Getting around the Nation’s Capital is easy when you take Metrorail, Washington DC’s sensational subway, the sparkling crown jewel in its public transit system. It seems like everyone takes Metrorail, from commuters and students to government officials and tourists. Why? Because Washington, DC’s Metrorail is a fast and efficient way to beat the traffic and get around town.
Today, Metrorail is a $782.8 million transit system, carrying more than 800,000 passengers to station stops in and around the world capital each and everyday. Sure, Metrorail has its challenges. Ridership continues to break records and demands for new generation subway cars and safety systems are ever-present in the minds of the Nation’s Capital transit leaders. While operational issues plague any subway system, its Metrorail’s humble beginnings and pristine rail cars that continue to inspire and enchant.
What’s more to learn about DC’s Metrorail? Check out these 5 Things You Probably Don’t Know About Washington DC’s Metrorail. Sure to surprise you.
Metrorail Fact 1. Metrorail was pushed at the highest levels of government. In 1965, US President Lyndon Banes Johnson signed the very legislation he sought to authorize a $431 million rapid transit system in the Nation’s Capital. The rest, as they say, is history.
Metrorail Fact 2. Metrorail belongs to the National Capital Region. Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) was established in the mid 1960s for transportation transit planning throughout the Washington, DC metro area, bringing together transit riders and transportation planners from Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia. WMATA continues to plan for additional subway lines and transportation routes in and around the Washington, DC metropolitan area.
Metrorail Fact 3. Washington DC Metrorail and Metrobus services serve a population of 3.5 million people within an area of 1,500 square miles in a tri-state region. Union Station is the busiest station stop for Metrorail, with more than 35,000 riders getting on and off trains each day.
Metrorail Fact 4. Metrorail is a $782.8 million transit system, operating more than 588 escalators, 236 elevators, and 850 railcars during peak service hours each day. Metrorail has its own police force to protect the travelling public, and extended hours for greater convenience than ever before.
Metrorail Fact 5. Metrorail, like other public transit systems, needs your support and tax dollars. In 2009, Metro projected it needed at least $7 billion to keep trains and buses running and in good repair through 2020, according to Reuters. Metrorail, like other public transit systems, maintains subway cars that are 30 years old in some cases.
FACTBOX: Facts about DC Metro subway
Reuters (June 22, 2009)
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority
DC Rails Station Finder
Washington, DC in Urban Rail Net