How About a Mono­rail, Metro?

The Washington Post Sunday - - Letters -

I am not an en­gi­neer, an ar­chi­tect or a trans­porta­tion ex­pert. But in read­ing the ex­ten­sive ar­ti­cles about the ex­ten­sion of the Metro sys­tem from West Falls Church to Dulles In­ter­na­tional Air­port, I won­der whether any­one has ever given thought to the mono­rail. Seat­tle, for ex­am­ple, has shown that mono­rail can be an ef­fi­cient, com­fort­able and in­ex­pen­sive sys­tem for com­muters and tourists.

Ger­many, Bri­tain, Italy, Rus­sia, Ja­pan, Sin­ga­pore, China, Thai­land, Malaysia, the United Arab Emi­rates and Aus­tralia have mono­rails. There must be a sound rea­son so many na­tions have turned to this mode of mass tran­sit.

Mono­rail would be a cheaper way to ex­tend Metro than the two so­lu­tions pro­posed: com­pletely above­ground, and par­tially above and un­der­ground (through Tysons Cor­ner). Mono­rails, from what I read, are less ex­pen­sive to build, main­tain and op­er­ate.The py­lons on which the Seat­tle mono­rail rests also are a great deal more at­trac­tive and oc­cupy less sur­face space than the ones sup­port­ing Metro­rail tracks.

Would not the Wash­ing­ton area ben­e­fit from a mod­ern, at­trac­tive mass-tran­sit sys­tem that would re­flect 21st-cen­tury think­ing? HOWARD G. NEU­BERG


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