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Flat rates and free bus-rail transfers | Metro budget heading to the full board for approval

$2 weekend rail fares to continue with Metro's new budget

WASHINGTON D.C., DC — Riding the Metro during certain times of the day will permanently come with a flat rate. On Thursday the Metro Board of Directors Finance and Capital Committee held a meeting where they passed a new budget.

It still has to be voted on by the entire board on March 24, 2022.

In a lengthy meeting discussing the budget for Metro, leaders said ridership is still down in comparison to pre-pandemic levels, causing a drop in the revenue typically generated from ridership.

Metro said they surveyed riders and found the bulk of passengers want to see certain fares implemented during the pandemic remain the same.

“I’m a grad student at George Washington, so I’m on here like every day,” Lauren O'Connor said. 

The budget will allow late night and weekend fares to be a flat rate of $2. 

“It just can be so expensive to Uber or get anywhere, so the metro is just a much cheaper option if you want to get anywhere in the city,” O'Connor said. 

Free bus-rail transfers will also continue.

“D.C. is such a touristy area, and I think that for a lot of people, this a great opportunity to use public transport versus renting a car which is good for the environment as well,” Anna said. 

RELATED: Metro's Yellow Line will partially shut down for around 8 months to undergo repairs

Meanwhile, work continues on the Silver Line. Metro said they’ve already hired 400 new employees and hope to onboard 30 more by the end of the month. As of now, there’s no clear date on when the construction will be completed.

The proposal to give riders a $5 bonus for adding $25 to a SmarTrip Card was taken out because leaders don’t think it will increase ridership and said it would cost metro some $7M.

Another change, Metro also voted to not reappoint their current Inspector General, Geoffery Cherrington and appointed Rene Febles as Acting Inspector General. He will assume that role starting mid-April.

RELATED: DOJ: WMATA employee arrested for involvement in Capitol riots

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