Beginning in early June, Glenmont, Wheaton, Forest Glen, Silver Spring, and Takoma stations on the Red Line will be closed.  -  Photo: WMATA

Beginning in early June, Glenmont, Wheaton, Forest Glen, Silver Spring, and Takoma stations on the Red Line will be closed.

Photo: WMATA

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) announced plans for major capital construction over the next three years to modernize the Metrorail system, improve safety and reliability, and maintain a state of good repair.

Planned closures are scheduled between summer 2024 and summer 2026, with additional construction planned over the winter holidays.

WMATA’s Planned Capital Program

Beginning in early June, Glenmont, Wheaton, Forest Glen, Silver Spring, and Takoma stations on the Red Line will be closed. The closure will continue through early September with the possibility of reducing the work zone to allow Takoma Station to reopen prior to the end of construction.

The planned work includes upgrading the signaling system, installing communication and train control cables, and repairing the interlocking — which allows trains to cross from one track to the other outside the Takoma Station.

Detailed service plans, including free express and local shuttle buses, are being developed and will be announced at least one month prior to the start of the closure.

The work is being planned in coordination with the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) Purple Line Project to build a new mezzanine on the platform at WMATA’s Silver Spring Station to provide easier access between WMATA and the future MTA Purple Line.

The Maryland Purple Line light rail line is not part of the Metrorail system, but building the new connection between the two will require the use of both tracks for an extended period and can’t be completed safely and timely with single tracking only.

Additional work includes leak mitigation, automatic train control system replacements, traction power cables installation, drain pumping station replacement, tunnel standpipe replacement, and elevator and escalator maintenance.

Plan Execution

Improvements in planning and scheduling track work through summer, winter, and extended weekend outages instead of extensive single tracking, have also helped reduce the amount of planned service disruptions.

In the past seven years, the impact on budgeted service declined by half to just 4% with more weekends free of track work on almost all lines.

Following the Red Line closure this summer, major construction is planned through Summer 2026.

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