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Holiday Station Closures To Become Common

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Metro's CFO mentioned some station's names could go up for corporate bidding.
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Metro's CFO mentioned some station's names could go up for corporate bidding.

The Foggy Bottom Metro station will be closed throughout next week's Martin Luther King holiday weekend for major track work. These kinds of station closures are going to become more and more common.

Metro has started a new "holiday tradition": any time a federal holiday creates a three day weekend, it closes down one or more stations for maintenance.

Jim Hughes, Metro's director of planning, says by shutting down a station, Metro can accomplish in one weekend what would otherwise require six or seven weekends of single-tracking.

"We have a lot of track work to do and we're catching up on a lot of safety improvements," Hughes says. "We're probably going to use every three-day weekend that we can."

Hughes says, on average, Metro ridership on federal holidays is less than half of what it normally is. But he acknowledges the closures inconvenience people, especially next weekend's closure, which comes during the dead of winter.

Hughes' advice to riders who will have to take a shuttle bus instead of a train: bundle up.

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