Thanks again for a great hour of questions and comments.

As a reminder, we will be kicking off our Meet the Management (MTM) season next week at Union Station.  We enjoy the monthly Online Forum, but Meet the Management gives us the chance to see everyone, and answer questions face to face.  It is also our opportunity to thank the riders personally for your patronage and support of our service.  For more information, and the full schedule, please visit:

If we don’t see you out there at MTM, we’ll see you back here next month.

Rich, Chris, …et al.

  • Brian from Manassas asks
    IS VRE on track to meet PTC requirements by Dec 2018?

    VRE Response
    VRE anticipates having PTC implemented by December 2018.

  • Allen from Spotsylvania asks
    The new speed bump at the entrance has really slowed down riders exiting the parking lot at Spotsy. People crawling over the bump backs up the entire lot more than it should. Can't a 3 way stop sign just be placed there instead?

    VRE Response
    As mentioned earlier, the speed bumps are supposed to slow vehicles down.  We will continue to look for a different option which will be similarly effective.

  • Georgie from Frozen in Broad Run asks
    Why oh why, is the train always freezing? I know the usual reply you always give is that the temperature is set between 68-72 degrees. That's rubbish. I've been frozen since you guys made the switch to the newer trains- so for about 4 years now.

    VRE Response
    Sorry Georgie, as we've said before if there is a specific car you would like us to check, please send the information to and we'll check it out.

  • Sissy from Quiet in Haymarket asks
    Please mark the quiet car doors on the side facing the vestibule so people who enter know it is the quiet car. The signs on the inside of the car are sort of silly since we who ride them know we are on them. The goal is to let people know entering the car it is quiet. There have been several instances of visitors who board at Union who don't know.

    VRE Response
    We'll look at it Sissy, but there will always be passengers who board at the Quiet Car and may need to be directed to a regular car once onboard.

  • Dave from Fredericksburg asks
    Would you care to try to explain Monday's 313 fiasco with next to no announcements, get off the train and catch the bus/get back on the train, being passed by 315, and the total lack of coordination exhibited by VRE staff?

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the question Dave.  Prince William County Police initially released VRE Train 311 to advance only as far as the platform at Woodbridge.  We had the buses on standby if needed, but as the train was pulling up, both tracks and the equipment were released to continue south.  The crew members onboard 311 were still under the impression we were going to utilize the buses and had announced for everyone to alight at Woodbridge.  In an effort to get everyone home as quickly as possible, we opted to load everyone back on the train to continue south instead of utilizing the buses.  In the meantime, VRE Train 313, which had been holding at Lorton was given the signal to advance.  This was simply the result of a changing plan in a fluid incident.  We apologize for the inconvenience.

  • Greg K from Burke, VA asks
    I am wondering if VRE will add more schedules as I see now more and more people are unable to have a seat (crowd). Many families live further out city limit and VRE is the ONLY favorite commuter train they chose. Thank you.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the question Greg.  We do have plans to add capacity by lengthening trains.

  • Dave from Woodbridge asks
    Is the standing means detraining policy still in effect? If so on the 300 Express each morning riders start lining up for the Crystal City and L'Enfant stop prior to the Alexandria stop (next to last car - both sides). It has made it hard for some of the people to detrain at Alexandria.

    VRE Response
    Still in effect Dave, and always will be.  We simply want passengers to be able to detrain at their destination station without having to climb over and around people and bags.  We'll ask the conductors to pay special attention to the cars where there is an issue.

  • Sam K from Spotsy asks
    All VRE Riders: The VRE Staff and their KEOLIS operators are trying to provide a good service. You all need to understand the circumstances and conditions put on VRE and the things they can and can't do that are beyond their control. The VRE Management rides the train that you all ride so they can identify any operational, management, technical and Information technology related issues so they can address and resolve. we just need the CSX to help out along with traffic management from FL. GREAT Job to the VRE Staff and their Keoplis Operator. From the Operational aspects to IT to Equipment.....GOOD Job and GOD Bless.

    VRE Response
    Thank you Sir, we appreciate your comments and concerns.

  • Sam from Spotsy asks
    Train conductor Dave is Great and should be commended on having him put your customers at ease and have a good sense of humor. Encourage him and don't discourage him.

    VRE Response
    Thanks Sam.

  • Diane from Prince William Country, VA asks
    If it's not an invasion of privacy, could I ask the status of the person hit by the train on Monday in Woodbridge?

    VRE Response
    We have not received an update Diane.

  • Davin from Woodbridge, VA asks
    Why does VRE go slower than Amtrak? Last week VRE was on Track #2 and Amtrak #3, both trains going north. The Amtrak train flew past VRE. So, why was VRE going much slower than Amtrak? VRE should be going faster. Luckily, VRE was able to past in front of Amtrak after leaving Alexandria.

