Metro Has Silver Line Opening Day Plans

Commemorative SmarTrip Card/Credit: Metro

Metro officials said on Monday they “remain confident” that all punch list items will be completed before Silver Line service begins on Saturday, July 26.

Lynn Bowersox, Metro assistant general manager for customer service, communications and marketing, says four items were closed out in the last week. However, about 20 punch list items (down from 35) still need to be completed, she said. Many are multistep items, she added.

“We are working closely with the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, the FTA [Federal Transit Administration] and the Tri-State Oversight Committee to complete the punch list items, obtain the certificates of occupancy and finish safety and security reviews. We remain confident the work will be completed.”

After months of delays, Metro last week finally set an opening date for service on the 11-mile, $2.9 billion Phase 1 of the Silver Line, which will run from East Falls Church to Reston’s Wiehle Avenue.

Bowersox said Metro and public safety officials successfully completed their final safety exercise on Sunday. The first responders practiced an emergency drill on the elevated tracks near the Spring Hill Station.

Metro is now looking ahead to the opening day schedule. Here are some things to know:

There will be a grand opening and ribbon cutting with local officials at the Wiehle Reston East Station at 10 a.m.

If you want to be one of the first riders, you are encouraged to board at McLean, Tysons Corner, Greensboro or Spring Hill. Those stations will open at 11:30 a.m. The first train will leave Wiehle-Reston East at noon. It will arrive at Spring Hill at 12:08 p.m., Greensboro at 12:10 p.m., Tysons Corner at 12:12 p.m. and McLean at 12:14 p.m, then continue on to regular stations along the Silver and Orange lines.

On opening day in Reston, Fairfax Connector buses will take people to the Wiehle-Reston East parking garage and to points on both the North and South sides of the station. The 3,300-space garage will open at 9:30 a.m. on July 26. Parking will be free that day as it will be on all weekends.

There will be a ribbon cutting and transit fair at Wiehle-Reston East on Saturday, July 19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visitors can check out the facilities, including the 200-space bike room.

If you want ensure you are one of the first Silver Line riders, subscribe to the Silver Line Bulletin, where you will be entered into a sweepstakes to be among the inaugural riders.

Metro will also be issuing a commemorative SmarTrip. The card will cost $10 and it will be loaded with $8 of fare value, said Bowersox. Cards will be available at all stations and online beginning July 26.

Photo: Silver line Commemorative SmarTrip card/Credit: Metro

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