Washington, DC

Photo by Emily Gallt

Emily asks us: “Hey PoPville have you heard any updates on how the Amtrak and wmata negotiations are going here? It’s getting ridiculous!”

WMATA tells me this morning:

“OK good news: things are moving forward. Metro received approval from Amtrak to access their property and install new pipes to restore chilled air service. Our crews underwent Amtrak-required training last night, and work starts today. 6-10 days to install new pipes, recharge the system and get it back online.

The chiller system at Union Station dates back to the original construction of Metro, meaning it has been in service since 1976. It is scheduled for full replacement this winter.

This video from a few years ago provides some background on how a chiller system works: Read More



“Solar panels capable of powering 1,500 homes will soon be installed at four Metro-owned facilities. In a request for proposals (RFP) issued today, Metro is offering a 15-year solar ground lease to develop and operate solar photovoltaic (PV) power systems on surface and rooftop parking lots at Anacostia, Cheverly, Naylor Road and Southern Avenue stations. Read More


“Dear PoPville,

I live near 14th and U St. I just returned after living abroad for the last two+ years and noticed that my 15 year old building shakes with the not-so-new trains they installed in the metro a few years ago. They’re running the new trains faster and they are heavier which is why my bldg (a block and a half from the metro is now shaking, in particular felt in the morning). Read More


Photo by PoPville flickr user nevermindtheend

WUSA9 reports:

“Metro now says that it is losing $26 million to fare evasion on Metrobus and an additional $10 million on Metrorail. But a transit agency spokesman underscored that it’s much harder to count losses on Metrorail–and these latest estimates could be smaller than reality.”


Photo by PoPville flickr user washingtonydc

“Dear PoPville,

Any news about the broken air conditioning at the Union Station metro? It’s been months. One of these days someone is going to faint on the platform.”

I inquired with WMATA’s spokesman who tells me:

“There is a leak in the pipe that feeds chilled water to the system. (As background, Metro’s underground stations are not “air conditioned” in the traditional sense, but use what is called a chiller system that relies on circulating water to knock down the temperature 6-10 degrees below ambient outdoor air temps.) The leaking pipe is off Metro property, in an area of the station controlled by Amtrak, so we need their approval in order to fix the issue. On June 12, we submitted plans to Amtrak and asked for their approval to do the work, which should only take a few days. We are awaiting their response, and have followed up as recently as today.”



Subscribe to our mailing list