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Rail News: Passenger Rail

WMATA adds wireless service in Red Line tunnel

Trains pass through the Farragut West Station on the Orange and Blue Lines
Photo – WMATA


The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) yesterday announced the availability of wireless voice and data service in a tunnel segment on the Red Line.

The service will be available on trains moving between the Glenmont and Silver Spring stations in Montgomery County, Md.

The Red Line tunnel is the second portion of the rail system to have wireless service, following a segment between the Potomac Avenue and Stadium Armory stations on the Blue, Orange and Silver lines.

Service on that segment was activated in December 2016.

AT&T, Spring, T-Mobile and Verizon previously installed wireless service in all of WMATA's underground stations. Free Wi-Fi will be available in 30 of those stations by year's end.

Wi-Fi service currently is available at six stations.

WMATA also is installing special cable along 100 miles of tunnel walls to support wireless while it adds the infrastructure needed for a new radio system for trains and emergency responders.

"Customers have told us that they want the ability to stay connected while on Metro, and we are pleased to have worked with the wireless carriers to deliver this service," said WMATA General Manager and Chief Executive Officer Paul Wiedefeld.