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Metro Rush Hour Changes Begin Monday

By Katie Pyzyk - ARLNow.com

Friday - 6/15/2012, 10:30am  ET

Monday, June 18, is the big day Metro has been waiting for. Its new “Rush+” service will be implemented in an effort to improve rush hour on the Metrorail system.

Rush+ will be in effect Monday through Friday, from 6:30-9:00 a.m. and 3:30-6:00 p.m.

Orange Line customers who use stations west of Rosslyn should notice three more trains per hour in each direction. Metro estimates the change will allow for an 18 percent increase in capacity on the Orange Line, which would benefit more than 46,000 customers.

Blue and Yellow line customers who use the stations from Pentagon through Reagan National Airport will see the same amount of trains. However, during rush hour there will be three more Yellow trains per hour, and three fewer Blue. Metro estimates Blue Line riders in Virginia could have to wait up to six minutes longer for a train. More than 33,000 customers are expected to benefit from that change.

To accommodate for fewer Blue Line trains, the 9E and 10E Metrobus routes will be tweaked. During rush periods, the buses will offer express service between Rosslyn and Crystal City.

Riders will have to pay attention to the listed end point on each train, because the Orange and Yellow lines will now split during rush hour. Some Orange Line trains will now terminate at Largo Town Center instead of New Carrollton, and some Yellow Line trains will terminate at Greenbelt instead of Fort Totten. In the other direction, some Yellow Line trains will now terminate at Franconia-Springfield instead of Huntington. Dashed lines on the map indicate the altered routes that will be in place during rush hours.

The rail changes are also supposed to benefit the Silver Line, once it goes into service. That line is already listed on the new Metro map.

Metro has set up videos and an interactive map on its website to explain Rush+. The map lets customers click on the sections they travel to see how their commutes will be affected.