Update on the July 2021 RAC meeting: this month's meeting will take place this Wednesday, July 14th, to accommodate holiday travel last week. Stay tuned for more information.
The Riders Advisory Council is a group of volunteers from the WMATA rider community who represent riders and advise the WMATA Board of Directors on issues affecting Metrobus, Metrorail, and MetroAccess service.
Update on the July 2021 RAC meeting: this month's meeting will take place this Wednesday, July 14th, to accommodate holiday travel last week. Stay tuned for more information.
Big Thank you to the Board for supporting the Riders' Advisory Council!!!
Metro Board Chairman Jack Evans pulled a vote to end the Riders’ Advisory Council from the board’s agenda at the start of its meeting, but changes will be made to the council.
The List Grows Longer to Keep the Riders' Advisory Council
The letter urges the board to reconsider, saying eliminating the RAC would "undermine the strides Metro has made" and decrease transparency.
The Metro board will vote next Thursday whether to eliminate the RAC in favor of an online survey platform.
SAVE THE WMATA RIDERS' ADVISORY COUNCIL!
October 25 the WMATA board plans to vote to dissolve the Rider's Advisory Council, but the current members of the RAC are pushing back. At a time when public distrust of WMATA is high and WMATA is struggling to win back riders, the Board of Directors has decided to dissolve WMATA’s Riders’ Advisory Council (RAC). The RAC, created in 2005, consists of Board-appointed volunteers from all jurisdictions who represent WMATA riders and provide feedback to WMATA Board members and staff. In WMATA’s own words, the RAC exists to “actively seek input from a broad range of riders and organizations” on ways to improve Metrorail, Metrobus, and MetroAccess services so that WMATA can “effectively address the diverse needs of the riding public.” We are a group of passionate riders who have volunteered to meet regularly to discuss, consider, and recommend ideas to improve WMATA.
For the last nine months, the RAC’s ability to improve WMATA rider experiences has been stalled. We were asked to limit our committee work while the WMATA Board undertook a review of the RAC’s goals and mission to make the group a more effective voice for riders and resource for WMATA. In response to the Board, RAC made suggestions for improvement and we assumed negotiations were taking place in good faith. Nonetheless, we learned this month that the Board had changed its position and that the RAC would be dissolved at WMATA’s October Board meeting. No definitive reason has been provided directly to the RAC.
We are disappointed in this decision. Not only because the RAC itself has been left out of substantive conversations about how we can improve, but also because the sudden decision is a disservice to the riders. We had been told by WMATA Board chair Jack Evans and others, in public and in private, and in no uncertain terms, that there were absolutely no plans to disband the group.
Perhaps the RAC has not been as effective as it could have been but we have spent the last nine months developing a concrete plan to be more efficient and effective. And yet, if the Board does believe that the RAC is inefficient or ineffective, why dissolve it instead of fixing it?
As RAC members, we have often felt that we were shouting into a void. Questions and requests to the Board and WMATA staff went unanswered, recommendations were ignored. As an example, Metro police staff spoke to us at our September meeting about fare evasion and criminal behavior system-wide. We asked for more information on a few topics and were promised it, but more than a month later, we have not received any of it.
WMATA is undoubtedly doing better, operationally speaking, than it has in previous years. Fewer fires and offloadings and better trains - all of that is positive. But WMATA still has a serious credibility gap with the riding public, and has not yet begun to change the impression of a secretive agency opposed to transparency. At a time when ridership is down dramatically, eliminating the only direct rider connection, instead of trying to fix that connection, is short-sighted and only reinforces the public perception that WMATA is not to be trusted. Relying exclusively on an online feedback system, WMATA’s rumored substitute for RAC,will not help the region feel that they have a voice or any insight into the agency’s decisions.
As taxpayers and the riding public, we all want the best WMATA system possible. WMATA needs rider input, RAC members are willing to do the work of improving the WMATA system for all riders. Let’s do this—the region deserves a strong and effective WMATA, and only riders can help it get there.
