Saturday, January 19, 2008

A different day

Never take the full-functioning Metro Center for granted.
There was major platform work at the most important junction, and trains on 1, 2, 3 lines were single-tracked, letting one train pass at a time, downtown. Getting to DC Youth Orchestra without the car available was different this weekend. It should have taken less than an hour, but with the waiting for the train to pass through the one-tracked section it took 25 extra minutes.

On the way back, it was obvious that the bus was the better way to go. 11 minute train wait, or a 62 bus ready to go. A quick ride to Petworth, where condo construction had scattered the on-street terminals. A crowded 70 bus was there to board, and at the convention center, a Circulator bus was conveniently in sight. Time: 1hr and 10 minutes.

This is atypical of DC, but in New York, they do this type of construction every weekend. This is hardly a big disruptions, as there are four tracks on much of the line. So most of the work involves switching trains from local to express, express to local. However, there was one priceless experience. Skipping 10 stops on an abandoned center track. (N-train to Coney Island, in Brooklyn.) There used to be regular train service there, in the 1960's.
I could go on about all the unique things- the multitude of abandoned platforms and stations
DC just has two plain tracks and 80-something well-planned stations.

A simple diagram: Metro Center

work*_____{ }__ R ^Chinatown
to Virginia ______ *_________{______} O/B to Fed Triangle

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