Photo by @jbtaylor on Flickr.
Wolf Trap is one of the region’s premier entertainment venues, and you can take transit to most of its major events. Thanks to the Silver Line, the exact route might change.
Right now, the Fairfax Connector provides bus transportation from the West Falls Church Metro station along along route 480 for events at Wolf Trap’s main stage, the Filene Center. The West Falls station is a little over seven miles from Wolf Trap, about a 12-minute drive without traffic.
With the Silver Line up and running, it may make sense to run that connection from the the Spring Hill Metro station. Spring Hill is less than 2.5 miles from Wolf Trap, and the drive can take under five minutes.
Running the Wolf Trap Express from Spring Hill instead of West Falls would require half the number of buses for about the same level of service. That’d save the Fairfax Connector money, and it’d also mean passengers would spend less time on the bus.
Fairfax is open to the change, but it’s not in a hurry
In a chat with Dr. Gridlock last year, Fairfax Transportation Director Tom Biesiadny said that a Silver Line connection to Wolf Trap could be an option this year. But the season of events starts in a little over a month, and so far there is no word of a change.
That could be because there’s reason to consider keeping service as it is. First, passengers traveling from east of East Falls Church (which is home to the vast majority of the system) would likely not see much of a difference in total travel time. While the current routing means a longer time on the bus, it’s almost all on highways, meaning it’s about as fast as Metro.
Also, Spring Hill doesn’t have the bus facilities or parking that West Falls Church does. Finally, a change like this would require new signs and a public education campaign.
It’s unclear whether the benefits of changing the Wolf Trap Express to run from Spring Hill rather than West Falls Church would outweigh the costs. But if they did, it’d be smart to make the change before the start of this year’s concert season.