Some of Metro’s sidelined railcars might finally go back in service this summer, along with cheaper rail fares for late-night riders, under a new budget.
Starting in July, late night Metrorail fares — for trips trip after 9:30 p.m. — will be $2 and unlimited monthly passes will get cheaper too, under a $4.5 billion budget passed by the Metro Board of Directors.
Earlier changes will be made permanent, including free rail-bus transfers and $2 flat-rate, one-way rail fares on weekends.
The new budget would also lock-in rail service improvements — once troubled 7000-series railcars return.
“The service and fare changes in this budget will be helpful for our system,” said Metro board member Matt Letourneau.
He said the changes would help make the system “more equitable (and) better equipped to serve our riders’ needs and their travel patterns.”
Some increased bus service will be made permanent as well.
This fiscal year 2023 budget relies on federal money “to maintain service as we emerge from the pandemic,” Letourneau said, “and we’re really grateful for that support.”
But he warned of a “significant fiscal issue” coming in fiscal year 2024. “That’s something the board will have to grapple with.”
Read the budget highlights.