Posts Tagged ‘forecasts’

Proposed 2040 Metrorail Network

December 5th, 2013 81 comments

Step right up and check out the proposed 2040 core Metrorail configuration with new Blue and Yellow Lines and a third line in Virginia!

Proposed 2040 Metrorail Core Configuration

Proposed 2040 Metrorail Core Configuration

Proposed 2040 Metrorail Network

Proposed 2040 Metrorail Network

What does this network do? The proposed rail network shown above is expected to reduce future crowding on Metrorail, provide enough capacity for future development, and expand the reach of transit in the region, especially to regional activity centers.

Why are we proposing it? This rail network is part of the 2040 Regional Transit System Plan (RTSP). Its purpose is to develop the rail and surface transit network for 2040 that meets the needs of the growing Washington DC region.

What else have we considered? About a month ago, we posted about some of the possible long-range changes to the Metrorail core that we are considering as part of the RTSP. We analyzed four different core configurations, gathered your comments, and the final configuration for the core is shown above. As many of you commented, it is a combination of two of the scenarios (Scenarios B and C).

Next Steps: The next and final step for the RTSP is to use this configuration, along with the high capacity surface corridors, to conduct a final round of analysis. The output will provide us with information on ridership, mode share, levels of crowding, transfers, etc. and ultimately a final network for 2040.

Let us know what you think!

A few extra notes:

(1) The Metrorail network shown in this post will be layered with an extensive high capacity surface transit network to expand transit and meet the needs of employment and population growth in the region.

(2) For the plan to have validity and acceptability across the region and within the federal planning process, it is based on the region’s adopted cooperative land use forecast for 2040. We used the Aspirations Land Use scenario to stress test the core of the system, but ultimately the plan needs to start with the region’s adopted land use. As follow on work to this plan, we will be testing different land uses to see what else we can learn to improve long-range plans.

(3) All of the lines shown, as well as all of the high capacity surface transit corridors, will need corridor studies, alternatives analyses, and full engineering studies. This cannot be done at a regional level, but would need to happen on a project by project, line by line level. So, while we are showing a new Blue Line on M Street, it very well could be on N or P Streets.

RTSP Evaluating and Prioritizing Corridors for High Capacity Transit: Dispatch from TAG Meeting #10

October 4th, 2013 1 comment

This is the second post in a two-part series based Logo_WMATA_RTSP_001 blackon content from the tenth meeting with the Regional Transit System Plan (RTSP) Technical Advisory Group (TAG) that was held in July. The first post focused on our analysis of new Metrorail lines in the core and Virginia. This post is about our approach to identify regionally significant corridors for high capacity transit. 

By 2040, multiple regionally significant travel corridors will need high capacity, high frequency transit to connect people and jobs outside of the core.

As part of the RTSP, we will identify regionally significant corridors where transit priority infrastructure is needed to provide high capacity transit. At the TAG meeting, Metro Planning staff presented a methodology to identify, evaluate, and prioritize these regionally significant corridors. The methodology has evolved since the July meeting and is described below. The actual evaluation and prioritization is still in process.

WMATA RTSP II Corridors Segments 082813

Corridors identified for evaluation for high capacity transit.

 

Since the TAG meeting, we have also conducted one-on-one meetings with each jurisdiction and agency in the RTSP study area to review and gather feedback on the full set of corridors that will be evaluated. Approximately 70 corridors have been identified from:

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RTSP Analyzing New Metrorail Lines in the Core and Virginia: Dispatch from TAG Meeting #10

October 3rd, 2013 39 comments

This is the first post in a two-part series based Logo_WMATA_RTSP_001 blackon content from the tenth meeting with the Regional Transit System Plan (RTSP) Technical Advisory Group (TAG) that was held in July. This post will focus on our analysis of Metrorail capacity and crowding, while the second post will focus on identifying and prioritizing regionally significant surface transit corridors.

By 2040, ridership and crowding levels on Metrorail indicate the need for a new Blue Line and new Yellow line in the system’s core and a third line in Virginia.

At the time of our last post, we had run an initial round of four scenarios that sought to resolve regional mobility issues. We gathered a lot of information from the results, but realized that we needed to run a second round of scenarios focused almost entirely on Metrorail. Using MWCOG’s Cooperative Forecast Round 8.1 land use, which has been adopted by the region, and MWCOG’s Aspirations land use, which shifts more jobs and households into the regional activity centers, the maps below clearly demonstrate crowded conditions in 2040. The Base Network shown in these maps includes 100 percent eight-car trains and all the CLRP projects. Crowded conditions exist on the Orange Line west of Rosslyn, on the Yellow and Green Lines south of L’Enfant Plaza, and on the Silver Line west of Tysons. Because the results indicated that Metro would be severely crowded EVEN if we run the longest possible trains (eight-car trains), we wanted to explore other long-term solutions.

