So, to recap…
1) Metro service this year is going to get worse because of repairs.
2) Metro service may get more expensive. A lot more expensive for people who use paper fare cards. But the Post notes that Metro says that the increased revenue isn’t going to toward repairs, it’s just covering a budget shortfall to keep trains and buses running (sort of) on time.
3) Now Metro says they’re going to hire 1,000 more workers (and no, they don’t know how much that will cost) to perform repairs and run the new Silver line.
Yes, fare increases are inevitable and should be expected. And perhaps even at higher rates than Metro is proposing. As commenter rsn writes: “[…]if it keeps at its current rate, the smarttrip fare increase won’t even keep up with inflation. Given the fact that most of WMATA’s costs probably run higher than inflation (fuel, raw materials, wages, retirement and other benefits for employees), it seems to me that metro should consider higher fare increases just so they can get ahead of issue. Expecting fares to remain the same while the cost of doing business rises is counter intuitive.”
But the communication failures—-and subsequent perceptions that Metro is wasting money—-may be riling folks up even more than fare increases do.
Photo by Mike Hicks