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Preliminary Engineering Phase Nears Completion
The Crystal City Station Improvements project is scheduled to complete the Preliminary Engineering (PE) and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review phase of the project by spring 2021. The station improvements include an island platform with two entrances within the existing railroad right-of-way. Some realigning of existing tracks will be required to accommodate the proposed station. Final Design activities are expected to begin in summer 2021.
The project Technical Advisory Committee met three times throughout the PE/NEPA phase to provide input on the station design. VRE requests public comments or questions related to the various tasks completed in this phase via email at email@example.com by Friday April 9, 2021.
Tasks completed during this phase include:
Site Investigation: Topographic survey was completed of the station area within the railroad right-of-way as well as the private property where station entrances are proposed. Geotechnical investigations for this area have also been initiated. Findings from the site investigations were used to advance the station design.
Design of Station and Tracks: This task advanced the design of station and tracks to 30 percent. The project cost estimate was updated consistent with the 30 percent design level of detail.
Risk Analysis: A workshop was conducted in collaboration with JBG-Smith to assess risks to project cost and schedule, and to identify mitigation strategies. Findings were documented in a risk register that will be used to manage project risks as the design and construction advance.
Environmental Documentation: The Federal Transit Association (FTA) has determined that the probable class of action under NEPA is a Categorical Exclusion. An assessment of potential impacts to historic properties, in accordance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, has been completed. The Section 106 Assessment of Effect Report determined that the Crystal City Station Improvements Project will have no adverse effect on historic properties and the Virginia State Historic Preservation Office has concurred. The Section 106 Assessment of Effect Report can be accessed on VRE’s website. Click to view the report. FTA’s NEPA determination is anticipated in spring or summer of 2021.
Safety and Security Assessment: An initial assessment was conducted to identify the threats and vulnerabilities, as well as potential hazards related to the construction and operation of the relocated station and its vicinity. Mitigation measures have been incorporated into the PE design as appropriate. As Final Design is developed, further assessment will be done to ensure previously identified or new vulnerabilities or potential hazards are avoided or mitigated.
- More on Social Distancing
While we have relaxed capacity limits on platforms and railcars, social distancing may still be observed while ridership is low.
- What to Expect in the Coming Weeks
Throughout June, we'll be installing graphics to make social distancing on our trains and at our stations as simple as possible. Plus, we will make hand sanitizer available to our riders.
- Seasonal Schedule
The seasonal schedule will be effective the first service day after Memorial Day through the last service day prior to Labor Day. The schedule on our website will be updated prior to when service resumes after Memorial Day. Look for updated pocket schedules onboard the trains and posters at the stations.
- Coronavirus Health & Safety Guidance on VRE
VRE has returned to its full-service schedule. All 32 VRE trains are running, however, the Amtrak Step-Up program remains suspended.
- VRE to Use Everbridge Starting March 9th
VRE is transitioning to a new system to send Train Talk alerts. For many of you, no action is required to continue receiving Train Talks. However, if you originally subscribed for VRE alerts through another organization, you will need to opt-in to receive messages through Everbridge.