They plan to shut down the metro for 6 months:

Metro’s top officials warned Wednesday that the transit system is in such need of repair that they might shut down entire rail lines for as long as six months for maintenance, potentially snarling thousands of daily commutes and worsening congestion in the already traffic-clogged region.

Board Chairman Jack Evans and General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld put rail riders on notice about possible extended closures at a high-level conference of local leaders.

The discussion also revealed strong resistance to what Evans said was a “dire” need for more than $1 billion a year in additional funding for Metro.

The officials’ comments underlined the depth of Metro’s problems, which are steadily becoming more apparent as Wiedefeld continues to probe the rail system’s defects since taking over as the transit agency’s chief executive in November.

Until now, Metro has typically done repair work at night or during short shutdowns over weekends.
Photos: What Washington looked like during the Metro shutdown

An exception was the unprecedented shutdown of the entire system on a regular workday March 16 for emergency track safety inspections. Wiedefeld ordered that closure in what now seems to have been an initial taste of more bitter medicine to follow.

“The system right now, in order to do the maintenance that needs to be done, cannot be done on three hours a night and on weekends. It just can’t,” said Evans, who also is a D.C. Council member (D-Ward 2).

“So in order to do repairs that are necessary, it may come to the point where we have to close the entire Blue Line for six months. People will go crazy. But there are going to be hard decisions that have to be made in order to get this fixed,” Evans said.

Although he twice singled out the Blue Line as a candidate for closure, Evans said any of Metro’s six lines could be shuttered in full or in part.

He said the Red Line was the least likely to be shut, because much repair work has already been done on it.

“That’s up to Paul [Wiedefeld]. He’s the operations guy. I’m just the board member,” Evans said.

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  1. Steamboat McGoo says:

    I wonder how all those other cities around the world that have subways have coped with this maintenance problem, and if they too require a billion dollars a year to maintain their systems?

    I kinda doubt it. I smell a rat, and it’s least offensive odor is simple gouging & chiseling.

  2. Leonard Jones says:

    I am with Master Steamboat on this. I too detect the aroma of a species of
    vermin that usually resides in a subterranean environment. I see this as
    just another case of a bureaucrat begging for increased funding.

    If the system is that far gone, ten times that much funding will not even make
    a dent. I have worked dozens of refinery shutdowns as a millwright and more
    than 100 paper mill shutdowns as a maintenance employee. The refinery
    shutdowns were often a month or more in duration, and the ones in the paper
    mills were usually 1 day every 6 weeks and one big one for a week or two
    each year.

    If the guy doing the begging is honest, he is admitting that his department is
    so far behind the ball in repairs that they could never catch up with overnight
    shutdowns. I have no doubt this could be the case, because civil servants
    are the laziest cock-suckers on the planet. Given the MO of the
    thoroughly corrupt Democrat party, this guy’s predecessor could have
    greased some mayors palm, and simply warmed a bench for years.

    When that racist hurricane hit New Orleans, there was NOT ONE person
    in the city, county or state government that ever bothered to read the
    fucking disaster preparedness plans! These problems do not seem
    to effect Republican states. Florida and the other Gulf states get
    shit-hammered by hurricanes all the time without serious issues.

    It is easy to understand that a campaign donor or crony of Blanco,
    or Ray Nagin (AKA the Chocolate Mayor,) never bothered to read up
    on their jobs. And since we are talking about Democrats, what member
    of the guys staff would complain about not having to do anything?
    We are after all, talking about highly unionized and mostly affirmative
    action hires here.

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