- The Washington Times - Monday, November 1, 2010

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

As a full-time student at George Washington University, I often rely on the Metro system for transportation. I have found the system to be clean, efficient and even affordable. It is a model system that can be replicated by developing cities like my home of Karachi, Pakistan.

I was thus dismayed and disappointed with the complete chaos and mismanagement of the Metro system during Saturday’s Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert rally. It was unacceptable that Metro officials did not anticipate the volume of the crowds, nor did they have a contingency plan.

All of the trains that we had hoped to board were completely full by the time they got to the Dunn Loring Station, which is the second station on the Orange Line. The system subsequently was useless for anybody trying to board the train after the second stop on the line. The average time between trains was 11 to 12 minutes. Why didn’t Metro officials run trains in the direction of New Carrollton with intervals of two to three minutes as they do during rush hour?

This was a one-time event, and it was dismally mismanaged. A lot of people I knew came from all over the country to attend this rally, only to find themselves stuck in the various stations in Virgina. We finally were able to travel by taxi, but they were few and far between. The Metro system did a great disservice to the hopeful attendees, who were relying on this mode of public transportation. They should develop better systems to deal with events such as these, and the officials should apologize to all the people who were let down by the system.

SYED IMRAN SAQIB

Arlington, Va.


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