Tysons Tunnel

I’m often asked whether buying in Tysons is a good deal, since values may go up with the coming metro line. I wish I had a crystal ball every time I asked what a “good deal” was, but in this case, the one thing I do know is that if you’re buying for metro access, you better count on it being a medium- to long-term investment. Today’s “Commuter” page in the Post had this update (paraphrased):

The project’s first leg will go through Tysons Corner to Reston. Work will begin this summer and the initial phase is scheduled for completion in 2013, with the second phase expected by 2016.

A few things immediately come to mind: there’s still quite a big of controversy over whether to build the rail above or below ground. I’m not sure whether those dates in the Post represent the original above ground option, or the much-lobbied for below ground. (See www.tysonstunnel.org for the lobby perspective.) I assume it’s the former, and if so, it’s reasonable to assume any change to the latter would delay. Even if they move forward above ground, when’s the last time you heard of a major construction project finishing on time. NINE years from now?? If that happens, kudos to the planners on that project!

In related long-term construction news, the Springfield Interchange (“Mixing Bowl”) project, which started 8 years ago, is scheduled to be completed this summer. I can’t imagine all those years of commuting joy, dealing with heavy construction, detours, new traffic pattersn — congrats, Springfield! Tysons, you may want to ask for some tips on how to survive the next 9 years.

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