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Next SafeTrack Surge to Affect Rush-Hour Silver Line Trains

by RestonNow.com May 1, 2017 at 1:30 pm 6 Comments

Many were shocked when WMATA announced late Friday that the next phase of SafeTrack work will mean the closing of several stations and shutdown of line segments, rather than the original plan of continuous single-tracking on certain Metro lines.

As WMATA announced on Friday, the final two SafeTrack surges set to begin this month will mostly affect the Orange and Red Lines, but as usual, the work on those lines will cause a ripple affect on other lines as well, including Reston’s Silver Line trains.

Commuters who regularly take the Orange and Red Lines may want to look into alternate modes of transportation, particularly since what was originally planned to be single-tracking of some segments will now be “line-segment shutdowns,” officials said Friday. In addition, several stations will be closed.

“In order to minimize the customer impact elsewhere on the system and to maximize productivity, the surges, which were originally planned as continuous single tracking, will instead be ‘line segment shutdowns,’ where buses will replace trains at selected stations,” officials said on WMATA’s website.

Restonians should be aware that all of this means there will be roughly half as many Silver Line trains operating during peak rush-hour than usual during this next SafeTrack surge, which is scheduled for Tuesday, May 16 to Thursday, June 15.

Here are the details WMATA released on Friday:

  • Buses will replace Orange Line trains between New Carrollton and Stadium-Armory stations.
  • Orange Line trains will operate between Vienna and Largo Town Center every 6-8 minutes during rush hours.
  • Silver Line trains will operate between Wiehle-Reston East and Stadium-Armory every 12 minutes — rather than every 6 minutes, as usual) during rush hours.
  • New Carrollton, Landover, Cheverly, Deanwood and Minnesota Ave stations will be closed. Limited free shuttle bus service will be provided to/from all closed stations.
  • Blue Line trains will operate every 12 minutes, as usual, between Franconia-Springfield and Largo Town Center.

In addition, WMATA officials recommended that commuters who usually park at the New Carrollton or Landover stations may want to park at the Largo or Greenbelt stations instead, since only shuttle buses will be available at New Carrollton and Landover.

For more information, visit WMATA’s website.




  • Willie Reston


  • JoeInReston

    I had a nightmarish experience this Saturday afternoon trying to get to the Nats game. Metro ended the silver line in Ballston. I had to exit the train and wait ten minutes for the next orange line train. The orange line train picked me and stopped at Foggy Bottom. No trains were running between Foggy Bottom and Federal Triangle. Metro would have had me take a bus to Federal Triangle and get back on the train again. That would have been three hops on one line, not counting the hop to the green line to get to the stadium. At that point, I gave up and grabbed a taxi.

    Why couldn’t the Metro have ended the silver line at Foggy Bottom? It would have made things a lot easier for their customers.

    Similar story on the way back. Took the green line from Nats stadium to L’Enfant, and than hopped to the orange/silver/blue line train, this one turned out to be a blue line train. The train arrived, I boarded it, than it just sat on the platform for 10 minutes. There may have been a valid reason given, but given the quality (or lack thereof) of the train’s speakers, I couldn’t make out the message. The train went one station to Federal Triangle, where we told to exist and take a metro bus to Foggy Bottom. I was in a big hurry by that point and elected to take a cab.

    There was a huge political demonstration this weekend. Metro picked a horrible time to going to undergo serious track maintenance. My cab rides were backed up in traffic. I imagine the metro buses encountered a similar fate.

    • Mike M

      It just gets worse and worse. These surges are no antedote the do-nothing, report-falsifying union labor. THAT is Metro’s problem. Until THAT is addressed, Metro will be a national disgrace. Let’s see, . . . whose idea was it to tack the super expensive Silver Line on to the side of an already failing system?

      • cRAzy

        The problem may end with the unions, but it begins with the board. Never have WMATA Board members been interested in anything other than greater personal/constituency control and paying less–either as a constituency or WMATA pax, bus and rail.

        • Mike M

          Are you saying it’s not expensive enough?

      • Jenny Gibbers

        I think the issue also has to do with maintenance; trains and rail systems were refurbished in Spain, Italy and the US. All newer cars are manufactured by Kawasaki in Japan with conflicting technical standards and incompatabilities. These issues are going to take decades to fix, likely its cheaper to replace the whole fleet.

        Someone promoted Maglev but there is no political will to get it done. The leaders are bound by their bread and circus policies.

        It would take a strong leader like Donald Trump to fix this mess.



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