Your View: What’s the plan for Potomac Yard cost increases?


By Dino Drudi, Alexandria

To the editor:

At the Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority hearing on the proposed Potomac Yard Metro station, there was no public consensus around City Hall’s preferred Alternative B. However, all official organs of government, including a representative from the Commonwealth as well as the Chamber of Commerce, seem united behind it.

The proposed Potomac Yard station is only the second in-fill station to be constructed in the Metro system. The only other one, in D.C.’s NoMa neighborhood, experienced a huge cost overrun. Slated to cost $75 million, it ended up costing $103 million — a 37 percent overrun. A Metro station sandwiched between an active railroad, wetlands and parkland quite easily could experience even greater cost overruns.

What is City Hall’s plan for financing any cost overrun? Who will bear the borrowing and interest costs? What will the Chamber of Commerce say when citizens suggest that, since the chamber wanted the Metro station that most citizens didn’t, a commercial add-on tax should cover any budget gap?