After monthslong closure, Metro’s Yellow Line scheduled to reopen next month

Tatiana Kotrikova on the Yellow Line bridge. (WTOP/Scott Gelman)
Inside the Yellow Line tunnel in Southwest D.C. (WTOP/Scott Gelman)
Workers inside the Yellow Line tunnel on April 4, 2023. (WTOP/Scott Gelman)

Metro’s Yellow Line service is scheduled to resume next month following a monthslong project that aimed to make infrastructure and safety upgrades along the Yellow Line tunnel and bridge.

Service will resume on Sunday, May 7, at 7 a.m., the agency said in a news release. Metro anticipates the reopening of the Yellow Line will reduce travel time by as much as 15 minutes for passengers who have had to use the Blue Line during the closure.

Trains are expected to run every eight minutes between the Huntington and Mount Vernon Square stations on weekdays, and every 12 minutes after 9:30 p.m. on weekdays and on weekends.

“Most of the changes that we made, they were safety critical,” said Tatiana Kotrikova, Metro’s senior program manager, who is leading the team working on the Yellow Line tunnel and bridge project. “I would like our customers to know that the infrastructure is safe for them to ride our trains.”

Metro announced the Yellow Line closure in September 2022, and said the work was necessary to “mitigate water intrusion” in the tunnel and replace bridge bearings and expansion joints.

The tunnel and bridge were originally built in the 1970s, Metro spokeswoman Sherri Ly said.

Ly told WTOP in an email the total project cost is $384 million.

Kotrikova described the work as complicated, noting the transit system had to get 75 permits from different D.C.-area jurisdictions.

The bridge bearings, Kotrikova said, can only be replaced during shutdowns. Metro also replaced a pipe, so “in case there is a fire emergency, we should be fast and efficient to fight fire.”

Passengers won’t see or notice the changes along the bridge, she said.

“I wouldn’t say that it was in really bad shape,” Kotrikova said. “It was definitely due for repairs.”

In total, 88 bearings on the bridge were replaced. In the tunnel, crews also replaced over 1,000 steel plates that were held together by over 12,000 bolts.

“I’m also very proud and thankful to the dedicated women and men who worked to deliver this complex project on schedule and on budget,” Metro General Manager Randy Clarke said in a statement.

Scott Gelman

Scott Gelman is a digital editor and writer for WTOP. A South Florida native, Scott graduated from the University of Maryland in 2019. During his time in College Park, he worked for The Diamondback, the school’s student newspaper.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up