A station of the D.C. Metro
Lines: Blue, Yellow
Address: DCA, Washington, DC
Location: Adjacent to the airport's Terminal B
Opened: July 1, 1977
Franconia-Springfield, weekdays: 12:26am
Franconia-Springfield, weekends: 2:26am
Addison Road-Seat Pleasant, weekdays: 11:47pm
Addison Road-Seat Pleasant, weekends: 1:47am
Huntington, weekdays: 12:10am
Huntington, weekends: 2:10am
Mount Vernon Square / 7th Street-Convention Center, weekdays: 11:44pm
Mount Vernon Square / 7th Street-Convention Center, weekends: 1:44am
Metrobus: 11P, 13B, 13F, 13G
As the name indicates, the most common reason to use this station is if you are going to or from National Airport. Abingdon Plantation, on the grounds of the airport, is the nearest attraction to the station. This station and West Falls Church are the only stations in the system with three tracks serving passengers.
In April 2001, after considerable controversy in Congress and the local population, the transportation authority's board of directors declined to change the station's name from "National Airport" to "Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport" - the name given to the airport in 1998. Despite letters from 24 members of Congress(mostly Republicans) endorsing the station's name change, the board chose to uphold its 1987 decision that the local governing body (in this case, Democrat-controlled Arlington County) would have final say over station names.
According to a March 2002 article in the Washington Post, the board relented and the station's name was changed. Replacing all of the station's signage cost $100,000, and a systemwide change to maps, fare charts, and pylons is expected to bring the cost up to $400,000 when it is completed in 2004. The name change turned out to be a direct result of Congressional interference: the name change was tucked into a general transportation spending bill that passed in December 2001.
Local opinion continues to be mixed on this matter. Some area residents simply feel the Metro station should reflect the true name of the airport it serves. Others believe it makes no sense to have Reagan's name everywhere - several buildings in downtown DC are already named after the Gipper - given that he was a proponent of small government. Those in favor of the change because they endorse Reagan himself suggest the opponents are angry for partisan reasons. What's done is done, though, and meanwhile train drivers continue to announce the station with a variety of names, from a simple "National Airport" to adding the "Reagan" at the beginning, and even stating the entire station name.
From here you can...
go back to the Metro project,
jump to the yellow or blue line,
go inbound to Crystal City,
or outbound to Braddock Road.