Thank you for all the great questions. We always enjoy this hour of online interaction with our passengers and hope you continue to join us on another first Wednesday. If you didn't get your specific question answered, please email where we answer all inquiries within one business day.

Reminder that we will not operate VRE service on Monday, October 9 in observance of Columbus Day. Amtrak will operate a regular weekday schedule on 10/9 which means that VRE riders with a multi-day ticket AND a Step-Up ticket can ride on available Amtrak Cross Honor trains.

If you are looking for something to do this long weekend, Clifton Day is on Sunday, October 8th. The annual Clifton Day is a non-profit event, raising funds for a variety of local organizations. The festival includes arts and crafts, antiques, demonstrations, the Town Market, live music, children’s activities and lots of good food. VRE will operate trains from Manassas, Manassas Park, Burke Centre, and Rolling Road so you can save some gas getting there.

Safety reminder for the month - autumn is here and the leaves are falling. Please watch your step as leaves are slipping hazards.

See Tracks, Think Trains

Rich, Chris, et al.

  • Yolanda from Stafford, VA asks
    I hope I am doing this the right way. I have yet to see my question and comment posted. This is the first time participating, and I hope you guys are not pre-screening the questions/comments and deciding which ones you will post - if this is the case.....what's the use??????????

    VRE Response
    Yolanda, you are doing it right! If a question or comment is inappropriate, we do not reply to those questions. We do our best to answer all the questions, but sometimes we get multiple questions about the same topic and look for different questions to answer.

  • Wesley from Manassas asks
    When L'Enfant was reconfigured 3 cars now are forced to exit through a single door, and 5 minutes in delays every day are a result. How could this not be anticipated, and why does VRE continually have issues that seem to be unexplained until the last minute?

    VRE Response
    Wesley, the change was anticipated. We knew in the design of the storage track we would need to alter our operation.  The impact of the change may be less as the crews and passengers adjust to the new situation.  Still, in the end, the ability to add capacity by lengthening trains is certainly worth the change.

  • Ken from Fredericksburg, VA asks
    What is the status of repairs to the stairs leading down to King St. from the Track 2 platform at Alexandria station? The top step has been deteriorating for months and is a safety hazard. I reported this maintenance issue to VRE at the beginning of September.

    VRE Response
    We will have maintenance crews at the Alexandria (King St.) station starting next week to address the concrete repairs and other general maintenance.

  • Yolanda from Stafford, VA asks
    Your response to Steve about the questionnaire is very professional. I do not like the conductor joking about "this will get us more money". When he said that, I put the questionnaire on the top rack......

    VRE Response
    Thanks, Yolanda and we agree that the conductor's joke was inappropriate. The results of the survey will not get us more money, it determines how the operating subsidies from the member jurisdictions are divided up.

  • Dana from King George va asks
    How late does the train travel southbound to fredericksburg

    VRE Response
    The last train southbound departs Union Station at 6:40pm. Please find the Fredericksburg southbound schedules here.

  • Allison from Fredericksburg asks
    Just a sweet comment to the people reading and writing these responses. God bless yall, because some of these questions (and previous month's questions!) are venting sessions. Keep up the good work, I hope you're having a good day!

    VRE Response
    Thanks Allison! We enjoy the Online Forum each month and appreciate all feedback. 

  • Yolanda from Stafford, VA asks
    Is there any way you can establish a "no smoking at all on the platforms" policy? The distance between the smoking areas (cigarette butt container) at the Brooke and Crystal City platforms are not that great of a distance. As an Asthmatic, the cigarette smoke really bothers me. To most smokers credit at those two locations, they smoke at the entrance of the platforms away from everyone else, but there are those one or two smokers that stand next to the group of riders and smoke/vape before the trains arrive. It happened at the Brooke station this morning - so I thought I would at least ask the question.

    VRE Response
    Banning smoking on all of our platforms is a difficult task that would require the buy in of the ten jurisdictions we serve and do not see this happening anytime soon.


  • Lee from Fredericksburg, Virginia asks
    While the Quiet Car may be bane of VRE, its very important to those of us who use it every day. Can VRE staff and the announcements clarify the issues of noise from devices while in the Quiet Car? Some riders will loudly type away for an hour plus on their laptops, and other riders will leave their notification sounds on during their whole ride. Both the keyboard tapping and dinging from cell phones is very disturbing and not in the spirit of riding in a quiet car. Rider-to-Rider engagement on this can be and often is confrontational, like asking people to be quiet at the movie theatre. HELP!

