WASHINGTON – Tolls, naming rights and fare increases are all proposed as a way of feeding new money into local transportation. But in the long run, it may be just pocket change.
Washington Metropolitan Council of Governments Transportation planner Ron Kirby says there has been a lot of progress on fixing problems with the region’s rail system, including Metro and Virginia Railway Express. But he says the Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act that is providing $3 billion in state and federal money runs out in 2020, just a few years after the Metro expansion to Dulles is scheduled for completion.
“We’re counting so much on Metro Rail for travel and for development plans in the region and of course not least of which the extension to Dulles airport.”
Kirby says in the long term, providing the resources to maintain and upgrade the Metro rail system should be a priority.
“There’s no plan at this point to continue that funding,so we need to be looking at that right now”.