WMATA-RTSP-II-Baseline-No-Aspirations-Land-Use-Loads-071513-wLEGEND

Crowding on Metrorail by 2040, even with the longest possible (eight-car) trains. Base Network AM Peak, Round 8.1 Cooperative Forecast

WMATA-RTSP-II-Baseline-Aspirations-Land-Use-Loads-071513-wLEGEND

Crowding on Metrorail in 2040 even with the longest possible (eight-car) trains, Base Network AM Peak, Aspirations Land Use

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Improving Quality of Life

July 16th, 2013 No comments

Metro also delivers quality-of-life benefits to individuals by reducing the costs of travel and minimizing environmental impacts. Without transit:

  • Congestion at peak times would increase 25 percent, costing over $1.0 billion annually in wasted time.
  • Households would spend an additional $500 million/year in auto expenditures, including an additional 41 million gallons of fuel annually.
  • Air quality would worsen because of an additional 260 tons of volatile organic compounds, 22 tons of particulate matter and 500,000 tons of CO2 equivalent in the air, the equivalent of 9 billion party balloons. Emissions Avoided because of Metro

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Metro – A Place for Business

June 25th, 2013 3 comments

Metro is critical to the eGISBase_PopEmpByCounty-Apr-2013-v5_Small-2-01prosperity of the region and has a positive effect on business activity. Within one half-mile of rail stations and bus stops there are two million jobs, which account for 54 percent of all jobs in the region. The figure to the right shows how future employment will be focused in the Metrorail service areas of the central jurisdictions and the inner suburbs.

The Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) added 275,000 households and 295,000 jobs between 2004 and 2010.  Of that growth, 6.4 percent of new households and 13.8 percent of new jobs located within one-quarter mile of urban Metro stations and one-half mile of suburban ones. The land area around these Metro stations comprises only 1.2 percent of the MSA land area, so Metro-adjacent locations are capturing far more than an average share of growth. When asked, 83 percent of business leaders surveyed by Metro in March, 2013 noted the importance of Metro to their future success. Employers have chosen Metro station areas as highly desirable places to locate jobs and attract employees. Seventy-seven percent of them said the proximity of a Metrorail station was important to where they decided to locate their businesses.

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Announcing 40 Days of Momentum!

June 13th, 2013 2 comments

Momentum CoverYou’ve been diligently telling us what you think our priorities should be and we’ve listened. We’ve been hard at work putting the final touches on Momentum: The Next Generation of Metro and Metro’s Board endorsed the plan today.

Starting Monday, over the following 40 weekdays, we’ll be rolling out the most interesting parts of the plan in daily posts here on PlanItMetro.

Monday Posts: Preparing for Tomorrow’s Region Today

Tuesday Posts: Metro’s Importance to the Region

Wednesday Posts: Metro’s Recent Accomplishments and Public Engagement

Thursday Posts: Strategies and Priority Actions to Make this Vision a Reality

Friday Posts: Metro 2025 – Seven Priority Capital Initiatives

If you want to read and download either the full Momentum plan or the Executive Summary, go right ahead. But if you want to stop back for a daily dose of Momentum, don’t be shy. If you notice something that strikes your fancy, leave us a comment.

Regional support is important to making Momentum a reality! A number of regional stakeholders have already endorsed Momentum. Please sign on and add your name to endorse Momentum and send the message that public transit is vital to the National Capital Region.

 

 

 

L’Enfant Plaza Station Capacity Improvements Study

December 6th, 2012 No comments

The L’Enfant Plaza Station is one of busiest stations in the Metrorail system and handles thousands of passenger transfers on four of the five Metrorail lines.  It ranks third among all stations in absolute ridership growth over the last five years.

Earlier this year, Metro initiated a station capacity improvements study, similar to previous studies that evaluated the feasibility of station access and capacity improvements and station circulation enhancements at Gallery Pl-Chinatown and Union Stations.  The purpose of this study is to identify and address the physical and operational internal capacity constraints of L’Enfant Plaza Station.  Both short-term and long-term capacity enhancement solutions will be sought with operational improvements and constructability in mind.

Current and Future “Hot-Spots” at L’Enfant Plaza Station Platforms during the AM Peak

In order to assess the current and future conditions within L’Enfant station, Metro has used a pedestrian simulation tool that enables the quantification of crowded conditions.  The maps included here show existing and future condition profiles of the upper and lower level platforms within the station.  Future conditions were estimated using MWCOG/TPB travel demand model, Metrorail ridership growth forecasts and Metro origin-destination data sources.  Cumulative mean density maps help to identify “hot-spots” within the station – areas where high levels of crowding are sustained.

Analysis of current pedestrian activity during the AM peak 15-minute interval showed that the station currently operates at safe levels on both platforms in the morning peak hour, and identified a large volume of transfers between the northbound upper platform where Green and Yellow lines run and the westbound lower platform where Orange and Blue lines operate.   By year 2030, however, these conditions are expected to worsen with growth of transfers.  The levels of crowding in the transfer areas leading to the lower platform intensify due to increased passenger flows and space restrictions adjacent to escalators.  Also, high passenger densities are shown to occur at the westbound Orange and Blue platform during the morning rush hours.

