Transit fare hikes, schedule changes to start across region

WASHINGTON — New bus-only lanes and major changes to bus routes throughout the Baltimore area launched early Sunday morning, with the opening draw of two weeks of free rides. The shift came as other transit systems across the region changed schedules or raised fares.

In Baltimore, the Maryland Transit Administration is offering free rides through June 30 to mark the opening of the new BaltimoreLink bus system with 12 color-coded routes expected to run every 15 minutes at rush hour. That is less frequent than the most-used Metrobus lines in D.C.

When fares return June 25, they will be higher than before.

MTA Maryland local bus, light rail and Baltimore Metro Subway fares rise 10 cents on June 25 from $1.70 to $1.80.

Maryland is also rebranding other transportation options in Baltimore to include “Link” in their names, such as BicycleLink, LocalLink (local bus) and Light RailLink, among others.

Other adjustments are coming to various transit systems around the region that include schedule or fare changes over the next few weeks.

MARC Penn Line

A temporary schedule change for the MARC Penn Line begins June 26. The changes, due to track work between West Baltimore and Odenton, add a few minutes to most weekday trips. Morning southbound trains will board on what is usually the northbound track at West Baltimore, Halethorpe and BWI Marshall Airport.

No changes are planned for the weekend schedule.

Metro

D.C.’s Metro system cuts service hours, reduces scheduled rush hour service and raises fares beginning June 25.

On the rail system, rush-hour riders will pay 10 cents more per trip while riders at other times will pay a quarter more than they do today. It is the first Metro fare increase in three years.

Bus fares also rise a quarter to $2 for regular bus routes. Regular riders can save by buying a weekly bus pass that will remain at $17.50, the cost of 10 one-way trips before the fare increase.

Service cuts include trains only scheduled every eight minutes at the end of each line during rush hour, the end of Yellow Line Rush Plus service, and cuts or reductions for a number of bus routes. The B30 bus between Greenbelt and BWI Marshall Airport, for example, will no longer run on weekends. Airport bus fares rise June 25 from $7 to $7.50.

The rail system also cuts back hours June 25 with trains running between 8 a.m. and 11 p.m. on Sundays, 5 a.m. and 11:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. Friday and 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday.

See a full list of major Metrobus changes further below.

Other local bus systems

Most other local bus systems, including Montgomery County’s Ride On and Fairfax County’s Fairfax Connector, are implementing Metro’s fare increases to $2 for regular routes and $4.25 for express buses. Ride On’s monthly pass remains unchanged at $45.

Alexandria’s DASH bus system is keeping fares at $1.60, the DASH rate since July 2013.

VRE

Virginia Railway Express increases fares starting July 1 by roughly 3 percent.

The cost of Amtrak Step-Up tickets will rise from $5 to $7.

VRE schedules are not changing, but the agency finally retired its last legacy rail car on June 16 after receiving new cars to serve the Fredericksburg Line.

Riders who get increase SmartBenefits starting July 1 must allocate the updated payment information by June 21.

Loudoun County Transit

Loudoun County’s bus system has a number of changes starting in July.

Route 85 (Dulles South Express), Route 86 (Ashburn Link Shuttle), Route 89X (Telos-Wiehle Reston East) and the midday weekday shuttle from the Dulles North Transit Center to several park and rides all end after their runs on June 30.

Paratransit riders near Route 85 will use Virginia Regional Transit (877-777-2708) rather than Loudoun County’s service.

Loudoun County Commuter Bus changes begin July 10.

Route 102E (Telos/Ashburn North/Christian Fellowship to Pentagon/Crystal City) and Route 800D Shadow (Friday midday overflow route from D.C.) will end after their runs on July 7.

All Loudoun commuter bus riders in Crystal City will use a new stop starting July 10 on 18th Street below Route 1.

Also starting July 10, in the Dulles South area, all morning buses, except routes 208 and 209W, will depart from a new park and ride lot at 24281 Millstream Drive.

PRTC

Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission riders in Prince William County and the Manassas area will see fare increases starting June 26 and service changes starting July 3.

OmniRide commuter bus fares will be $6.90 with a SmarTrip card or $9.20 with cash. Metro Direct routes will charge the new Metro express bus fare of $4.25.

OmniLink and Cross County Connector local bus fares will be $1.55, and PRTC’s weekly local bus pass will be $14.35.

