(Updated at 5:07 p.m.) Ward 1 Councilmember Brianne Nadeau is calling for an investigation into an incident that led to an arrest of a teen at the Columbia Heights Metro station Tuesday.
A video shared by the District’s Black Lives Matter group this week shows Metro Transit Police Department officers tripping an 18-year-old in handcuffs at the station. As reported by DCist and The Washington Post, officers arrested the young woman after she refused to throw away a lollipop and a bag of chips at the Metro stop, where consuming food is prohibited.
The video shows three Metro cops ordering a teen, who is handcuffed, to sit down. When she refuses, one of the officers trips her, knocking her to the ground.
The young woman was arrested for unlawful entry and taken to a D.C. Police station. Police later decided not to pursue charges, a Metro spokesman told the Post.
In a letter to Metro General Manager Paul Wiedefeld today, Nadeau said the video “indicates an excessive use of force for a violation of consuming food in a metro station.”
“I am extremely concerned that WMATA police officers took the measures they did in detaining this young woman,” Nadeau wrote. “Please conduct an investigation into the conduct of these officers. Please also describe to me what training WMTA police undergo for de-escalation tactics.”
According to Metro spokesman Dan Stessel, Metro police review use of force “whenever there is a public concern raised.”
“In addition, Metro GM Wiedefeld specifically asked MTPD Chief Pavlik to initiate such a review in this case,” Stessel continued.
Locals, including members of the D.C. business community, are encouraging supporters of late-night weekend trains to contact the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, which is holding a hearing and open house on its proposals at its headquarters Thursday.
The open house is scheduled for noon to 9 p.m. at 600 5th St. NW, while the hearing set for 12:30 to 10 p.m.
WMATA is considering four plans to adjust its operating hours in an effort to better maintain Metro’s infrastructure. According to the transit authority, the plans include:
D.C. residents and visitors are slated to have a new way to travel around Adams Morgan, Dupont Circle and downtown when they can’t — or don’t — want to use Metrorail.
Some Circulator buses are scheduled to get longer operating hours starting Sunday in an effort to help Red Line Metro riders during the next two months, according to the District Department of Transportation.
Metro trains won’t run between the Fort Totten and NoMa stations from Oct. 29 to Nov. 22 as part of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s SafeTrack repair work.
According to a DDOT news release, the Circulator service changes include:
- Morning service on the Woodley Park-Adams Morgan-McPherson Square, the Georgetown-Union Station and the Dupont- Georgetown-Rosslyn routes will begin an hour earlier at 6 am Monday through Friday.
- Late night service will be extended on the Georgetown-Union Station and the Dupont-Georgetown- Rosslyn routes until 3 am Friday and Saturday instead of 2 am.
- The Woodley Park-Adams Morgan-McPherson Square will continue to run until 3:30 am.
- Late night service on the Georgetown-Union Station route will be extended to run the full length of the route. Currently, the bus stops at McPherson Square Metro after 9 pm.
Metrorail riders have a limited amount of time to try out new Wi-Fi service at WMATA’s Metro Center, Gallery Place, Judiciary Square, Union Station, Archives and L’Enfant Plaza stations, the transit agency announced today.
For the next 45 days, commuters can log on for free while waiting for their trains.
“We are listening to our customers’ ideas about ways to improve their experience riding Metro,” Metro General Manager Wiedefeld said in a press release. “Having free access to Wi-Fi while on the platforms at Metrorail stations will allow customers to stay better connected while they travel.”
The test launch will also include a way to access Metro’s “Where’s My Train?” feature. Users will be able to launch the function from the landing page (pictured above) and tap train icons and stations for arrival times.
After the trial period ends, the service will be suspended and officials will evaluate how the program went. If all goes well, Metro could launch free Wi-Fi at all 91 of its stations at a later date.
Read more about the launch in Metro’s press release:
Fully animated advertisements might soon catch your eye at Metro stations across the District and the surrounding area.
A national billboard and transit ad company is working to install brand new digital displays at key stations across the city, according to Metro.
“Over the next few weeks, our partner OUTFRONT Media will be replacing some existing, static advertising dioramas in the Metrorail System with new 65″ digital panels,” said Metro representative Morgan Dye.
New video ads in the Metro. Interesting. pic.twitter.com/qteruCXxl9
— Tim Regan (@MrTimRegan) August 23, 2016
The displays, which loop video advertisements in crystal clear quality, were recently installed at seven Metro stations across the District, including Columbia Heights, Dupont Circle and McPherson Square, Dye said.
Additional digital displays are set to be installed soon at Metro’s Farragut West and Foggy Bottom stations, Dye added.
Here’s Metro’s full list of the stations included in the project’s first phase:
Advocates for restaurants and stores downtown and in Adams Morgan are blasting a Metro proposal to permanently cut its evening operating hours for train service, warning that the plan could have a dire effect on local businesses.
Officials with the Downtown and Adams Morgan Partnership business improvement districts said in statements yesterday that axing hours would leave workers and visitors without a major mode of transportation to and from their neighborhoods late at night on weekends.
The plan, which Metro general manager Paul Wiedefeld proposed this week, calls for the system’s closure at 10 p.m. on Sundays and midnight on other days, indefinitely, in an effort to better maintain Metro’s infrastructure. Before SafeTrack repairs in June brought midnight closures every day, trains ran until 3 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday mornings.
(Updated at 10:40 a.m.) The lights have come back on at the U Street Metro station after a power outage this morning.
Crews responded to the problem about 9:40 a.m., according to a tweet from the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s Metrorail Info account. By 10:30 a.m., the electricity was working again.
Although trains continued to run during the outage, delays were reported on the Green and Yellow lines.
Green/Yellow Line: Expect residual delays in both directions due to earlier unscheduled power repair at Shaw.
