The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (Metro) released preliminary data showing that new, higher faregates are reducing fare evasion by more than 70% at the first stations where they have been installed, including Fort Totten, Pentagon City, Bethesda, Vienna, Mt. Vernon Square, and Addison Road.
Metro is now publishing both paid and unpaid ridership data on its online ridership portal to provide transparency on the effectiveness of fare evasion reduction strategies and a more complete picture of total ridership to the public.
"After testing multiple prototypes and getting feedback from customers, the new faregate design is having its intended effect – reducing fare evasion,” said Metro GM/CEO Randy Clarke. “It is critical for Metro to collect as much fare revenue as possible and keep the system safe so we have a transit system worthy of this great region.”
New Metro Faregates Coming Soon
New faregate installation was completed at Congress Heights, and installation at Federal Center SW, Wheaton, and Court House is expected to be completed by early September, followed by the rest of the Metrorail system.
Metro said it will continue to monitor the performance of the new faregates as the rollout is completed.
The new faregate design includes an L-shape door panel that extends over the faregate to minimize gaps between the openings. The increase in barrier height from the original 28 to 48-inch prototype to 55 inches will also make it more difficult to jump over faregates.
The swing doors are made of polycarbonate which is 200 times stronger than glass, lighter weight, and more durable.
As stations are retrofitted with the new barriers, Metro is also raising the height of the fencing and emergency gates.