certainly sound far more reasonable than some of the original ideas Metro recklessly bandied in recent days such as no trains after 10 p.m. on weeknights and decreased service on weekend nights. There are some other good ideas in the comments. Check them out.

What we'd really like to see--yeah, we must be smoking something--is Metro keep to a published schedule of its trains. If they're going to only run every 20 minutes, wouldn't it be nice to time your arrival at the station when a train is about to get there? Sadly, we have no faith the service can do something so utterly basic. None. Zilch.

Photo: John Morris


Unsuck DC Metro said...

From "Michael"
It's irresponsible for you to continue to insist that WMATA proposed
cutting off rail service after 10pm. I already commented to you that
the proposal was by local jurisdiction staff and was not an official
WMATA proposal. See my comment for "Metro is NOT looking at service

If you're going to report about WMATA issues, you should probably learn
a bit about how the organizations work, how WMATA is funded, how the
budgeting process works, and how WMATA is connected to its member
jurisdictions. It's a lot more complicated but will prevent things like
misunderstanding who it is that is proposing service cuts.

Unsuck DC Metro said...

Technically, you're right. Metro never officially proposed the kind of cutbacks mentioned. However, there is no doubt the source of those rumors is Metro. Did all the major news outlets here in DC just make it up? Floating "worst case" scenarios through leaks is what is irresponsible. If WMATA wants to go that route, we want to remind them of the consequences.

Michael said...

The source of the rumors was DOT and Transportation department employees from Metro's member jurisdictions, i.e., Arlington, Alexandria, Virginia Counties, DDOT, Maryland, etc., not WMATA employees. When Mr. Catoe got word of the rumors, he immediately repudiated them and stated explicitly the same day that Metro was not considering cutting off service after 10pm on rail.

Metro's board asked an advisory group to think about service cuts, those cuts were developed without WMATA or Metro input, and when Metro heard of them, they were officially denied immediately.

I don't think Metro had anything to do with those particular cuts.

Unsuck DC Metro said...

I guess we'll never know the entire story, but to me it sounds like scare tactics on Metro's part. It's a pretty typical ploy. I guess we'll find out soon enough what they really plan to do to bridge the budget gap. As mentioned in the Dr. Gridlock piece, some of the proposals today don't quite make ends meet.

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