Jul 26, 2014

Beginning To Look a Lot Like a Metro

Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project gives a year-end report of progress on the Silver Line's Phase 1 - and says it is 60 percent finished.

Beginning To Look a Lot Like a Metro

Construction of Phase 1 of Metro's Silver Line from Tysons Corner to Reston is 60 percent complete, according to an update from Dulles Metrorail, which is bulding the rail.

The tracks are being laid along some sections of the 11.8-mile route. The Silver Line will allow passenger to travel on the same train from downtown Washington to McLean, Tysons Corner and Reston. The long-awaited and much- debated new line is on schedule to open in late 2013.

The Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project says the progress can be seen along the Silver Line from Tysons to Reston Wiehle Avenue. 

Signs of progress include:

  • Each one of the five rail stations is clearly visible.   
  • Bridges are in place to carry the rail line from the Dulles  Connector Road to the northwest side of Route 123, all along Route 123 and Route 7 in Tysons Corner. 
  • Track is being laid in many places.   
  • The bridges to carry rail from Route 7 to the Dulles Toll Road/ Dulles Airport Access Highway are being built.
  • Construction of the bridges across I-495 are almost  complete.
  •  Tunnels are being readied for track in Tysons.
  • A tunnel to provide access for trains into the West Falls Church Yard is well under way.
  • More details:

    Mining and concrete operations for the in-bound and out-bound tunnels connecting the Tysons Central 7 and Tysons Central 123 stations were completed  earlier this year and track will soon be put in place. These twin tunnels run beneath the highest natural point in Fairfax County at the intersection of Routes 7 and 123. Both tunnels are approximately 2,400 feet in length, just shy of a half-mile.

    During mining operations, this team successfully excavated more than 100,000 cubic yards of dirt which was carried by truck to Washington Dulles International Airport grounds.

    The most visible construction continues to be the aerial bridges (or guideways), which are being built using the large, horizontal cranes commonly called trusses. Those 366-ton pieces of specialized bridge-building equipment were awe-inspiring mainstays of Tysons Corner for most of the year.

    During the summer, three trusses were in commission simultaneously, a construction feat that is believed to have been accomplished nowhere else in North America.

    In Spring 2011, the truss building the sections of bridges between the west side of the Beltway and the Tysons Central 123 Station completed its work, was disassembled, and then reassembled in the median of Route 7 where it continues to work today.

     Bridge work is now taking place in the one-mile stretch of Route 7 between Route 123 and the Dulles Toll Road. The truss has moved through the Tysons Central 7 Station area (between SAIC and the Marshalls/Home Goods shopping center) and is now near the Tysons West Station (between Spring Hill and Tyco Road). It will continue its westward bridge building efforts toward the Tyco Road/Westwood Center Drive area in the coming weeks.

    There has been significant progress at all five stations--Tysons East, Tysons Central 123, Tysons Central 7, Tysons West and Wiehle Avenue this year. Tysons East and Wiehle Avenue construction is ahead of the other three. The first escalators are in place in the Wiehle Avenue Station where the steel canopy is very visible to drivers using the Dulles Airport Access Highway and the Dulles Toll Road.

    The project's first Traction Power Substation and Train Control Room were moved to sites along the Dulles Connector Road and bridges were built across Magarity Road, Pimmit Run, Difficult Run and the Washington and Old Dominion Trail.

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