News and notes from Reston (tm).

Friday, August 22, 2008

Metro Silver Line: And we haven't even reminded people to keep clapping for months!

Breaking news: Apparently the not-quite-dead-yet Silver Line has been given another jolt of CPR:

Federal officials have offered another signal that a $5.2 billion Metrorail extension to Dulles International Airport is on track to receive federal funding by the end of the year, giving project officials the green light to begin construction in the heart of Tysons Corner.
Sweet! We look forward to years of traffic tie-ups in the heart of "Fairfax County's downtown," or whatever godawful slogan they're using to market Tysons Corner these days, now that the over-not-under folks have gone home to take a nap or whatever. That traffic will continue until 2325, or whenever the Silver Line is supposed to officially open and we can take the Metro from Wiehle Avenue to somewhere just west of Tysons Corner, where we'll perish in an epic track fire within sight of the Linens 'N Whatnots.
The FTA's letter further dims hope for those still pushing for a tunnel through the Tysons Corner portion of the rail line. The project was delayed more than a year by a grass-roots effort to force the line underground to maximize redevelopment potential in Tysons and avoid the unsightliness of an elevated track. The effort has waned as a number of political leaders, including Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D), determined that a tunnel would be too expensive and that pursuing it could jeopardize federal funding. At Kaine's insistence, the FTA is reviewing the aerial alignment only.
But for tunnel backers, there is one consolation:
That larger tunnel is not to be confused with a smaller tunnel that project officials are preparing to dig through Tysons. Plans call for an aboveground alignment through most of Tysons, including four stations -- two on Route 123 and two in the median of Route 7. But the tracks must dip underground briefly through an elevation rise where routes 123 and 7 meet.
And the good news for the rest of us?
The excavation will require a staging area and traffic disruptions along Route 123. Such disruptions are likely to intensify through the fall.
Guess we won't be going to the Olive Garden anytime soon.

No comments:

Post a Comment

(If you don't see comments for some reason, click here).