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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

WMATA eyes capacity needs


Based on regional land use forecasts and travel trends, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) officials expect daily ridership to total 1 million passengers by 2030. In order to handle that anticipated increase, officials recently outlined ways to boost capacity.

WMATA must purchase an additional 220 rail cars so the agency can operate all its trains as eight-car units by 2020. Currently, WMATA only has funds to operate half of its trains as eight-car units.

The agency also proposes to: realign the Blue Line to increase capacity at the Rosslyn portal; complete core station improvements, such as additional staircases, escalators, fare gates, ticket vending machines and pedestrian tunnels; expand parking; expand bus service and integrate it with planned streetcar and light-rail lines in major corridors; and add a new Potomac River crossing between Rosslyn and Georgetown with a new downtown rail line.

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More News from 4/21/2008