    VRE Response
    Lee, we are happy to remind everyone of the courtesy rules for the quiet car.  We do ask folks to turn off the volume on devices, but not sure anything can be done about loud typing.  If there is an overt issue, please feel free to get the conductor involved.

  • People still cueing from Woodbridge asks
    I thought the new policy was anyone standing prior to a stop has to exit the train. Each morning on the next to the last car on the 300 Express people are still not exiting the train at Crystal City even though they are standing prior to this stop. They are staying in the way to better position themselves prior to the L'Enfant Station. Not to mention two of the offenders are very large men and its hard to get around them to exit at Crystal City.

    VRE Response
    Thank you for the feedback.  Chris was on 300 this morning and discussed queuing with several passengers at the north end of the train between Alexandria and L'Enfant, and followed with a discussion with the train crew.  Please let us know if this continues to be an issue by reporting these issues to

  • Davin from Woodbridge, VA asks
    Did you know that on Metro's new 7000 series railcars the automated announcements say "Connection is available to the Virginia Railway Express" when the train is approaching L'Enfant Plaza? Metro's train operators don't announce this on the older cars.

    VRE Response
    Yes, we were made aware recently.

  • Davin from Woodbridge, VA asks
    Will VRE add an additional car to Train #309? This train gets crowded on Tuesdays & Wednesdays.

    VRE Response
    Yes, the current plan calls for 309 to be expanded to 8 cars from 7.

  • Mark from Lorton, VA asks
    Your train stations have become trash dumps. I find it irresponsible of VRE to not actively ensure the stations are clean and the trash cans are not overflowing. For more than a year now the Lorton station has had trash strewn about the entry point to the station, including the parking lot. I know VRE likes to blame the Counties where their stations reside, but it's time you accept some responsibility and blame as well. If you're going to keep building stations and expect them to stay clean on their own you're wrong. Why don't you take some of the extra money you keep charging us every year and assist with keeping the stations clean? I'm sure you'll redirect my issue to the County though.....

    VRE Response
    Mark, thank you for your observations. We definitely work to clean the platforms and empty out the trashcans on a regular basis. As the parking lots are owned by the jurisdictions, we partner with them to address any issues that we may see. Once the Lorton Station projects are completed, you should see the appearance improve.

  • Davin from Woodbridge, VA asks
    I don't know why people who get off at L'Enfant Plaza like to stand up while the train is still at Crystal City. That is too early to stand up. It blocks the way if people are walking through and you won't get to your destination any sooner. I prefer we wait until the train crosses the bridge into DC.

    VRE Response
    We agree Davin.

  • David from Woodbridge, VA asks
    Will VRE's schedule change when they start using the storage tracks at L'Enfant Plaza?

    VRE Response
    Our goal is to be able to make the moves in and out of the storage tracks without affecting the existing schedule.


  • Jo from Manassas, VA asks
    *** Can VRE add more cars to Manassas Line #331? *** It is over crowded from Crystal City to Rolling Rd everyday that so many of us have to stand all the way between these 2 stops.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the question Jo.  Since 331 is already an 8 car train, we will not be adding any cars.  We will, however, be lengthening 327 to 8 cars. 


  • Mahendra Patel from Fredericksburg, VA asks
    I have a ten trip tickets. One of them is never used but has expired. Can I get it replaced? Secondly, I have few ten trips tickets with few rides left unused but have expired. Can I get the replacement for it? Thank you.

    VRE Response
    Sorry Mahendra, unused tickets expire one year from the date of purchase.

  • Young Feller from Spotsylvania asks
    Do yall have tractor parking down at the Spotsylvania lot?

    VRE Response
    We have seen a few John Deere's down there.  As long as they fit in between the lines. :)

  • Schyzycs from Manassas asks
    1. Why can't you dim the lights on the early morning trains? 2. Why do you still allow people to smoke on the L'Enfant platform?

    VRE Response
    1) Current lighting levels are set for safety purposes; and 2) Smoking is permitted on the north 100 ft. of all our platforms.


  • Gwen from Manassas asks
    Can you please extend the mobile monthly ticket to cover the grace day at the beginning of the next month? Each month it expires on the last day of the month, unless that is a Friday or Saturday, then it will extend until Sunday. But it should go until the first of the month or the Monday after. The mobile ticket disappears after it expires and you have no way to show a ticket on the grace day from the previous month.

