BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Light rail riders are in for less than a smooth ride starting Friday morning.
Alex DeMetrick reports wet weather has eroded tracks and stations are closing.
Light rail trains will not be pulling into stations at Mount Washington, Cold Spring and Woodberry for the next three weeks starting Friday morning.
Along that stretch of track, “our inspectors have been out there. Our engineers have been out there, and they’ve basically said we’ve got to shut it down immediately,” said Paulette Austrich, MTA spokesperson.
That’s because ground under sections of the tracks has eroded away.
Heavy rains that have been battering Maryland are to blame.
It’s the kind of repair work that’s been done before because of flooding, but this time it will take three weeks to fix.
During that same time, the Orioles will host 13 home games and the Inner Harbor Fourth of July fireworks will go off. This coming weekend, the African-American Heritage Festival at Camden Yards is happening.
These are events that could put more traffic into downtown.
Meanwhile, light rail riders are already dealing with trains sharing one track because of needed repairs.
“It’s already an inconvenience with both of them running on one side of the track. So now that it’s going to be three weeks, it’s even worse,” said Paige Johnson, light rail rider.
“Now I know I’m going to be late getting where I’m going. I guess all we can do is hope and pray they can get it together,” said Xavier Bennett, light rail rider.
Bus bridges will make pickups at closed stations, a go-to fix the MTA has used before.
“They have worked out very well. They’ve been pretty effective,” Austrich said.
And buses will start bridging the gap again 5 a.m. Friday.
The MTA says the three-week repair job will cost $1.5 million.
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