Metro: Silver Line ridership remains strong, September 24, 2014

Metro: Silver Line ridership remains strong, September 24, 2014

Metro today provided updated Silver Line ridership information showing that, less than two months after opening, the new line is already performing at 60 percent of its projected ridership for the end of the first full year of service. As of last week, an average of 15,000 riders are entering the system at the five new Silver Line stations on weekdays for a combined 30,000 trips to or from the new stations.

In the planning process, Silver Line ridership was projected to reach 25,000 boardings at the five new stations after one full year of service.

Metro estimates that the Silver Line is currently adding approximately 6,000 new riders -- making roughly 12,000 trips -- to the Metrorail system each weekday. The balance, approximately 9,000 riders, are primarily former Orange Line riders who have switched to the Silver Line.

Wiehle-Reston East remains the Silver Line’s commuting powerhouse, having already surpassed first-year ridership projections with 8,400 boardings, or 16,800 weekday entries and exits. With convenient bus transfers, a secure bike room and a large parking garage, Wiehle-Reston East’s commute makes up around half the line’s ridership.

Tysons Corner Station is one of the few stations on the Metrorail system where ridership is higher on Saturday than regular weekdays. The station is the second busiest new station on weekdays with about 5,300 entries and exits, but Saturday ridership has been even higher. This past Saturday (September 20), there were 7,449 entries and exits at the station.

“In addition to being a great way to travel in Virginia and DC, we are pleased to see the Silver Line is also connecting the region more broadly,” said Metro General Manager and CEO Richard Sarles. “On weekday mornings, nearly 10 percent of riders entering at the five new Silver Line stations are bound for stations in Maryland, and 17 percent of the riders exiting at the five new Virginia stations start their trips in Maryland.”

Ridership Highlights:
  • 23 percent of Silver Line riders are transferring from bus and using SmarTrip.
  • 12 percent of Silver Line riders are parking at the Wiehle-Reston East parking garage.
  • 57 percent of Silver Line riders are going to the District of Columbia.
  • The top five destinations for Silver Line riders are (in order): Farragut West, McPherson Square, Ballston, Foggy Bottom, and Metro Center.
  • Reverse commuting ridership on the Silver Line is also strong at 3,000 riders per day. 
  • Silver Line rail service began at noon on Saturday, July 26 with the departure of the inaugural train from Wiehle-Reston East Station in Fairfax County, Va., bound for Largo Town Center in Prince George’s County, Md. 

The new rail line is the largest expansion of Metrorail — and the first time a new color has been added to the Metro map — since the Green Line opened in 1991.

News release issued at 8:04 am, September 24, 2014. http://www.wmata.com/about_metro/news/PressReleaseDetail.cfm?ReleaseID=5785