The service changes that start July 3 are:

OmniRide

  • Dale City-Washington: Re-timed AM and PM trips; last six AM trips serve Telegraph Road Commuter Lot. MX-1 trip eliminated. Friday trips adjusted.
  • Dale City-Pentagon-Rosslyn/Ballston: Service between Lindendale Commuter Lot and Dale City Commuter Lot discontinued — route will start at the Dale City Commuter Lot. Dale City-Pentagon-Navy Yard buses will continue to serve Lindendale Commuter Lot.
  • Dale City-Pentagon-Navy Yard: Friday trips retimed.
  • Lake Ridge-Washington: AM and PM trips retimed.
  • Lake Ridge-Pentagon-Crystal City: AM and PM trips retimed.
  • Lake Ridge-Mark Center: AM start times at Tacketts Mill adjusted.
  • South Route 1: Service along 4th Street between Pennsylvania and Independence avenues discontinued; buses will stay on 7th Street. Montclair-Washington buses will continue to serve 4th Street.
  • Montclair-Washington: PM start times adjusted.
  • Tysons: AM and PM start times adjusted to meet VRE trains.
  • Commuter Lot Shuttle (CLX): CLX-2 trip eliminated. CLX will now serve Telegraph Road Commuter Lot.
  • Manassas-Washington: AM and PM trips retimed.
  • Manassas-Pentagon: Some trips will use I-495 Express Lanes to I-395 HOV lanes instead of I-66. Two midday trips will serve the Cushing Road and Limestone commuter lots. Better transfer options between Rosslyn and the Pentagon.
  • Gainesville-Washington: AM and PM trips retimed. Two midday M-200 trips will now serve the Cushing Road and Limestone commuter lots.
  • Gainesville-Pentagon: Some trips will use I-495 Express Lanes to I-395 HOV lanes instead of I-66. G-204 PM trip will depart Pentagon at 5:18 p.m. Two midday M-200 trips will now serve the Cushing Road and Limestone commuter lots.

Metro Direct

  • Prince William Metro Direct: Trip that currently goes out of service at Franconia-Springfield at 9 a.m. will stay in service to PRTC Transit Center. Two new express trips added (these trips will use Saturday routing). PM trips adjusted.
  • Manassas Metro Direct: Most trips will no longer operate between Manassas Mall and Manassas Junction. Alternatives include Cross County Connector, Manassas OmniLink-South and Manassas Park OmniLink.
  • Linton Hall Metro Direct: AM and PM trips retimed.

OmniLink

  • Dale City OmniLink: PM trips adjusted to account for traffic conditions. New 5:10 p.m. trip added.
  • Woodbridge OmniLink Loop A: All trips will serve Woodbridge VRE (now a time point instead of Dawsons Beach). PM trips adjusted to account for traffic conditions. New 5:10 p.m. trip added.
  • Woodbridge OmniLink Loop B: Chinn Center becomes an on-demand stop. New stops added near the Chinn Center. PM trips adjusted to account for traffic conditions. New 5:10 p.m. trip added.
  • Dumfries OmniLink: PM trips adjusted to account for traffic conditions. New 5:10 p.m. trip added.
  • Manassas OmniLink-South: Route will now service residential/retail areas near Oaks of Wellington.
  • Manassas Park OmniLink: Manassas Park Community Center becomes an on-demand stop.

FREDericksburg Regional Transit

On Jun. 13, the Fredericksburg City Council approved fare increases for FREDericksburg Regional Transit beginning July 1. Regular service single fares rise from $1 to $1.25 and VRE feeder service single fares rise from $1.50 to $1.75.

A monthly pass for basic FRED service rises from $40 to $50, while a monthly pass for VRE feeder service rises from $50 to $60. The yearly pass for basic FRED service increases from $225 to $250.

Details of Metrobus changes from Metro

The following routes will have new timetables that reflect schedule changes, added or discontinued trips, or trip time adjustments.

District of Columbia: 30N, 30S, 42, 43*, 52, 54, 64, 70, 80, 90, 92, 96, A2, A6, A8, D8, E4, E6*, G2*, G8, H4, H8, L2, N2*, N4*, N6*, S1*, S2*, S4*, S9*, W4, X2

Maryland: 89, B30*, C4, C11, C13, C21, C22, C26, F4, F13*, H11, H12, H13, J2, J5*, K6, P12, P17*, P18*, P19*, Q1, Q4, T2, W13*, W14*, W19*, Y2, Y7, Y8, Z7

Virginia: 1A, 1C, 2A, 2B, 2T*, 5A, 7W, 7X*, 10A, 10N*, 13Y*, 15K*, 15L*, 16B, 16E, 16J, 16P, 16Y, 17A*, 17B*, 17F*, 17M*, 18P*, 18R*, 18S*, 23B, 28A*, 28X*, 38B, REX*

* See additional service change information about these routes below.

D.C.

