The Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority will not close an entire line for repairs, the top Metro official said Tuesday.
Metro General Paul Wiedefeld said the repairs needed to improve the Metro can be done by temporarily shutting down sections of the tracks, The Washington Post reported. The repairs can also be made during the overnight hours when the Metro is closed.
Last week Jack Evans, the chair of WMATA’s Board of Directors, said that the board considered closing an entire line for as long as six months to deal with repairs. Evans, who is also a D.C. Council member representing Foggy Bottom, specifically mentioned closing the blue line for an extended period twice during a meeting with The Washington Post.
Wiedefeld is now retracting that claim, saying that the repairs can be done in a shorter time frame than six months and can be done most efficiently by closing lines in sections, rather than closing an entire line for a longer amount of time.
“I don’t see any need for a long closure of any part of the system,” Wiedefeld said.
A Metro official, who spoke under the condition of anonymity to the Washington Post, said officials have considered three possible repair plans. One plan has sections of a line shut down for a couple weeks at a time. Another would have a line shut down for several weeks but on weekends only. The third plan requires more trains single-tracking in the early morning and late at night.
An official plan for repairing the Metro system will be announced in the next few weeks, Wiedefeld said.