Metro bus service will return to the Pentagon on Sunday, Dec. 16, and will operate from a new Pentagon Transit Center to be formally dedicated Monday, Dec. 17, at 1 p.m EST. The larger, brighter and more security-conscious transit center will bring regular bus service back to the Pentagon for the first time since Sept. 11. Since that date Pentagon-bound buses have operated from the Pentagon City Metrorail station.
The dedication ceremony will be held at the transit center, which is located above the Pentagon Metrorail station in the south parking lot area of the Pentagon. Metro and senior DoD officials will participate in the ceremony. Parking for media coverage will be available in the Pentagon's South Parking lot. The point of contact for this event is Brett Eaton, (703) 693-8933.
The Pentagon Transit Center, a $36 million project funded by DoD, was designed and planned long before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. It is phase one of security upgrades set for the Pentagon's Metrobus and Metrorail facilities. Based on security assessments, the Pentagon wanted to increase the distance between buses and the Pentagon as well as eliminate the existing Metro escalator and elevator entry points into the Pentagon. This required the relocation of the existing bus terminal.
The transit renovation project enhances the security of the Pentagon's Metro entrance by reorganizing the bus arrival, access and circulation areas, including the relocation of the bus bays to no closer than 280 feet from the Pentagon itself. The buses picking up and dropping off riders at the old bus terminal had been as close as 10 feet to the building.
Other security upgrades involve the construction of a new Pentagon entrance building and new elevator and canopy at the metrorail entrance with an expected completion by fall 2002. Until it is finished, a temporary covered walkway will allow customers to walk from the new transit center to the escalator to enter the metrorail station.
About 29,000 people a day will use the Pentagon Transit Center, which will have 1,571 bus arrivals and departures each weekday on 84 different bus routes using the center's 24 bus bays.
Additional information on Pentagon metro facility renovation is available at http://metro.pentagon.mil/ . Details on Metro bus and rail service may be found at http://www.wmata.com . An informative brochure on the new Pentagon Transit Center also is available at http://www.wmata.com/metrobus/pentagon_transit_center.pdf . [Link no longer available.]