Monday, September 22, 2008

Metro Rail... but Not About Rail to Dulles

Rail to Dulles has been the hot topic lately. Will it happen? Will the project get funded? But now comes a story from the Washington Business Journal about more than the Dulles project. A story about the funding needs of the whole Metro system.

According to the article, Metro’s General Manager John Catoe said today that the regional public transit system will need $7 billion for capital spending from 2010-2020 just to maintain current service, as well as $4.2 billion for expanding capacity and improving lighting, signs and parking facilities. The money would be spent repairing tunnels and platforms, fixing escalators, restoring bus garages, replacing one-third of the rail cars, buying buses and vans, making a power upgrade, build pedestrian tunnels between station.

The agency expects rail ridership to grow by 22 percent over the decade, and bus ridership to increase 9 percent. The current capital budget plan ends in 2010.

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