    VRE Response
    We're working on this one Gwen.  The positive side of this is it is on VRE Mobile.  The grace period was originally implemented because so many monthly passengers were receiving their tickets by mail and sometimes they did not receive them on time.  That problem goes away with VRE Mobile because you can purchase your monthly anytime after the 23rd of the previous month, and it will already be on your phone on the 1st for use.  SmartBenefit funds are made available at 12:01 am on the 1st, so if you use benefit dollars, you still have ample opportunity to make the purchase before your morning train.


  • Joe from Woodbridge, VA asks
    Is there a solution planned for the delays in disembarking at L'Enfant Station due to the new CSX Signal? Seems like VRE is taking on a "just get used to the new normal" approach, but it's added extra time to the morning commute.

    VRE Response
    Joe, the signal placement was necessary to allow us to access the storage tracks at L'Enfant.  In turn, the storage tracks give us the ability to lengthen trains with the new cars we are receiving this year.  How we operate as a result of the signal placement will not change.  It may ultimately add a minute to the station stop at L'Enfant since one fewer car is on the platform, but the tradeoff of adding capacity to the most crowded trains is worth the extra time.


  • Andrew from Manassas Park, VA asks
    Is there a limit to the number of tickets that can be sold per train or per day? Some trains are quite crowded and eventually there will not be enough physical space for everyone that desires to ride the VRE. Furthermore, what actions are being taken to address this concern?

    VRE Response
    Good questions Andrew.  We do not sell tickets by specific train because commuters need the flexibility to alter their schedule based on work requirements.  The conductors always have the option to deny boarding if the crowding becomes a safety issue.  We do have new cars arriving shortly which will give us the opportunity to lengthen the trains which currently see the most crowding.  This should address the issue over the next few months.


  • Bill from Burke asks
    Could you provide a little more insight into how this morning's survey is used? BTW there has yet to be any enforcement at all, of the standing equals detraining policy,on train 331. It's a large problem, at least in the 3rd car from the south end of the train.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the question and feedback Bill.  We call today's survey the Master Agreement Survey because it is mandated in the Master Agreement which formed VRE.  The primary purpose is to see travel patterns at the different stations which helps us properly spread the VRE member jurisdictional operating subsidy based on ridership.  Other data received, as mentioned in an earlier question, is used for service planning purposes.

  • Cathy from Woodbridge, VA asks
    Why do I sometimes see the train conductors carrying children that aren't their own children? There is usually someone supervising the conductors, dressed in black when I see this

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the question Cathy.  We cannot think of a reason for a conductor to be carrying a child.  If you would please forward specific train/conductor information to us at, we'll address this.



  • Tom S. from Leeland asks
    I have walked through the quiet car a couple of times when I can't find a seat elsewhere on the train. It seems that in the quiet car, some passengers have blankets and pillows and are lay to sleep across two seats. It seems to me that we could reduce the capacity of the quiet car to a quiet half car, and open up more seats on the northern half to other fare paying passengers on the train that cannot stay that quiet for that long.

    VRE Response
    No one should be sleeping across two seats. So this is really more of a courtesy, and enforcement issue to be addressed by the conductors.  The quiet car is a nice amenity for those who prefer to travel in a more peaceful environment, but it should not be misconstrued as a license to take up multiple seats for a one hour nap.  The same can be said for passengers who like to sleep in the other cars as well.  We have asked the conductors to be more vigilant in addressing courtesy issues like this, so passengers are not left to handle it themselves.


  • Amy from Alexandria asks
    I'm a relatively new rider and I use the mobile app a lot but I've discovered that the Train Status info is often wrong. I was waiting for a Fredericksburg line train at Franconia-Springfield earlier this week and was about to get on the train while the Train Status said it was still six minutes away. If I'd gone by the app I would have missed the train. Any plans to fix this glitch? Thanks!

    VRE Response
    Great question Amy.  The company which provides the predictive analytics for the mobile app is still refining their model.  The accuracy should improve over time.  In the meantime, you can click on the option and select "Train Status" to see the location of the trains, as reported by the onboard GPS, on a VRE system map overlay.  


  • Carl from Arlington, VA asks
    When will an option be selected for the Crystal City VRE station. I strongly support option #3. I would recommend you rerun your analysis to include an airport connector. Then most VRE riders would then go to the DCA metro station to transfer.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the feedback Carl. We will add your recommendation to the other public comments we have received.

