Department of Transportation

Replace Single-Flight METRO Escalators With Stairs

According to METRO’s website 13% of its 588 escalators were not in service today (7/22/10). The majority of those currently being repaired ascend a single flight and the agency spends between $25M-$30M annually (in direct costs) to maintain them. This does not include overhead costs, like energy consumption. Other subway systems utilize stairs for single flights because stairs increase the flow of traffic, are less of a safety liability, and cost little to maintain. Escalators reduce usable walking space, are unnecessary to ascend a single flight, and the METRO system has elevators for those who need them. Let’s get people moving and stop wasting tax payers’ dollars on an unnecessary and broken “luxury.”

 

(In recent years, approximately $150M in federal taxes have directly supported METRO annually. This does not include indirect costs such as transportation subsidies provided through fares. In 2009, Congress authorized $1.5B over the next 10 years for METRO.)

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Idea No. 15433