The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) has approved a $4.5 billion budget to increase service and discounted fares for Metro users as they continue to work to return more 6000-series and 7000-series rail cars to service.
Highlights of the approved package include cheaper late-night and weekend fares and more frequent bus and rail service. This includes:
- Free bus fares on any regular Metrobus route when transferring to/from rail with $2 transfer discount
- $2 for any one-way trip all weekend on Metrorail
- $2 for any one-way trip after 9:30 p.m. on Metrorail
- Metrorail and Metrobus Unlimited Passes would cost $64-$192 instead of $72-$216
- Ride unlimited Metrorail and Metrobus for a week for $29
- Frequent bus service network with buses scheduled every 12 or 20 minutes on 36 of the most popular Metrobus lines
- Increased service on 22 bus routes to address crowding
- Improved all-day train frequencies during weekday peak and off-peak hours
- Improved late-night train frequencies after 9:30 p.m. seven days per week
- Improved all-day weekend train frequencies on all lines
- Support launch of rail service to seven new stations (Silver Line Phase 2 and Potomac Yard)
The service and fare changes will go into effect on or about July 1.
WMATA also sent a letter to the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission on Thursday detailing how Metro is restoring rail service for the region.
In the letter, WMATA says they plan to return 50 6000-series rail cars by May. Once an additional eight, 6000-series trains are returned to service, WMATA says they expect to increase Green and Yellow Line service to 15-minute headways in May.
They also play to deploy a new inspection protocol to return a limited number of 7000-series rail cars. Due to the ongoing 7000-series railcar investigation, service improvements from the approved package would go into effect after 7000-series railcars return to service.