Just in case you’re off the news until the world is a little less chaotic and news, less grim, I want to share with you Metro’s calamitous budget difficulties.
The combined ridership on Metrorail and Metrobus in September 2020 is down nearly 80% from pre-pandemic levels. The impact on Metro’s budget is significant. Safety precautions put in place to protect the health of employees and customers have added new expenses, while revenue from fare collection has dried up. No Metrobus fares have been collected since March 2020, and Metrorail fares, which typically account for two-thirds of Metro’s total revenue, are extremely low.
The service provided today is only possible thanks to emergency federal funding in the CARES Act, but that money will soon run out. Without additional federal help and facing a nearly $500 million deficit, Metro is proposing severe service cuts, including:
- 19 stations would close — including Grosvenor-Strathmore
- Metro would be closed on weekends
- trains would come every 30 minutes on the weekdays except in busier parts of the District when they would come every 15 minutes
- bus route service would be slashed by more than half
- Metro will close two hours earlier, at 9 p.m
Stay tuned to see what we can do to save this vital transit because cuts this deep could irrevocably harm our area.