Metro could announce Silver Line start date next week

WASHINGTON — Metro’s Silver Line project is in “the final stretch,” and General Manager Richard Sarles could announce a firm start date for service at a briefing next Monday.

During a weekly conference call with reporters, Sarles identified seven or eight items that are scheduled to be completed this week. A lot of the work involves submission of documentation from the construction contractor.

Their completion will determine if Sarles can announce a start date for service, which could be sometime in July.

Just last week, the briefing was far less optimistic.

Rob Troup, the deputy general manager, had expressed concerns that punch list items were not further along.

“Obviously, hitting a roadblock in any of these areas might delay any opening that we have planned,” he said at the time. “We do have a concern that the airports authority and the contractor are behind schedule on approximately half the items we have listed.”

Speaking a week later, Sarles noted an improving timeline.

“Things that were of concern last week had to do with progress,” he said. “We were given some revised completion dates, some of which are this week.”

Phase I of the Silver Line will extend Metro service to Reston and includes stops in Tysons Corner. The $2.9 billion project has been delayed repeatedly and was initially slated to open in 2013.

The second phase will eventually bring Metro service to Dulles International Airport.

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