  • 43 Mount Pleasant
    Afternoon buses will begin service at a new stop along westbound I (Eye) Street, west of 14th Street NW. Buses will no longer serve Franklin Square.
  • E6 Chevy Chase
    Buses will operate a long-term detour due to the closure of Oregon Avenue NW to accommodate utility work. The new schedule reflects adjusted trip times.
  • G2 P Street-LeDroit Park
    N2, N4, N6 Massachusetts Avenue
    Buses will resume service along P Street between 18th Street and Dupont Circle NW due to the completion of long-term construction.
  • S1 16th Street-Potomac Park
    All morning trips will serve stops along northbound 14th Street between Buchanan Street and Missouri Avenue NW.
  • S2, S4 16th Street
    S9 16th Street Limited
    Route S2 and S4 service will be simplified, with most trips operating between Federal Triangle and Silver Spring. Service at stops along 14th Street NW will be discontinued, with alternate service available on Route S1. Additional Route S9 limited-stop trips will be added to the schedule, including trips between 16th Street and Missouri Avenue NW, and Franklin Square during morning rush hour; and between Franklin Square and 16th Street and Colorado Avenue NW during afternoon rush hour.

Maryland

  • B30 Greenbelt-BWI Marshall Airport
    On weekdays, the time between buses will change from every 40 minutes to every 60 minutes. Saturday and Sunday service will be eliminated.
  • F13 Cheverly-Washington Business Park
    Buses will be rerouted near Washington Business Park. From northbound Martin Luther King Jr. Highway, buses will operate to Lottsford-Vista Road, Forbes Boulevard and Philadelphia Way before returning to southbound Martin Luther King Jr. Highway. Service along Boston Way will be discontinued. Nearby stops will be served along Forbes Boulevard at Boston Way.
  • J5 Twinbrook-Silver Spring
    Route J5 will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: Red Line; Metrobus C4, J1, J2, J3, Q1, Q2, Q4; Ride On 46.
  • *P17, P18, P19 Oxon Hill-Fort Washington
    Route P17 and P19 service to downtown D.C. will be discontinued. Route P17 trips will be replaced by Route P18 trips operating between Southern Avenue Metro station and Fort Washington Park & Ride via Fort Foote and Tantallon. Additional Route P18 trips will be added to the schedule. Route P19 trips will operate between Southern Avenue Metro station and Fort Washington Park & Ride. Regular fare will be charged on all trips.
  • W13, W14 Bock Road
    Route W13 trips will be replaced by Route W14 trips operating between Southern Avenue Metro station, Friendly and Fort Washington Forest. (Some trips will continue to begin and end at Friendly.) Regular fare will be charged on all trips.
  • W19 Indian Head Express
    Route W19 will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: MTA Commuter Bus 640, 650.

Virginia 

  • 2T Tysons Corner-Dunn Loring
    Route 2T will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: Fairfax Connector 461, 462, 463.
  • 7X Lincolnia-Pentagon
    Route 7X will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: Metrobus7W.
  • 10N Reagan National Airport
    New Friday and Saturday late night and Sunday early morning service will operate between Reagan National Airport, Crystal City, Pentagon City and Pentagon in response to the change in Metrorail service hours. Connections to D.C. and other Virginia bus service will be available at the Pentagon.
  • 13Y Arlington-Union Station
    Route 13Y will be eliminated.
  • 15K, 15L Chain Bridge Road
    Most morning and all afternoon service will operate between East Falls Church Metro station and McLean-Langley as Route 15K. The first morning northbound Route 15K trip will depart Rosslyn Metro station to allow for early connections between Metrorail and Langley. Route 15L service will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: Metrobus 15K; Fairfax Connector 721; ART 53, 55.
  • 17A, 17B, 17F, 17M Kings Park
    Route 17B trips will be changed to operate between Burke Centre VRE Park & Ride and Pentagon Metro station. Route 17B service to Kings Park West (Zion Drive, Sideburn Road and Commonwealth Boulevard) will be discontinued. The Kings Park Line will be renamed Kings Park-North Springfield Line. Routes 17A and 17F will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: Metrobus 17B, 17G, 17H, 17K, 17L, 17M; Fairfax Connector 306, 401, 402.
  • 18P, 18R, 18S Burke Centre
    Additional Route 18P morning trips will be added to the schedule. Routes 18R and 18S will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: Metrobus 18H, 18P; Fairfax Connector 305, 310.
  • 28A Leesburg Pike
    Westbound trips to Tysons Corner Metro station will not operate via Tysons Corner Center (Towers Crescent Drive, Tysons One Place and Fashion Boulevard). Eastbound trips to King Street-Old Town Metro station will continue to operate via Tysons Corner Center.
  • 28X Leesburg Pike Limited
    Route 28X will be eliminated. Travel alternatives: Metrobus 26A, 28A.
  • REX Richmond Highway Express
    Weekday service will extend to the Fort Belvoir Post Exchange/Commissary via Gunston Road. Service to Jackson Loop will be discontinued. Nearby stops will be served along Gunston Road at 5th Street.

Copyright © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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