Metro lengthens Yellow, Green Line trains after service cuts cause crowding

WASHINGTON — Metro is adding more cars — but not more trains — to the Green and Yellow lines after crowding increased following service cuts last June.

“This week we began our efforts to run more, and whenever possible all, eight-car trains on the Yellow and Green Line. That’s obviously a reflection of the increased usage there and to accommodate our customers,” General Manager Paul Wiedefeld said Thursday.

Last summer, Metro cut back rush-hour service schedules on all lines to every eight minutes and also ended Yellow Line “Rush Plus” service to Greenbelt.

Combined, the cuts most significantly reduced service at Green Line stations through central D.C. like Columbia Heights and U Street and in Prince George’s County around Greenbelt, College Park and Hyattsville.

Yellow Line trains between Pentagon and L’Enfant Plaza, and Green Line trains through Shaw-Howard Univ. are among the most crowded anywhere in the system at rush hour.

“Obviously there’s the demand there, and now we have more capacity with the increase of the fleet of the 7000s gives us more options to do that,” Wiedefeld said.

This month, Metro received its 500th new 7000 Series railcar. Metro only runs those cars as eight-car trains so riders can expect to see more eight-car trains overall across the system now than they did a few years ago, not just along the Green and Yellow Lines.

Metro is still working on improvements to the cars’ technology as well.

Wiedefeld also said Metro has had more railcars available for service than in the past, due to both the new cars and improved maintenance on older ones that remain in the system.

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