Metro reminds customers that Red Line capital improvement project will close two stations for 45 days starting Saturday
Metro is encouraging Red Line customers to prepare for a major capital improvement project that will result in Brookland and Rhode Island Ave stations being closed from Saturday, July 21, 2018, through Labor Day, Monday, September 3. On the weekend of July 28-29 the work zone will be extended to Silver Spring Station, closing Takoma Station and the Red Line platform at Fort Totten.
Most Red Line customers can avoid the work zone by using the Green Line between Fort Totten and Gallery Place stations. In addition, Metro will run some Yellow Line trains to/from Greenbelt during rush hours to provide additional capacity.
During the 45-day project, free shuttle buses will replace Red Line train service between NoMa-Gallaudet U and Fort Totten stations, with additional shuttle buses serving Takoma and Silver Spring on the weekend of July 28-29. Free express shuttle buses will also operate between Brookland and Rhode Island Ave and the areas of Metro Center, Gallery Place and Union Station.
Customers should allow additional travel time or consider alternate travel options if traveling to or from the affected stations.
In order to provide faster, more efficient bus service to and from Downtown DC, Metro and the District Department of Transportation have worked together to establish a dedicated bus lane along parts of Rhode Island Ave NE for Metrobus service and shuttle buses traveling through the shutdown zone. Additional G9 MetroExtra service will operate during all hours the rail system is open, seven days a week using the dedicated bus lanes.
More information, including travel alternatives can be found on the upcoming track work page or for assistance customers may call Metro Customer Service at 202-637-7000.
Metro to permit water through Wednesday, July 4
In light of the excessive heat forecast for today and tomorrow, Metro will allow riders to carry and drink water on the system through the end of the service day on Wednesday, July 4.
The exception to Metro's "no eating or drinking" policy applies to water only - in stations and aboard trains, buses and MetroAccess vehicles.
Passengers are encouraged to use reusable containers or bottles that can be tightly secured and to use trash receptacles to dispose of any waste.
Heat safety tips
Monitor for heat exhaustion and heat stroke. If you're not feeling well, don't get on the train. An on-board medical emergency can delay an entire rail line. Instead, wait on the platform and ask a Metro employee to call for medical assistance.
+ Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
+ Stay out of direct sunlight.
+ Wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothing.
"Metrobus launches cash-free pilot, opens Rosslyn Bus Tunnel as part of service changes June 24
Effective Sunday, June 24, 2018, Metrobus will begin a cash-free pilot on Route 79 MetroExtra in the District of Columbia to make trips faster; new connections are being added in Arundel Mills and Forestville in Maryland; and new, improved service will be provided along Columbia Pike and a new bus tunnel in Rosslyn will allow better access for buses to improve on-time performance in Virginia.
As part of the June 24 changes, Route 79 MetroExtra will go cash-free to speed up your trip. Customers boarding the bus will need to pay with a SmarTrip card. Cash and coins will not be accepted and you won't be able to add money to your SmarTrip card on the bus. The pilot program will test whether going cash-free on Route 79 MetroExtra will make boarding quicker and improve travel times.
Customers will still be able to pay with cash on other routes, including Route 70 which serves many of the same stops as Route 79 MetroExtra.
Metro will also open the new Rosslyn Bus Tunnel on June 24. The bus-only tunnel between North Moore and North Lynn streets will eliminate the long-term construction detour and improve on-time performance.
View news release:
Metro invites rider comment on proposed changes on Metrobus routes 42, 43, L1 and L2 at open houses tonight, June 20 and tomorrow, June 21. http://ora.cl/g68sw for details. #wmata
BEHOLD!!! Metro unveils first-ever commemorative Capitals SmarTrip card in honor of historic Stanley Cup Win | Details: https://t.co/CtpH0kLzLF
#ALLCAPS #ALLOURS #StanleyCup #NHL #WEGOTTHECUP #WMATA
Metro to run additional service Tuesday for Capitals victory parade
Metrorail will operate rush-hour service levels throughout the day Tuesday to accommodate thousands of fans expected for the Capitals' victory parade in Downtown DC.