    VRE Response
    It just depends on the signals, other traffic, and the number of station stops Davin.

  • Davin from Woodbridge, VA asks
    Last week, Train #309 was crowded on Tuesday and Wednesday evening. This train would benefit from having an extra car added making it an 8 car train. Sometimes when I get on at L'Enfant, the people that get on at Union Station take up most of the seats on the upper level leaving few left for us.

    VRE Response
    Duly noted Davin.  We are working to get all trains to 8 cars.

  • Cynthia from Orange, VA asks
    Congrats on your customer service award. Brenda and Naquana are shining examples of their helpfulness!

    VRE Response
    Thanks Cynthia, we'll share your comments with Brenda and Naquana.

  • Ellinor J. Washington from Woodbridge, VA 22191 asks
    I LOVE riding the VRE train!!! It is a pleasure to ride into DC to attend activities and visit government buildings, museums and galleries. I would like to see some trains to run on the weekends. Is that a possibility?

    VRE Response
    Not at this time Ellinor, but we are happy to hear you enjoy our service.

  • Marcus from Widewater asks
    Looking forward to Meet the Managers! Will you have less sugary treats for the diabetics among us?

    VRE Response
    We are also looking forward to it Marcus.  The cookies will still be a part of the event, but we'll see if we can add a healthier option as well.  See you out there!

  • Lou M from Burke, VA asks
    Question regarding ticket, As a monthly rider, can we have both electronic and paper ticket? reason to ask is if I forget one, I have another backup. Thank you.

    VRE Response
    If you are asking whether we would provide both a mobile and a paper ticket for a monthly rider, the answer is no.  However, keeping a paper Free Ride Certificate with you is a perfect use of the FRC's for monthly ticket holders.

  • Pam from Fredericksburg asks
    Hello, Let me preface this complaint by saying I have empathy for those passengers who are in need and use service animals; however, I don't see the need for those animals to be placed on a seat. I have spoken to and complained about these dogs being placed on seats to numerous conductors and I have sent messages to @GOTRAINS.VRE about this practice. The personnel at @GOTRAINS.VRE responded and stated that service animals are to be placed on their owners lap or at the feet of their owners, but never on the seats. I have shown the email responses to at least one conductor who told me he didn't know who @GOTRAINS.VRE was... and told me that the dogs could indeed sit on the seats. Can you please state the VRE Policy as it applies to service animals being placed on the seats and if the policy is that they are not allowed, can you please encourage the conductors to enforce the mandate?

    VRE Response
    Hi Pam, thank you for the comment.  You are correct in that service animals should be placed on the owner's lap or at their feet.  We will check with the conductors to see if a special accommodation has been made for this particular circumstance and will follow-up with you through your gotrains submission.

  • Kevin from Broad Run asks
    You guys are A-OK in my book! Looked at your FAQ and it answered all my questions on Gainesville extension and a comprehensive answer about queuing.

    VRE Response
    Thanks Kevin.  Good to know the information we have out there is helpful and being utilized.

  • Debbie from Broad Run, VA asks
    I understand that we are in 2018, but does that have to mean that all levels of customer service and treatment of passengers to make them feel special have to reside in the proverbial trash can? You have some extremely kind and courteous conductors that take the extra step each and every day by helping passengers to get off the train or by merely taking their bags for them as they get off. These little things go a long way especially if they can prevent someone from falling, but you have some conductors that choose to stand as far away from the doors and the idea of helping passengers get off the train or removing their bags as possible. That speaks volumes to me and other passengers that VRE Conductors do not all believe in providing the best level of customer service possible to its riders. We should never have to ask for help or worry that we may fall as we are getting off the train and know that VRE is not there to help. Please try to instruct your conductors to always provide the highest level of assistance and stop just standing by, then what are they there for?

    VRE Response
    Thanks Debbie.  The conductors should always be near the doors on the platform to assist as necessary.  We can't have a conductor at every door, but if you know you'll need assistance, just ask the conductor where you can detrain with the best opportunity of having someone there to assist you.

  • Lee from Chantilly asks
    Train 328 (and I presume others) are using tracks 23/34 at Union Station. The regular escalator is undergoing maintenance. Would someone please replace a lightbulb or two over the other escalator? On cloudy days, it's almost as dark as pitch. I stumbled at the top of it the other day, because I couldn't see where escalator ended.

    VRE Response
    Thanks for the feedback Lee, we have shared your comments with Amtrak.

  • Sharon from Woodbridge, VA asks
    I just want to commend Tony, Darnell and Hoover with their professionalism this past Monday when a pedestrian was struck by train 311 just before we reached the Woodbridge station. I was on that train and they did a fantastic job of informing passengers of what was going on and keeping us calm.

    VRE Response
    Thank you for the kind words Sharon.  We'll share them with the crew.