  • Frustrated Handicap Parker from Leeland Rd Station asks
    Good afternoon and overall thanks for a job well done! Could Stafford Police and whoever else from VRE that needs to be notified please be, that there are three (3) habitual (everyday) illegal handicap parkers at Leeland Rd Station. I believe all 3 have temporary handicap placards and park in the 1st two rows (one actually has 3 placards she puts out, one hanging from the mirror, one on the dash or seat and the 3rd shut between the door window and the frame of the car as to see it from the windshield. One parks in the motorcycle parking spaces, one on the hash marked area at the end of row 2 and the third usually on the hash marked area in between two handicapped spaces in row 2. As someone who also has a handicap placard (permanent) and also arrives for the later trains after all the handicap spaces are taken these 3 also need to park in the back of the lot like I do! Over the last several months I have only seen these 3 receive 1 warning/ticket. True I am not my brother's keeper but I can still get aggravated and frustrated when I see something day after day and nothing is being done to rectify the situation. Thank you and let's have a safe month!

    VRE Response
    Thank you for the feedback.  We'll share your comments with Stafford County.


  • Phil from Burke asks
    Just curious why Amtrak (and VRE when Amtrak was the operator) conductors leave a door open and watch the platform when departing stations, and Keolis does not.

    VRE Response
    We can't speak for Amtrak, but VRE does not want the train to move until all doors are closed.  This eliminates the potential for someone to try to board a moving train through an open door.


  • Art from Broad Run asks
    Just curious why 327 makes a 3-5 minute stop at Manassas every day now and has for 1-2 months. Used to be more of a run-and-gun quick stop just like the other stops on the route. Thanks.

    VRE Response
    Thanks Art.  Recently we have experienced multiple passengers needing the assistance of the car-borne lift at the Manassas Station.

  • Paul from Bristow, VA asks
    Is the Broad Run station relocation to Godwin Dr. off the table? It appears the only current plans are to expand the current location.

    VRE Response
    VRE staff are currently working on plans to expand at the Broad Run station location. This was the preferred alternative selected by the VRE operations board.

  • Stanley from Woodbridge, VA asks
    The new "Standing means De-Training" rule is NOT working. This does not really fix anything. One huge issue are the people that get up and start to queue in the aisle at the current stop, for the next stop even before all the people that need to get off at this current stop have the opportunity to do so. The conductors are not aware, because they are the first ones to step off the train on to the platform and do not observe this issue. The violators that do this are very rude about it. You guys will never fix or correct these issues, because you go about handling them in the incorrect way. Signed frustrated passenger Stanley

    VRE Response
    Thanks Stanley. We are always open to suggestions on better ways to handle the issue.  Our goal is to make sure anyone who wants to alight at the current station may do so without having to push past others, or step over bags...etc.  Some of the constraints we work within are the limited number of conductors onboard the train, and their need to perform specific functions, like opening the doors (which means they are the first ones off the train). 

  • Jason from Burke, VA asks
    Why was the Long Bridge meeting postponed? What is the status of the L'Enfant Station improvements (island platform)?

    VRE Response
    The Long Bridge meeting was delayed to allow time for additional inter-agency coordination.

  • robert from Dumfries asks
    What's up with the escalators at Union Station? There has been one out of service on each of the platforms serving 23/34 track and 25/26 track. How long does Amtrak expect them to be out of service? It doesn't even appear any work is being done. Really inconvenient.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the question Robert.  The escalator at 25/26 was being worked on this morning when we were at Union Station, so we know progress is being made.  The plans for the escalator work state it should be finished in one year. We will also share the information through Train Talk.


  • Cathy from Woodbridge, VA asks
    On the train status section of the webpage and app, it sometimes says STOP signal when there is a delay. What does this actually mean? Who is sending this signal and why?

    VRE Response
    When the train receives a Stop signal, it means they have come upon a section or block of track which may currently be occupied by another train.  Before the train may enter the block, the dispatcher will need give them a clear signal to proceed.  It is similar to coming upon a red light while driving a car, and waiting for the green light before proceeding.


  • Fredericksburg from Fredericksburg asks
    Hi there! When will be results of the passenger survey conducted earlier this year (not today's one) available? Thank you

    VRE Response
    We will provide the results to our Operations Board on October 20th and will make the results available online that same day.

  • Robert from Woodbridge, VA (Rippon station) asks
    Are there plans to increase the length of the Rippon platform and/or build a platform for track #3?

    VRE Response
    Yes, we are currently in the preliminary engineering/design phase of a project to construct a 2nd platform and lengthen the existing platform at the Rippon Station. We will continue to push out updates on this project, and others, as projected timelines for completion become clearer.