On Tuesday, the rail system will open at 5 a.m. with regular morning rush hour service. However, instead of scaling back during the midday hours, Metro will continue operating trains at those same rush-hour frequencies throughout the day and into the evening commute. Trains will depart end-of-line stations every 8 minutes, with service as frequent as every 2 to 4 minutes at downtown stations served by multiple lines.
Hundreds of additional Metro employees will be on hand to support the operation-including additional police, station managers, train operators, supervisors, and support staff to assist fans at downtown stations.
The busiest stations are expected to be Archives, Arlington Cemetery, Foggy Bottom, Federal Triangle, Metro Center, Federal Center SW, L'Enfant Plaza, Smithsonian, Union Station and Gallery Place. Metro recommends selecting a station near the parade route on the same line as where you start your trip.
Metro is advising attendees to ensure that your SmarTrip card is loaded with enough fare value to cover your entire roundtrip. You can check your balance or load additional value online at smartrip.wmata.com. (Expect lines at fare vending machines at stations closest to the parade.) As a reminder, each person traveling on Metro needs his or her own SmarTrip card.
As with any large-scale event, Metro Transit Police may make temporary changes to ensure your safety, including designating selected station entrances as "entry only" or "exit only," or turning off escalators where crowding conditions warrant. If an individual station becomes overcrowded, trains may temporarily bypass it. In addition, crowding conditions on platforms may also cause Metro to slow train speeds as they enter selected stations, which may result in brief delays.
Regular weekday fare policies will be in effect: peak fares are charged before 9:30 a.m. and between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., with off-peak fares at all other times.
Metro parking lots and garages may reach capacity early in the day, and customers should have alternate parking locations in mind if needed. Parking fees are charged as vehicles exit Metro facilities.
Metro service information is available by signing up for MetroAlerts email and text messages at wmata.com/metroalerts or by following Metro on Twitter.
WMATA RAC IS #ALLCAPS!!!
Metro and Monumental Sports and Entertainment today announced special late-night rail service to accommodate fans attending the official Caps Game 5 watch party at the Capital One Arena and surrounding streets around Gallery Place. Trains will run a full hour beyond Metro’s regular weeknight closing time thanks to the Monumental partnership, which covers the $100,000 in additional expenses associated with keeping the 234-mile, 91-station transit system open.
The agreement is the first time the Metrorail system has ever extended hours for an away game as the Capitals stand one win away from their first-ever Stanley Cup win.
Metro-Xfinity extended late-night service tonight will include Farragut West and Farragut North to accommodate Golden Triangle watch party
Fans attending the Caps Game 4 outdoor watch party at Farragut Square tonight will be able to enter the Metrorail system at Farragut West and Farragut North stations during the extra hour of service, Metro announced today. The event is being hosted by the Golden Triangle Business Improvement District (BID) and the National Park Service, in collaboration with the Washington Capitals, Monumental Sports and Entertainment, and the National Hockey League (NHL).
Trains will run an additional hour beyond Metro's regular closing time tonight for fans attending Game 4 of the Capitals v. Knights Stanley Cup Finals at Capital One Arena tonight thanks to Xfinity, who is funding the extra hour of service.
After 11:30 p.m., fans attending the game at Capital One Arena can enter the Metrorail system at Gallery Place, Metro Center (11th & G street entrance only), or Judiciary Square (F Street entrance only).
Fans attending the Golden Triangle watch party can enter the system at Farragut West or Farragut North stations.
For additional information, including last train times, please see the news release.
View news release:
Metro seeks volunteers to serve on Accessibility Advisory Committee
Metro's Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC) is looking for new members to advise Metro's Board of Directors on transportation issues affecting senior citizens and people with disabilities. Applications are now being accepted for the 20-member committee. The ACC advises Metro through monthly committee and subcommittee meetings on Metrobus, Metrorail and MetroAccess.
Metro is seeking one member from Montgomery County; one member from Alexandria; and one at-large member from Virginia (Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax City/County, or Falls Church) to serve on the AAC. The committee consists of six members each from Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia; and two at-large members.
