Celebrating Labor's Role in New Metro Silver Line

Monday, July 28, 2014

Celebrating Labor's Role in New Metro Silver Line(Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO)

When Metro’s Silver Line officially opened in Northern Virginia on Saturday, local labor celebrated its role in the massive transportation project. “What a thrill to be part of the grand opening of this project that was partly built with union labor, will be operated union, and which will benefit working families in our growing region,” said Metro Washington Council President Jos Williams, who was a student at Howard in the early 1960’s when WMATA first discussed the need to cover the entire metro region and who now sits on the Metro Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) Board. Along with dozens of area political leaders and mass transit fans, Williams was joined at Saturday’s ribbon-cutting by Dennis Martire of Mid Atlantic LIUNA, a previous MWAA Board member from Virginia. Phase 1 of the Silver Line -- 11.7 miles of track with five new stations in Northern Virginia — included work done by members of LIUNA, Operative Plasterers and Cement Masons Local 891, Rodmen 201, IBEW Local 26, Elevator Constructors Local 10, and the Mid-Atlantic Carpenters, among others. “The work of transportation is really the work of generations,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “And if we’re not putting those cornerstones in place as a nation, we’re not building for the generations to come afterward. So this is a time to celebrate the voices of ‘yes’ sounding louder than the voices of ‘no.’ The extension in Virginia is to expand by an additional 11 miles by 2018, connecting the rail system to Dulles International Airport. photos: (top right) Metro driver – and ATU 689 member -- Detrick Washington, who drove the inaugural Silver Line train Saturday (photo courtesy FOX5TV); (bottom left): Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe flanked by MWAA board members Warner Session and Jos Williams (photo by Kathleen McKirchy).  


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