  • James from Fredericksburg asks
    I found a white nationalist flyer in my survey today saying support VRE, they have picturesque upper management that keep people in their places, come meet them later this month. Hopefully trolls aren't using you as a marketing tool for the cause.

    VRE Response
    James, we will be happy to look into this.  If possible, please forward us a copy of the flyer and which train you were on to

  • Dave from Woodbridge asks
    Do you anticipate any additional trains being added to each line over the next year or two? If so would the Express possibly get an earlier start? Could there potentially be trains added heading south about 2-230pm?

    VRE Response
    Sorry Dave, we have no immediate plans to add trains, however, we will be adding capacity by lengthening existing trains.

  • Dave from Woodbridge asks
    Good morning. Has the policy changed for standing in the stairway? On most trains you can stand in the stairway prior to your stop but on 303 we have been told there is no standing in the stairways.

    VRE Response
    Standing is not permitted on stairs or in vestibules.

  • Dave from Springfield, VA asks
    Can we get one click access to the live train tracker in the VRE app? Currently it's buried deep within. Also - can the app be made completely mobile friendly? Some features are just a regular version of the website, which isn't mobile friendly.

    VRE Response
    We'll look at it Dave,  Our website is mobile-friendly, so links in the app which send you to information on the website should display properly.  Drop us a note at with your contact information and we'll address any specific issues or ideas you have for optimizing the app.  We appreciate the feedback.

  • Kathleen from Burke asks
    Can someone please let the female conductor on train 328 know that her announcements each morning are excessive? Letting folks know which doors will not open is good info, but we don't need to know what each car number is because riders generally don't know their car numbers. We also don't need to hear that announcement repeated 4 times each stop. Thanks

    VRE Response
    Thanks Kathleen.  We have shared your comments with the Managers at Keolis.

  • Jared from Spotsy, VA asks
    When are the speed bumps at the Spotsy station being removed? Every driver at the station hates them and they do a real number on everyones vehicle

    VRE Response
    Unfortunately Jared, the speed bumps were placed there because drivers were exceeding 35 miles per hour.  If we replace these specific bumps, they will be replaced with a different type of speed control device.

  • Sharon from Manassas Park, VA asks
    I used the VRE Rider app when it first came out and loved it. For about a year now it has not worked on my iPhone 6S. I tried delete and reload and it tells me to reconfigure it. I tried this morning and the same message and it glitches off. Are you working on making his app work? I noticed it has only 11/2 star rating so it's not working for any of us.

    VRE Response
    The Go VRE Rider app is a third party app that we have no control over. We have heard that it is no longer being supported. Our website, however, is now mobile friendly: You may wish to bookmark that page onto your phone for the latest schedules and train status.

  • Obi-wan from Kingstown, VA asks
    Any status update on Metro changing their discriminatory pricing rates at Sprinfgfield? Also, have you checked the VRE side stair case at Springfield that goes up to the cross-over? For work that was done so recently I am shocked at the amount of rust and corrosion, hopefully just typical for this climate. If not typical, then VRE should get its money back from the contractors who did that work.

    VRE Response
    VRE continues to work with WMATA (Metro) on the price of parking at the Franconia/Springfield station.  We will keep everyone posted if the situation changes.  We will ask our Facilities Manager to check out the stairway you mentioned.

  • Cole from Burke VA asks
    Where should bikes be stowed when riding the train? I was in a car this week that was standing room only while two bikes were being stowed so that they blocked three priority seats that could have been utilized by ticketed passengers who were forced to stand.

    VRE Response
    Collapsible bikes are permitted on any train and may be stowed in the luggage rack of each car.  Full sized bikes are permitted on the last three trains on each line, in each direction, and the midday train on each line. They should be properly stowed in front of the flip down seats.  We have limited the full sized bikes to certain trains because those trains generally have the available capacity to accommodate bikes.  We realize sometimes crowding makes this difficult, but the conductors are always available to assist as necessary.

  • Christy from Spotsylvania, VA asks
    Any lessons learned from this week's incident? It's a shame so many people are careless on the tracks.

    VRE Response
    Good question Christy.  After any major service disruption we hold a debrief with the host railroads, train crews, VRE staff, the bus operators, and any other groups who may have been involved.  In the interest of continuous improvement, we always find takeaways to prevent further occurrences, or improve the communications or response to future events.  This incident was no different.

Welcome to the May, 2018 edition of VRE’s Online Forum.  We would like to start by thanking everyone who completed a survey this morning on your ride to work.  The annual customer service survey gives us great feedback on the rider’s perception of our service, and some insight on how we can continue to improve.  As always, we’ll share the full results on our website once complied, and we’ll highlight some of the most popular topics in upcoming issues of RIDE magazine.

Joining us in the studio today is Paul, Chief Mechanical Officer from Keolis, Tyreese, Transportation Manager from Keolis and Brian from CSX. 

Let’s get on to the questions!