To qualify, individuals must be riders of Metrobus, Metrorail and/or MetroAccess; reside in the District of Columbia, Prince George's County, Montgomery County, Arlington County, Fairfax County, Fairfax City, City of Falls Church, or the City of Alexandria. Metro employees, contractors or elected officials are not eligible. Candidates will be chosen to represent a cross-section of customers who are disabled and/or are seniors, and to represent different locations in the Metro service area. Committee members serve voluntarily and are appointed by the Board to serve a two-year term.
The deadline to apply is 5:00 p.m., Monday, June 4, 2018:
+ Submit an application online (www.wmata.com/about/accessibility-advisory-committee/application/edapply.cfm)
+ Call 202-962-1100 to request an application form or assistance with completion; or
+ Mail completed applications to WMATA Accessibility Advisory Committee at 600 Fifth Street, NW, Room 7A-01, Washington, DC 20001 or fax to 202-962-1274.
Not all applicants will be selected. All applications will be retained for two years from the date submitted for future consideration.
Metro seeks public input on future joint development at Deanwood Metro Station
Metro is inviting the public to provide feedback on the proposed closure of the surface parking lot at Deanwood Metrorail Station to make way for a future mixed-use joint development project.
The Deanwood Station lot is currently underutilized, and Metro's goal is to maximize the utility of the station through increased ridership and revenue generated from the proposed joint development.
Under the proposal, the station's bus loop and Kiss & Ride area would remain available. Any displaced parking customers would be able to find available spaces at nearby station, including Cheverly, Minnesota Avenue and Addison Road.
Metro welcomes customers to provide input on the proposed lot closure. Customer feedback may be provided through 9 a.m., Monday, July 2, 2018:
+ Take a survey online (deanwoodcommentform.questionpro.com)
+ Attend an open house at 7:00 p.m., followed by a public hearing at 7:15 p.m. on Wednesday, June 20, 2018 at the following location:
Deanwood Recreation Center
1350 49th St. NE
Washington, DC 20019
*Speaker registration is on-site only
Comments will be provided to the Metro Board of Directors for final review and approval in September 2018. If removal of the Park & Ride surface lot is approved, along with any other associated transit improvements, Metro would seek proposals from developers to redevelop the Park & Ride lot.
The closure of the Park & Ride lot would not occur until after a development agreement is reached and the joint development approved by Metro's Board of Directors. The selected developer would be responsible for planning and creating a development plan and working with the District of Columbia and the community for approval of the project.
HOW TO SUBMIT TESTIMONY NOT AT THE PUBLIC HEARING
Testimony may be submitted by a comment form on the proposed changes, found at wmata.com/plansandprojects through Monday, July 2, 2018 at 9 a.m. Respondents may submit freeform comments and provide attachments. This option is in addition to your ability to speak at the public hearing. For those without access to computers or internet, testimony may also be mailed to the Office of the Secretary, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, 600 Fifth Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001. All comments must be received by the Office of the Secretary by 9 a.m. on Monday, July 2, 2018, to be included in the public record.
The docket and supporting documents can be found online at wmata.com/plansandprojects. In addition, the docket is available for inspection at the following locations:
Deanwood Neighborhood Library
1350 49th Street NE
Washington, DC 200019
600 Fifth Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
(During normal business hours, please call in advance to coordinate)
For those without access to computers or internet, note that copies of the docket in its entirety can be requested from Metro's Office of the Secretary by calling 202-962-2511.
Public participation is solicited without regard to race, color, national origin, age, gender, religion, disability or family status. Persons who require special accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act or persons who require translation services (free of charge) should contact the project team at 202-962-2511 or TTY: 202-962-2033 at least 48 hours prior to the public hearing date.
Comments, along with mailed written statements and public hearing comments, will be presented to the Board and will be part of the official public hearing record. Please note that all statements are releasable to the public upon request, and may be posted on WMATA's website, without change, including any personal information provided.
600 5th Street, NW
Washington D.C., DC
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