Metro’s Platform Improvement Project is moving to the western side of the Orange Line next summer with plans to rebuild the deteriorating platforms at Vienna, Dunn Loring, West Falls Church, and East Falls Church stations and advance major infrastructure work along the 7-mile rail segment.
While full service information will be announced in March, Metro is advising customers today that three stations will be closed between Memorial Day and Labor Day 2020:
- Dunn Loring
- East Falls Church
West Falls Church Station will remain open during the project, because it is equipped with two platforms that can be reconstructed one at a time. The station will become the western terminus of the Orange Line during the summer months. Orange Line service will operate less frequently than normal from the station.
East Falls Church Station will be closed to customers; however, Orange and Silver line trains will be permitted to pass through the station using a single track through the work area. This will allow Silver Line stations from McLean to Wiehle-Reston East to remain open, but with reduced service.
Metro will again partner with local jurisdictions and transportation agencies to develop alternative travel options, including free shuttle buses and other mitigation plans. Specific travel alternatives and rail service details will be announced in early March along with extensive public outreach efforts to maximize awareness of the project and its impacts.
In order to be more cost effective, four Green/Yellow stations that had been considered for platform reconstruction next summer will be rescheduled to a later phase of the project.
Metro completed the first phase of the Platform Improvement Project in 2019, with six stations successfully reconstructed on the Blue and Yellow lines in Virginia. With all service closed south of Reagan National Airport during the summer, Metro provided shuttle bus service that successfully provided 26,000 trips per weekday. The stations reopened on time in September, and work continued with minimal customer impact through the end of the year.
Metro will follow a similar construction strategy used for the first phase of the Platform Improvement Project. Due to the heavy construction nature of this project, tracks are taken out of service to allow for demolition of existing structures, access to the construction area and other essential infrastructure work. By utilizing an extended shutdown during summer months, Metro can provide contractors with 24-hour access to the work sites. This approach improves safety while significantly reducing project duration as workers do not have to repeatedly set-up and break down equipment.
As the station platforms are reconstructed, Metro will use the time to make improvements that enhance customer experience with a higher level of safety, accessibility and convenience. Key customer experience improvements include new slip-resistant tiles, brighter energy-efficient LED lighting, larger digital display screens, new stainless-steel platform shelters with charging ports and new surveillance systems.
Following Summer 2020, the remaining 10 stations scheduled for platform reconstruction are: Addison Road, Arlington Cemetery, Cheverly, College Park-U of Md, Greenbelt, Landover, New Carrollton, Prince George’s Plaza, Reagan National Airport and West Hyattsville.
Watch a simulation video here to experience a traveler’s windshield view and an aerial view.
The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) will open the new diverging diamond interchange over Interstate 95 at Exit 140 (Courthouse Road) in Stafford County on Saturday, Dec. 7.
The interchange opening is a major milestone in the $195 million project to expand capacity and improve travel in Stafford County’s Courthouse Road area.
Diverging Diamond Interchanges (DDIs) lower the number of conflict points between vehicles by eliminating left turns. The new interchange briefly shifts vehicles on Courthouse Road to the other side of the road on new overpass bridges, which allows drivers to merge left onto the I-95 northbound and southbound ramps without stopping at a traffic signal.
On Saturday, Dec. 7, crews will open the new interchange to traffic, with assistance from Virginia State Police and local law enforcement. Opening the interchange early Saturday will allow crews to take advantage of lighter traffic volumes.
In addition to the interchange opening on Dec. 7, motorists can expect:
• On eastbound Courthouse Road, all three travel lanes will open in the diverging diamond interchange
• At Route 1, a new four-lane Hospital Center Boulevard extension will open west of Route 1 and connect directly to the diverging diamond interchange on Courthouse Road through a new Wyche Road intersection
• On westbound Courthouse Road, all three travel lanes will open in the diverging diamond interchange, but the road will narrow to two westbound travel lanes just before Austin Ridge Drive
• Courthouse Road west of Austin Ridge Drive will remain reduced to one lane in each direction until late December 2019, when all four lanes will open between the I-95 interchange and Ramoth Church Road/Winding Creek Road
I-95 Southbound Exit Ramp Detour
On December 7, three of the new Exit 140 interchange ramps will open, but the I-95 southbound exit ramp to Courthouse Road will remain in a detour pattern until late December 2019.
Motorists traveling from I-95 southbound to Courthouse Road should follow the posted detour signs to access the new Courthouse Road.
Traffic will be detoured for several weeks to allow crews to build the new exit ramp and raise its elevation to match the height of the new diverging diamond interchange and I-95 overpass bridges. Courthouse Road traffic is currently traveling in the location where this construction work must occur, once the ramp is detoured on December 7.
What Motorists Can Expect
Message boards will be posted beginning the week of December 2 on I-95, Route 1, Courthouse Road and other connecting roads to alert travelers to the Dec. 7 interchange opening.
Numerous signs and pavement markings will guide drivers through the diverging diamond interchange.
All work has been scheduled weather permitting. For real-time updates on lane closures and the opening of the diverging diamond interchange:
• Check 511virginia.org or call 511 from any phone in Virginia
• Visit the project page at www.virginiadot.org/exit140
• See news releases in the VDOT Fredericksburg District online newsroom
• Follow VDOT Fredericksburg District on Twitter @VaDOTFRED
• Join the VDOT Fredericksburg District Facebook group page
Community Meeting on Diverging Diamond Interchange on Monday, Dec. 2.
The public is invited to attend a community meeting on Monday, Dec. 2 at Colonial Forge High School to learn more about diverging diamond interchanges and the Exit 140 project.
VDOT staff will deliver a brief presentation, and attendees can watch a simulation video and participate in a walk-through DDI exhibit with signs and pavement markings similar to the Courthouse Road interchange.
The meeting will be held:
Monday, Dec. 2
Colonial Forge High School
550 Courthouse Road
Stafford, VA 22554
*A brief presentation will be delivered at 5:30 p.m.
VDOT staff will be available to answer questions throughout the meeting.
Construction on the Exit 140 interchange and Courthouse Road widening project began in July 2017. All work will be finished by July 31, 2020.
After the new four-lane portion of Courthouse Road opens to traffic west of Austin Ridge Drive in late December 2019, construction crews will focus on finishing the following project elements in 2020:
• Expanded Park & Ride commuter parking at Exit 140: New Park & Ride lots are under construction north and south of the future Old Courthouse Road. Together, the lots will offer around 1,100 parking spaces. The southern lot will have a dedicated pickup and dropoff area for buses, carpools, and vanpools.
• New sidewalk and shared use path: Crews will continue building new sidewalk from the Park & Ride lots east along Old Courthouse Road to the Stafford County Government Center, and a shared use path from Austin Ridge Drive to the Park & Ride lots through the interchange. A new, shared use path from Winding Creek Elementary School near the Ramoth Church Road/Winding Creek Road intersection to west of Austin Ridge Drive will open on Dec. 7.
Courthouse Road carries an average of 16,000 vehicles a day and around 136,000 vehicles a day travel on I-95 near Exit 140.
To learn more on this project, please visit the project page at www.VirginiaDOT.org/Exit140 and VDOT’s innovative intersections and interchanges page on diverging diamond interchanges (DDI).
VDOT’s 14-county Fredericksburg District includes the counties of Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania and Stafford in the Fredericksburg area; Northumberland, Richmond, Lancaster and Westmoreland counties in the Northern Neck; Essex, Gloucester, King & Queen, King William, Mathews and Middlesex counties in the Middle Peninsula.