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MWAA: Silver Line Not Ready For Turnover To Metro

by Karen Goff February 24, 2014 at 4:34 pm 2,532 7 Comments

Wiehle Reston East Metro

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority said on Monday that the Silver Line is not ready to turn over to Metro for final testing.

After a two-week review period in which MWAA checked the work of its contractor, Dulles Transit Authority Partners, MWAA said 7 of 12 areas were deemed deficient.

From MWAA:

Examples of problem areas include:

  • Failure to deliver certificates of occupancy for almost 20 wayside buildings, including stations, power substations and the tunnel;
  • Performance issues with the Automatic Train Control System that prevent WMATA from beginning Operational Readiness Testing;
  •  Failure to fully correct defects that impact operations, including track gage problems;
  • Elevator and escalator problems, and water leaks in buildings;
  • Incomplete documentation for testing requirements and safety/security verifications.

This could mean more delays as DTP goes back and makes the corrections. DTP had announced in early February it had reached “substantial” completion of the Silver Line.

An exact opening date for the Metrorail extension was never announced, leaving leeway for problems such as this. It is not known how long it will take DTP to make the corrections.

Phase 1 of the Silver Line, which will run from East Falls Church to Reston’s Wiehle Avenue, was originally estimated for turnover in August for a December 2013 opening. Last spring, that was moved to a November turnover. In January, the project was delayed further while problems with the Automatic Train Control System were addressed.

After the turnover to Metro, the rail line has an additional 90 days to do more testing.

The Airports Authority says it has instructed DTP to provide a plan and date of conclusion for addressing the outstanding items as quickly as possible.

“We will work closely with DTP, WMATA and our other partners to monitor progress and assure that all contractual obligations are satisfied,” a MWAA spokesman said.

During the 90-day period, the Tri-State Oversight Committee and the Federal Transit Administration will conduct reviews, says MWAA.

  • Dev

    “RIP” Silver Line

  • kcowing

    Its not unexpected that such a large construction project would still have lingering issues to fix as it neared completion. What is really scary is that DTP delivered the Phase 1 system to MWAA as being complete when such a wide array of obvious unresolved problems remained – many of them clearly affecting safety. Either DTP knew about these issues and did not care and/or chose not to disclose them – or they did not know about them to begin with. Not sure which is worse. And where was MWAA oversight during all of this?

  • pork

    whatta joke

  • Mike M

    Let’s just call it the silver elephant.
    Thanks to our local politicians past and present (Jerry Connolly, Kathy Hudgins, Kate Hanley, Ken Plum, etc), we have been railroaded into a situation where the decisionmakers are completely unaccountable to the voters. We have taxation without representation. We have government without representation. There is only one solution. Take the plunge and vote non-Democratic. Stop the zombying into the polls and pulling the levers with the D next to them. Next time, throw the bums out! Hold your nose and exercise accountability! You can always toss the GOPer or indy out in two years too. This is the ONLY way to get control of this as yet unfolding mess which threatens to obliterate Reston. Get your democracy on! Let these sociopaths know they will be held accountable.
    (I am not a Republican. But tell me how the recent development decisions have gone in your view. Tell me how it squares with Democratic ideals? Any ideals?)

  • J2201987

    I guess this is why some people refer to the extension as the “Sliver” Line…

  • Patrick Fine

    How long are we going to have to wait to get service and for this asset that we are all paying for to start generating some revenue? Is there any accountability for the delays or can this just drag on forever without even setting a reliable date for starting service?

  • rolland

    Sir: WMATA and the contractors should go to Delhi to find out how they did it. Delhi Metrorail’s 125 mile network was carrying 1.7 millions passengers a day and is adding 40 more miles including 4 miles of tunnels in just 4 years. Part of the extension is already open. While there they could also approach the Indian government for a soft loan to help finance Washington Metrorail extensions.


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