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


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.”



But seriously, this sounds bonkers all around.

Brendan reports:

“At around 1pm today, the manager of the Chopt in Union Station assaulted a customer upset that he’d been waiting half an hour for a salad he’d called ahead for that they were late to make. The Manager tried to take his phone, made a mess, and wrestled w/the Customer. The customer was allowed to leave after police were called. The Manager was taken away in Handcuffs.

It was insane. All the guy did was get upset that his salad was late, and say he was gonna write a bad review. Both of which he’s entitled to do. The Manager went nuts on him.”


From the Union Station Redevelopment Corporation:

“On Friday, February 8th at 1:00 pm, the National Symphony Orchestra, led by the Kennedy Center’s Music Director, Gianandrea Noseda, will present a free concert in Union Station’s Main Hall.

This performance marks the third time that the NSO will visit Union Station as part of its commitment to engaging communities beyond the Kennedy Center and sharing live classical music with new audiences.

Come one, come all for what is sure to be a spectacular performance featuring soloist and Concertmaster Nurit Bar-Josef and Principal Trombone Craig Mulcahy, along with selections from Gustav Holst‘s The Planets.

The planned repertoire is: Read More


From a press release:

“On Thursday, November 29, 2018 in the Main Hall of Union Station, a consortium of partners including Washington Performing Arts, the Royal Norwegian Embassy, the Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce–Mid-Atlantic Chapter, the Bach Project, and Union Station present a holiday celebration event, with performances by local artists, the annual Norwegian Christmas tree lighting, an appearance by Santa Claus, and culminating in a simulcast of Yo-Yo Ma’s performance of J.S. Bach’s complete cello suites live from the National Cathedral, presented by Washington Performing Arts in memory of Isaac Stern.

For more than 20 years, Norway has presented a Christmas tree to the people of Washington, in recognition of its strong friendship with the United States and in gratitude for America’s assistance during and after World War II. This year’s Christmas tree is made possible by Equinor, Kongsberg Gruppen, Nammo Inc., Innovation Norway, and Insitu Inc.

Complete Schedule of Events Read More


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