  • L from Fredericksburg from Fredericksburg asks
    Can you please remind everyone that they should not sit in the handicap seats until the handicap that need the seats are on the train? One morning I had to get conductor to move someone because they would not move. Customers that are handicap does not ask to be handicap and other customers should accommodate the handicap. I am sure they would not like it if we sit in the regular sits and took up a seat with our equipment.

    VRE Response
    Will do, L.  We'll put a reminder in the next issue of RIDE and reiterate the point through our other forms of communication.  The conductors are always there to assist.

  • Steve from Crystal City, VA asks
    So, I was riding this morning, and was given a questionnaire seeking my home address, cross street to my house, and all kinds of personal information relating to how I get to the VRE, etc. Why? I don't give out this information as a matter of principle, it is no company's need to know unless they are delivering something to my house. The reason given for the questions on the train was that it was for local funding. Given the location of most rider's place of employment, many work in sensitive areas and are practiced in not providing this kind of information...So, I think you should find out some other way to get the information you need. Perhaps just count the number of riders at each stop, as I noticed you doing by a guy wearing a Ten/Ten jacket and a counter. The rest is non of your business.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the input Steve.  The survey is optional, so if you are not comfortable sharing the information, simply decline.  The information from this survey is not only used to determine each VRE member jurisdiction's share of the operating subsidy to support VRE, but home and work data assist in service planning efforts. For those not comfortable sharing specific street addresses, we include the option for intersection information.

  • Doug from Broad Run asks
    When I board the train in Crystal City and then again in Alexandria, the conductors make announcements designed to make sure I am on the right train. Sadly, when I am on a Manassas train, they say the word Manassas once and the word Fredericksburg 3 to 5 times. "This is a Manassas line train, not a Fredcericksburg line train, this train does not go to Fredericksburg, if you want to go to Fredericksburg, get off here." What comes through to my subconscious is the repetition of the word Fredericksburg, which is exactly what I should not be thinking. Please look into stressing the name of the train we are on and not the other one.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the suggestion Doug, we'll share this with the train crews.

  • Mark from Stafford, VA asks
    Are there plans to add additional cars to the express train?

    VRE Response
    Yes.  We will be receiving 9 new cars over the next couple of months.  Two of those cars will be used to improve our spare ratio and the other 7 will be used to lengthen existing trains.  Manassas Line 327 will receive the first additional car, as it currently faces the most crowding issues.  Fredericksburg Line 300 will be lengthened from the current 7 cars to 8.  Our ultimate goal will be to have all of our trains 8 cars.


  • Robin from Broad Run asks
    HOW did Fredericksburg #300 get in front of our Manassas line train? Were they running fast?

    VRE Response
    No Robin, 300 was on time.  Unfortunately, due to some other congestion on the railroad, 300 was pre-aligned to cross down to Track 3 south of Alexandria instead of their normal crossover north of Alexandria. 


  • david from manassas asks
    With the shift tomorrow of the CSXT dispatchers back to Jacksonville, FL from Baltimore, do you foresee any minor delays as the result. Prior to their move to Baltimore 8 years ago, the VRE suffered from dispatchers that did not know the nuances of the Fredericksburg line How have you insured this problematic lack of intimate knowledge will not return?

    VRE Response
    Great question David,

    While we may see different dispatchers working the VRE service, it currently appears that most of the current dispatchers will be working the territory. Keolis Transportation Managers may plan a trip to Jacksonville where they can sit with staff to discuss territory specific issues. We did this recently with Norfolk Southern when they moved dispatching responsibility to Harrisburg, PA from Greenville, SC and it seems to have been very helpful.

  • Mahendra Patel from Fredericksburg, VA asks
    I have been trying to buy the OCT monthly ticket for the last two days at the Seven Eleven store near Leeland station where my smartcard has been registered. The machine is not working and hence I had to buy today's round trip tickets. What do you do when the machine is not functional? The Clark keeps telling me they will call VRE but doesn't seem like they have done anything to resolve the issue.

    VRE Response
    The issue with the machine at the vendor location was fixed at 10:15 am this morning, so purchases may now be made there.  We apologize for the inconvenience.


Thank you for joining us for our monthly online forum. Every first Wednesday of the month, we as senior VRE Operations management - Rich Dalton, Deputy CEO & Chief Operating Officer, and Chris Henry, Director of Rail Operations - answer your questions in real time. We also have management from CSX, Keolis and Amtrak with us, so feel free to direct any questions towards them.

We appreciate all those who filled out our Master Agreement survey this morning. This survey determines how many riders come from each jurisdiction and how much each member jurisdiction contributes to the VRE system. We also use the data for service planning purposes.

Now on to the questions!