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Silver Line Phase 2 Begins

The Silver Line, a 23-mile extension of Metro past Dulles Airport, is one of the largest infrastructure projects in the country. This development will occur in two phases:  Phase 1 is nearly complete, and Phase 2 just was just formally approved to start work.

Phase 1 of the Silver Line branches off from the Orange Line between the East Falls Church and West Falls Church stations. This phase includes four new stations in the Tysons Corner area and one in Reston at Wiehle Avenue. This phase of construction is 94% complete.

Phase 2 of the Silver Line includes six stations across 11.4 miles. The stations will be in Fairfax and Loudon counties at Reston Town Center, Herndon, Innovation Center near Route 28, Washington Dulles International Airport, Route 606, and Route 772/Ashburn.

We will start to see cranes and heavy equipment for Phase 2 construction of the Silver Line in the spring of 2014. But preliminary work like field surveys, site preparations, and geological assessments will begin immediately. Phase 2 construction is expected to last 60 months, with a target completion date of July 2018.

Five contractors bid on the Phase 2 Silver Line project. From the outset, it was stated that the lowest bid that satisfied requirements would win. That low bid turned out to be $1.18 billion from Capital Rail Constructors, which is made up of Clark Construction Group, LLC and Kiewit Infrastructure South Co. Some have criticized the low-bid procurement procedure since it entices contractors to submit artificially low bids with the intention of requesting change orders later that will increase the final cost.

The Silver Line construction project is funded by a combination of revenue from the Dulles Toll Road, airport contributions, and appropriations from federal, state, and local governments. Phase 1 received $900 million in federal funding, but Phase 2 will not be subsidized by the federal government.

In a few years, getting from DC to Loudon County won’t require a car with the completion of the new Silver Line.

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