— Metrorail Info (@Metrorailinfo) July 25, 2016
GR/YL: trains held approx 10 min for crews to repair component in a local power room at Shaw. Trains moving, residual delays. 10:40a #wmata
— Metrorail Info (@Metrorailinfo) July 25, 2016
Photo by Courtney Brown
About two dozen young men and few other people converged on Dupont Circle this afternoon to vent their frustration over Metro’s delays and safety, demanding the privatization of the transit system.
Angered by Metro’s slow service and what they said are the system’s “hazardous” conditions, the demonstrators stood in a line near the Dupont station’s north entrance yelling, “Metro’s a loser! We took an Uber!”
Metro, which is undergoing a massive effort to rehabilitate its aging rail system, is “always a long delay,” the demonstrators chanted to the tune of “Tomorrow” from “Annie.”
The protesters also expressed their frustration by waving a collection of handmade signs that said, “Metro=Hazard Privatize Now,” “Can’t PokeGo Metro Slow,” “The Metro is More Lit Than My Mixtape” and “Bro, do you even Metro?”
When a Borderstan reporter asked one demonstrator for a comment, he declined.
“We can’t talk,” he said dismissively. “We’re protesting.”
The young man and his fellow demonstrators disbanded soon after.
That’s because the transit agency has again pushed back repairs of the “chillers” that help cool those Red Line stations.
“Metro’s contractor has completed pressure tests of the pipes under Connecticut Ave NW (off Metro property) that provide chilled air service to Dupont Circle and Farragut North stations,” Metro said in a statement last Friday. “The test results are currently being evaluated to determine next steps. Unfortunately, chilled air service has not yet been restored.”
The chillers stopped working last summer due to leaks in the 40-year-old pipe that feeds water into the system, officials said. Metro originally estimated it would repair those leaks by July 1, then again by July 16.
As for when those chillers might actually come online, Metro did not set a firm date.
“We are working with the contractor and other outside parties to resolve this issue as soon as possible,” the agency said. “In the meantime, tunnel fans will remain on at all times to provide air circulation to the two stations. We apologize for this inconvenience and thank you for your understanding.”
(Updated at 9:30 a.m.) A trash truck collided with a Metro bus in Logan Circle this morning.
The crash happened near the intersection of Vermont Ave. and 11th St. NW around 7:30 a.m. this morning, according Metro spokesman Richard Jordan.
Jordan said the bus was stopped when a trash truck drove its dumpster into it, shattering a window.
Nobody was injured in the collision, Jordan and D.C. Fire and EMS spokesman Doug Buchanan confirmed.
Two stations on Metro’s Red Line will likely be hotter than normal again this summer.
The Dupont Circle and Farragut North stations will begin the hot season without air conditioning thanks to broken pieces of equipment known as “chillers,” WMATA said earlier this month.
“Both Dupont Circle and Farragut North stations are cooled by a common chiller plant that is located in the median of Connecticut Avenue opposite the Farragut North L Street entrance,” read a press release. “Delivery of chilled air to the stations has been disrupted by a leak in the underground line that runs between the chiller plant and the stations.”
In order to fix the problem, Metro will dig up a portion of Connecticut Avenue and repair that leaky line. Though the transit agency has said the chillers could come back online as soon as July, we all know Metro has an issue with unexpected delays.
So, we want to know: do you think Metro will actually fix these chillers by July, or are we in for a red hot summer on the Red Line?
Your daily commute might be affected at some point over the next year as Metro embarks on a massive effort to rehabilitate its aging rail system.
Metro General Manager/CEO Paul J. Wiedefeld today announced its “SafeTrack” plan to “improve Metrorail safety and restore service reliability.” The plan includes 15 “safety surges” over the next year that will include closing stations at midnight all week and reducing service on many of its lines at various times, according to a press release.
“Metrorail riders will be encouraged to consider using alternate travel options while safety surge work is in effect on their line,” the press release cautions. At a press conference held this morning, Wiedefeld said “the level of service will go down during these surge periods.”
(Updated at 5:18 p.m.) Metro employees briefly closed the Dupont Circle Station’s south entrance after two escalators and the overhead lights inside lost power during rush hour earlier today.
Power was restored and the entrance reopened just before 5:20 p.m.
Conditions were treacherous as riders slowly made their way down the stopped escalator this afternoon. Several Metro employees and one D.C. Police officer were spotted helping riders down the escalator just before 5 p.m.
See a video of the outage below:
Riders slowly walking down the dark Dupont Circle escalators. Metro employees with flashlights helping pic.twitter.com/JGLH8l64rc
— Tim Regan (@MrTimRegan) April 21, 2016
Metro riders who use the Columbia Heights station are slated to have one less way to get in and out of it during the next several months, starting next week, according to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.
The entrance at the northeast corner of 14th and Irving streets NW is scheduled to close Monday for about nine months of work to install new escalators. Without the complete closure of the entryway, crews would spend about 18 months on the project, according to WMATA.
“Metro will begin installing two new entrance escalators on the east side of Columbia Heights Station, marking the final phase of a major capital project to replace all seven of the station’s escalators,” a WMATA notice says. “To date, five of the station’s escalators have been replaced with safer, more reliable units.”
Some frequent Metro bus riders and at least one Logan Circle community leader have differing opinions on whether to remove a shelter that covers a bus stop on 14th St. NW.
Members of Logan Circle’s ANC 2F voted last week to ask DDOT and WMATA to consider removing the shelter above the stop at 1336 14th St. NW. Among their concerns was that the stop was infrequently used, and sometimes attracted litter and the occasional loiterer.
Prior to last week’s meeting, a group of residents and a representative from the forthcoming Jinya Ramen bar came before the commission’s Community Development Committee and asked that the bus stop be removed altogether.