WASHINGTON — Crystal City and Reagan National Airport Metro stations are closed through the end of Veterans Day weekend, on Monday, and will reopen Tuesday, Nov. 13.
The work was originally scheduled for the previous weekend, but Metro pushed it back to avoid disrupting as many commutes as possible. Metro is fixing concrete at the airport station and upgrading several switches.
With no trains between Braddock Road and Pentagon City for four days, Metro significantly reduced service on other parts of the Blue and Yellow Lines. On Friday and Monday, trains are scheduled every 12 to 16 minutes on each of the lines.
Over the weekend, other regular single-tracking is scheduled on the Blue, Orange, Silver and Red Lines.
Red Line trains are scheduled to single-track Saturday, Sunday and Monday between Grosvenor-Strathmore and Twinbrook. Trains are scheduled every 18 minutes, with additional trains increasing service to every 9 minutes between Medical Center and Silver Spring between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.
On Saturday and Sunday only, Orange and Silver Line trains are scheduled every 24 minutes each with single-tracking between Eastern Market and Stadium-Armory.
On Monday, Metro runs from 5 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. like a typical weekday, but with reduced Saturday-level service. Parking at Metro lots is free on the Veterans Day holiday and Metro charges off-peak fares. Metrobus runs on a Saturday supplemental schedule on the holiday.
Metro is running free shuttle buses between Braddock Road and Pentagon City for the length of the closure and additional express shuttle buses Monday and Friday only between Franconia-Springfield and Pentagon.
On Friday only, Virginia Railway Express (VRE) stopped at Franconia-Springfield, Alexandria, Crystal City, L’Enfant Plaza and Union Station. VRE will not run on Veterans Day.
On Monday, Nov. 12, the holiday reduces regular bus service for many local and commuter transit agencies, but those bus routes still may be the best bet.
Between Arlington and Alexandria, Metroway connects Pentagon City to Braddock Road. In addition, the 10A Huntington-Braddock Rd.-Old Town-Pentagon, 10B Hunting Point-Braddock Rd-Ballston, 11Y Mt. Vernon-Old Town-Farragut Sq., or 16C Culmore-Pentagon-Federal Triangle could be alternatives.
Fairfax Connector also runs Routes 393, 394 and 395 between Springfield and the Pentagon, Route 494 Lorton-Springfield-Tysons and Route 599 Pentagon-Crystal City Express, and Alexandria’s DASH buses provide alternatives.
Weather permitting, taking advantage of bike trails to get around the closure could also be a good bet.
Airport authorities are expecting the roads near the airport to be more congested than usual this weekend with more travelers driving to the terminals.
“We at the airport recommend that passengers drop off and pick up their friends inside our terminal parking garages. They’re free for up to 60 minutes,” said airport spokesperson Rob Yingling.
During similar Metro closures, long backups have formed at times on the George Washington Parkway and Route 1 in Crystal City.
Yingling urges airport travelers who are arriving late in the evening to consider picking up passengers on the upper level. “If they’re coming in on a flight after 8 p.m. the ticketing level roadway is often pretty quiet at that time,” he said.
Next work zone
The next 24/7 work zone starts the Monday after Thanksgiving, that’s Nov. 26.
There will be no Yellow Line service for two weeks, and reduced Blue Line service at Franconia-Springfield and Van Dorn Street.
Every other Blue Line train is scheduled to go to Huntington instead, so all stations will remain open.