Orange line riders battle a rush hour problem at East Falls Church in 2008. Metro is hoping its Rush Plus service will ease crowding on the lines between the suburbs and the District during rush hour.
Metro is rolling out a new rush-hour schedule today. The program is called Rush Plus, and the transit agency hopes the realignment of trains will lead to less crowding and quicker commutes.
Under the changes, three trains will be added to the orange and yellow lines during every hour of rush hour. WMATA expects the shift to improve service for more than a 100,000 people.
Riders on the blue line could see longer wait times at certain stations, however, as every third blue line train will actually be a Yellow line train during rush house.
The goal is to ease crowding and provide a quicker commute between Northern Virginia and the District. A total of 21 stations will get more trains during rush hour. When Silver line to Dulles gets roled out, they'll be adding additional trains.
The challenge for Metro today, however, is make sure riders are aware of all of the changes. For example, under Rush Plus, some orange line trains will now end at Largo Towne Center, while others will still end at New Carrolton.
Vicki Lee, a rider embarking on her commute from Pentagon City to Alexandria, said she's hoping for the best from Rush Plus.
"It's still pretty new, so I'm not sure if its' going to cut time off my commute," she says.
As for Katherine Casey, who was at Courthouse this morning — she said her commute on the Orange line was unchanged. "It was pretty much the same as always, not too much was different at all," Casey said.
Metro is advising people to keep a close eye on both the color of the incoming train as well as its destination. A full list of the Rush plus changes are available here.