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Old 01-12-2012, 02:53 PM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,852,182 times
Reputation: 42860

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsuric View Post

I know a lot of people who could take metro to work but choose not to.
Me too. Sometimes I wonder how many of the people who end up living in TODs will actually take metro to work. Back in my 20s I lived in an apartment building near the Green Line in Los Angeles, and the reality was that all the people I knew in that building ended up driving to work anyway. Granted I only knew 4-5 people in that building, but still--things like that make you think. I kind of hate to admit it, because I'm a fan of taking the train when you can, but that's what can happen. (My problem was my work moved to a new site that wasn't near a station).
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:07 PM
 
371 posts, read 731,171 times
Reputation: 176
I think the weekend parking charge idea would actually backfire. Whenever I use the metro on weekends (which isn't often), I see mostly families on the train. Right now it is close to whether its worth paying a little extra to ride the metro vs driving in. If they started imposing a parking fee, then I would almost definately just drive.

I also think metro should reduce parking fees at metro stations. With so many federal government jobs and other employers issuing metro checks to employees, the train ride is free (or close to it), but you have to pay for parking. If someone were making the decision of whether or not to drive and park for free or pay to park at the metro, then it becomes more expensive to take the metro.
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:28 PM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
4,489 posts, read 9,562,744 times
Reputation: 3656
Raising weekend fares or parking will just ensure that I never take metro to get downtown. I used to do it--when we'd go out to dinner/drinks with friends in Dupont, or to the DC Improv off of Farragut. But then I realized that for my husband and I to drive and park would cost $15, tops. To take the metro both ways would be minimum $14 for the two of us. For the dollar, I'd rather save the hassle of driving to the metro station, finding parking, waiting for a train (infrequent late at night), etc.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:06 PM
 
Location: In the woods
3,315 posts, read 8,781,286 times
Reputation: 1510
Well, it figures with all the construction they're doing. I saw an article in the Washington Post about the Purple Line and how much $$$ it will cost to buy out homeowners and/or property in the planned route.

And what were the geniuses thinking when they built outdoor escalators? It was one of the stupidest things I noticed when I first moved to DC and started using metro. Every time I go back to NYC and take the subway, I definitely notice the lack of escalators and use of concrete steps and ramps.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:47 PM
 
Location: NOVA
4,521 posts, read 5,219,292 times
Reputation: 1926
Default Not my Metro recommendations

OP here. I included the link to one of the better articles on this topic vs. cut/pasting the same article. Those recommendations for the Metro folks weren't mine. Those I DID cut/paste and left the authors name to give credit.

I will add to the list of impossible elevator-would-be-stairs as Bethesda and Medical Center. If those three elevators died, many humans would also expire a short time later.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:54 PM
 
19,183 posts, read 28,345,113 times
Reputation: 4002
Quote:
Originally Posted by Natthapol View Post
I am already paying $14.50 everyday for parking and riding roundtrip from Vienna Metro to Faragut West and that's already an insane amount for public transportation! I've heard that roundtrip shuttle fare from Ashburn to DC is only $12..
If it's that big a deal, why not drive a few more minutes to Dunn Loring and save yourself 70 cents each way?

Otherwise, all that stands between Metro and a world class service is a dedicated source of funding. The problems are not with management or unions or that the system is accesible to the handicapped. It's money. They don't get nearly what they need from annual federal and state sources. They don't want to dump on you, so they have to go begging to local governments who routinely behave like cowards. Enact a regional sales or real estate surcharge that goes directly to Metro so that they know what their budget is from year to year.

Keep in mind that while the figure varies slightly over time, fares paid by riders cover only about 55% of Metro's annual operating costs. They are forced to go scrounge the rest up somewhere.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:53 PM
 
Location: NOVA
4,521 posts, read 5,219,292 times
Reputation: 1926
Lightbulb It takes money to move the Metro

Quote:
Originally Posted by saganista View Post
If it's that big a deal, why not drive a few more minutes to Dunn Loring and save yourself 70 cents each way?

