The WMATA is complaining again

27 03 2008

The WMATA is complaining again. I read in the Express this morning that the Metro is short over $400 million dollars to make necessary repairs. How can this be? Didn’t they just hike fares to help cover costs like this? (Seems to me they did. My train fare now costs $1.95 each way during rush hour as opposed to the former $1.65 each way.)


I love that one of the projects is replacing or repairing infrastructure damaged by water. Now, of course I can’t say where they are talking about specifically. But I’ve been around the Metro, and I can tell you that the Rosslyn station leaks constantly. Heck, last week, in the underground portion of the station, there was a major waterfall leaking from the ceiling. Now I laugh at this, because Metro will do what they always do – replace the floor tiles that are all cracked and broken from water getting underneath them, and replace the ceiling. Instead of repairing or replacing the infrastrucuture damaged by the water, how about figuring out why and how the water is getting there in the first place? Then, fix the water issue, and you want HAVE to replace tiles and ceilings on a monthly basis.

So this morning, after 45 minute long, 3 train commute, I got off the escalator and saw it. A sign. And I wondered for the hundredth time why the DC Metro posts signs saying that eating and drinking are not allowed on the Metro or in stations (with a fine of $100). I’ve never once seen the rule enforced, though I’ve seen hundreds of violations.

I looked into it a bit more, and found a PDF from the WMATA stating that it’s hard to enforce minor violations. It is? These violations are worth $100 a pop; the metro is hard up for cash and has plenty of repairs that need to be made. You mean that the five Metro employees I see on any given afternoon loitering the platform at Gallery Place or Metro Center can’t carry a little notebook with them and issue citations? Because really, that’s at least $1000 an hour. I’m sure THAT could help with little repairs here or there. (No disrespect to the Metro employees that actually DO their jobs).

Seems to me if you’re going to make a rule, then you ought to enforce it if you’re going to spend thousands of dollars printing the posters reminding people not to do it.

It seems that there is waste and mismanagement all around. Might be time to wipe the slate clean and start over.




One response

28 03 2008
Dharm Guruswamy

Your fares help go towards the operating budget. Major renovations and replacement of worn out of equipment comes from the capital budget. The former is funded from a combination of fares and government subsidies. In fact both fares and government subsidies will go up to balance next year’s fiscal year budget. The capital budget comes ENTIRELY from grants and subsidies from the federal, state, and WMATA compact members.

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