A reversed pattern of crowding is shown between the eastbound lower platform and the southbound upper platform for the returning passengers during the PM peak 15-minute interval.  As expected, conditions worsen with increased passenger flows and transfer activity forecast for 2030 on the southbound upper platform.

Current and Future “Hot-Spots” at L’Enfant Plaza Station Platforms during the PM Peak

Given the existing and future “no-build” scenarios presented here, Metro is currently working to develop short and long-term design alternatives for detailed evaluation.  Stay posted for additional simulation and conceptual design results as they become available.

TAG Meeting #9: RTSP Phase II: Review of Round 1 Scenario Results

November 2nd, 2012 4 comments

In September, we presented to the TAG the results of the first round of scenarios modeled in the second phase of the RTSP study.  Scenarios are defined by a collection of strategies or projects identified in the initial phase of the RTSP.  The four scenarios tested focused on maximizing the existing infrastructure, expanding surface transit, expanding transit in the core, and expanding transit system wide.  The performance of each scenario was evaluated against a set of measures to determine the relative effectiveness of each compared to the baseline scenario, defined by the regional list of projects in the currently adopted Constrained Long Range Plan, and MWCOG Cooperative Forecasts Round 8.0 land use.

Phase II Process Overview: Click to Enlarge

Regional measures such as total transit trips, mode share, vehicle miles traveled, households and jobs within a half-mile of transit, travel time savings, and transit congestion were evaluated to not only determine how well the scenarios performed against each other over the baseline, but to assess how well each satisfied the goals and objectives of the RTSP.  In addition to these broad-based regional measures, the first round of scenario modeling focused on how well each scenario addressed the need to expand capacity within the system core.  Peak period Metrorail link capacity and transfer activity at key core stations were measured against the baseline scenario to determine if the potential build scenarios could provide sufficient capacity to serve future demand, and how well such added capacity could be utilized.

For more information on scenario descriptions, measured results, and key findings download meeting materials: TAG 9 Presentation of Results

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Categories: TAG Tags: , , ,

TAG Meeting #8: Regional Transit System Plan Phase I Review

March 12th, 2012 2 comments

Metro is developing the Regional Transit System Plan (RTSP), a vision of a sustainable, integrated, multimodal, regional transit network for 2040.  Metro staff have recently completed the first phase, and presented a summary to the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) in January.  Phase II is underway, and the proposed approach and initial scenarios to evaluate were also presented to the TAG.

During the initial phase, Metro staff assessed future growth trends and travel-demand patterns throughout the region for the forecast year 2040.  Regional growth, reported by MWCOG Cooperative Forecasts Round 7.2a, shows significant population, household, and employment growth over the next several decades.  This growth has a direct impact on travel patterns around the region.  As a part of Phase I work, Metro staff identified the implications this has for transit.

Forecasts show that with the implementation of the projects included in the 2009 financially constrained long-range plan (CLRP) regional transit trips will grow by 30% by 2040.  Although the regional program of projects in the CLRP results in a transit mode share remaining at only 4% of total person trips, the region will see more than 350,000 new weekday transit trips.  Given the anticipated growth and dispersion of travel, the RTSP focuses on the following long-range issues:

  • Increasing the capacity of the system to serve the region’s employment core;
  • Improving multimodal access to high quality transit;
  • Improving the efficiency and interoperability of the region’s surface transit;
  • Improving connections to Regional Activity Centers;

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Categories: RTSP, TAG Tags: , ,

Changing Outlook on Regional Growth Trends

May 19th, 2011 1 comment

The Regional Transit System Plan (RTSP) is intended to update the currently adopted Transit System Expansion Plan (TSEP) that was completed in 1999.  In its implementation, the RTSP looks beyond the planning horizon of the TSEP by an additional fifteen years and incorporates updated travel demand, population and employment forecasts for the region.  The following discussion will look at how much ridership growth has occurred over the ten-year period between 1999 and 2009, and will look at changes in the regional growth projections out to 2040 that will shape future demand for transit services.

Changes in Ridership

Figure 1. Change in ridership. Source: NTD

As envisioned in the adopted plan, transit ridership has grown since 1999, and is on the way toward the TSEP goal of doubling ridership by 2025.  Annual transit passenger trips throughout the region have increased by about 30% in the first 10 years of the 25 year planning horizon.  However, this growth in ridership has not been consistent across the region:  close inspection of these data shows that ridership growth is happening at a faster rate on local feeder bus, express bus, and commuter rail services than for regional Metrorail and Metrobus services, although Metro accounts for the majority of the growth in absolute terms.    The growth in ridership on local and commuter transit services highlights the need to create a transit plan that looks beyond the services provided only by Metro and to focus on the region at large.

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