Otherwise, all that stands between Metro and a world class service is a dedicated source of funding. The problems are not with management or unions or that the system is accesible to the handicapped. It's money. They don't get nearly what they need from annual federal and state sources. They don't want to dump on you, so they have to go begging to local governments who routinely behave like cowards. Enact a regional sales or real estate surcharge that goes directly to Metro so that they know what their budget is from year to year.

Keep in mind that while the figure varies slightly over time, fares paid by riders cover only about 55% of Metro's annual operating costs. They are forced to go scrounge the rest up somewhere.
I have to disagree with you. Almost half of the Metro's budget is consumed by wages - over $600 million a year. And why does Metro need to spend $17 million a year in advertising. We all know it's there. We already know what service is provided. Nobody is going to make a special visit DC to come see the Metro because of a Google Ad. Last year, the American Reinvestment Act (TARP, Stimulus, etc) gave the Metro $200 million and since their overall bond/debt still exceeds $380 million, they need money.

Link to Metro budget:
http://wmata.com/about_metro/board_o...JuneReport.pdf

Link to Metro wages - how many make over $100k: http://greatergreaterwashington.org/...s-really-make/

Last edited by johnsonkk; 01-12-2012 at 08:07 PM..
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:19 PM
 
Location: Virginia
8,106 posts, read 12,657,381 times
Reputation: 3760
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliTerp07 View Post
Raising weekend fares or parking will just ensure that I never take metro to get downtown. I used to do it--when we'd go out to dinner/drinks with friends in Dupont, or to the DC Improv off of Farragut. But then I realized that for my husband and I to drive and park would cost $15, tops. To take the metro both ways would be minimum $14 for the two of us. For the dollar, I'd rather save the hassle of driving to the metro station, finding parking, waiting for a train (infrequent late at night), etc.
Same here. We go into the District only a couple of times a year. When we do it is usually on a weekend and we drive. The last time I went in during a weekday on Metro (years ago) we had to buy a plastic fare card in addition to paying the parking fee for the garage in Springfield. I thought that stunk and wondered what tourist thought about having to pay for a plastic fare card that they might only use once.
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Old 01-13-2012, 04:36 AM
 
19,183 posts, read 28,345,113 times
Reputation: 4002
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsonkk View Post
I have to disagree with you. Almost half of the Metro's budget is consumed by wages - over $600 million a year.
Are you surprised by this? It takes more than 100 people per mile of track to keep the system running. The average salary paid to Metro employees is in the $50-60K range. How much do you think this can actually be reduced without losing workers and applicants?

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsonkk View Post
And why does Metro need to spend $17 million a year in advertising. We all know it's there. We already know what service is provided. Nobody is going to make a special visit DC to come see the Metro because of a Google Ad.
It seems then that you are not among the target audience, and $17 million per year is peanuts. Do you object to companies buying Super Bowl ads and passing the ridiculous cost of those on to you? Do you suspect that any of those ads will be presented by companies that you have never heard of?

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsonkk View Post
Last year, the American Reinvestment Act (TARP, Stimulus, etc) gave the Metro $200 million and since their overall bond/debt still exceeds $380 million, they need money.
Metro needs money every year, because every year it has no idea what part of the 45% of operating budget costs already committed to is actually going to be forthcoming as the result of its annual grovelling and begging show in front of federal, state, and local officials. (All of that of course is done by expensive attorneys and lobbists.)

Running a rail system is a long-term enterprise. We are riding today on the system that was planned through about 2000. We are planning today for the system we will ride on in 2020. You can't do rational or effective planning without a grasp on funding. You can't keep to plan when you routinely receive tens and hundreds of millions of dollars less each year than what you needed and planned on.

You want a first-class system? Put it on at least a third-class funding basis. Right now, it is on a third-world funding basis that will lead only to worsening product and service.
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Old 01-13-2012, 08:59 AM
 
267 posts, read 441,054 times
Reputation: 240
I've spoken with a few former Metro workers and they said the main problem is that the organization is not run like a business or even a public utility.

Its basically an urban "make-work" program. Efficiency and quality are not stressed and there's minimal employee accountability.
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