Silver Line on track to begin limited service this summer

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority reached an agreement April 24 that put the Silver Line on track to begin limited service sometime this summer.

The Silver Line is the first major extension added to the track in 38 years and will provide service to Northern Virginia, according to a Washington Post report. Phase Two construction, which includes a Dulles International Airport station, is already underway and is projected to be completed by 2018, according to a WMATA service plan.

MWAA, the company overseeing construction, officially handed over the project to WMATA but will still be allowed to finish up certain construction projects, such as installing track circuits and completing track work, according to a WMATA press release. WMATA will take full control of the Silver Line once main construction ends.

The agreement should speed up the $5.6 billion project, which is already $150 million over-budget and seven months behind the original December 2013 opening date, according to the Washington Post. If construction finishes on schedule, WMATA could take control of the project as early as May, allowing for an additional 90 days of testing, employee training and emergency drills, the WMATA press release explained.

lsandoval@theeagleonline.com

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