Tuesday, January 22, 2008

N-22 Shuttle From Union Station To Nationals Park


A fact finding tour was in the works for me this afternoon, prompted by a comment left by Neal. The DC Circulator Bus has become a popular and inexpensive way to move around Washington, DC. One of the best transportation deals in town, this $1 service currently runs on three different routes around Our Nation's Capital. One circuit operates around The National Mall and The Monuments, another between The DC Convention Center, Georgetown and The Naval Observatory and finally--the line most intriguing to Fans of Our Washington Nationals--The Union Station/SW Waterfront Line.

Many have rumored or wished, that this particular DC Circulator Bus be modified and continue on to New Nationals Park. Karyn LeBlanc, The Director of Communications for The DC Government, kindly returned my call this afternoon to answer my questions concerning this matter. As it turns out--The DC Circulator Buses WILL NOT be re-routed for the 2008 Baseball Season to the new ballpark. But, DC is working with WMATA (Metro) to modify the current N22 Metrobus--which runs from Union Station to The Navy Yard (The Military Base) and Navy Yard Metro. A Service Change is underway to allow the N22 to not only stop at New Nationals Park--but get there faster.

Currently, the N22 runs its route from approximately 6AM to 7:30PM. LeBlanc says that plans are on track to run the N22 Shuttle from Union Station and back until 10:30PM--not later. Also, in its present configuration--the N22 does not operate on weekends. The possibility of adding that service is also being worked out. Even more importantly, WMATA is on a target to cut down the transit time of the N22 from 18 Minutes to 10 Minutes--making the trip a truly fast shuttle. She told me nothing is definite at this point--but if everyone signs off on the plans--an official announcement may come in the next 7 to 10 days.

Cost for the planned service--$1.25 (with SmartTrip Card), $1.35 (Cash)--each way.

Now--you may realize as I did--10:30PM might not be late enough for certain ball games. Karyn LeBlanc stated that the 10:30PM end time of the service would most likely stay in effect for 2008--but could be adjusted come 2009.

As for The DC Circulator--2009 would be the earliest--that servicing will be added to that line for New Nationals Park.

PS--My Office is one block from Union Station. if the N22 does make a 10 Minute Dash from Union Station to New Nationals Park on weekdays when I am at work--you can count me in for the ride.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks SBF that could a very interesting and cost effective alternative to parking for BIG $$$!

mike edgar said...

SBF,

I have a question about the parking passes. The parking materials that I received refer several times to a single parking pass. Do you know if it will literally be one pass that is used for all of the games, or if it will be a collection of passes, a seperate one for each game, as we had at RFK this past season. Since I'm with a group of people, a single pass would not be possible for us, but we could split a series of passes on a per game basis as we did last season. If you don't know, do you have any way of finding out? Thanks!

janet said...

SBF -- I'd looked at the N22 as an option to get to the ballpark, and figured my best option would be to walk to Capitol South to catch an Orange line train to get home.

But looking at the map, it looks like the route goes toward Eastern Market and Capitol South -- which are both Orange and Blue Line stations. It would require extending the hours and operating on weekends, but if Metro makes the N22 a viable option to get to either or both of those stations after games, I would be ABSOLUTELY ECSTATIC!!!

MsZimmy said...

My office is 1 block from Union Station, too. Who knew we worked so close to one another? (I'm at 500 N. Capitol.)

It's good that the N22 will run to the park from Union Station. There was a bus that ran to RFK from Union Station (but I don't remember if there were any stops in between). I never took it because I always took the MARC home and got the car, but it would have been a convenient option.

Screech's Best Friend said...

Mike Edgar: I actually had this discussion with some folks at The Nationals Office. If you purchase a parking pass for 81, 41 or 20 Games--you will receive a PARKING TICKET BOOK, much like the Game Ticket Book, that are specific for EACH GAME. If The Nationals handed out One Pass Period for each Parking Patron--they feel that could not control the parking as well. This came up when I asked whether there was a possibility of buying a Half Season Generic Plan--good for any game. No. Their fear was that too many might show up on one specific day--leaving some with no place to park. That's my understanding.

MsZimmy: 400 N. Capitol!! We must visit!!

Anonymous said...

Well. I guess the N-22 will help people working near Union Station but there can't be many falling into that category. I am also wondering how safe it is to ride a bus in DC after rush hour???

mike edgar said...

Thanks, SBF. After I asked you about this, I emailed my ticket rep and she told me the same thing that you did. My group decided to request $15 parking only, figuring that being a little farther away from the stadium might actually make getting to and from the games a little easier even if we have to walk a littl farther. We didn't want to pay more than $15, however, so we'll use Metro if there are no $15 passes left when they get to us. I'll be going to several games outside my plan, as well, so I will definitely be taking Metro for those.

An Briosca Mor said...

Sounds like the N-22 could also be useful for fans taking the Red Line. Taking the bus from the stadium to Union Station to hop directly on the Red Line could be quicker than getting on the Green Line at Navy Yard and then transferring to Red at Gallery Place or wherever it is that you do the Green-to-Red transfer.

Mike Bowers said...

Nats Spring Training Pre-sale - SBF, I thought you would be interested to know about what appears to be not the best planning by our Nats for Season Ticket Holder Spring Training Pre-sale. I was excited that tickets went on sale this morning for season ticket holders as opposed to 9AM saturday for general public. That was until I went online and found that there were no great tickets availble and no tickets behing our Nats dugout. I got in toucjh with someone at Space Coast Stadium, who had already recieved a simular calls. He informed me that the Nats only made ceratain seats availble for the pre-sale, and apperently the best seats were not included. He said that I may be able to get better seats by waiting until saturday. This seems to not really be rewarding season ticket holders. Possibly even worse scenario is season ticket holders who buy tickets today (without this information) only to find out later they could have gotten better tickets for the same price if they had waited.

Screech's Best Friend said...

Mike Bowers: Although I don't condone it, The Orioles have operated in a similar fashion when it comes to their Pre-Sale of Regular Season Games. Baltimore doesn't open up their best seats right away--holding them back for reasons I am not sure of. Like last season, when The Nats played at Camden Yards--the PreSale tickets were decent, but not great seats. After the 2007 season began-- much better seats became available. As far as Pre-Season--I don't think The Nats Sell Out too many exhibition games. Might be prudent to wait. Sorry to hear this though.

paul said...

Anyone else going to the Nats-Cards game in Jupiter on March 25?

Mike Bowers said...

SBF - thanks for the info, I think I will wait. I'll let you know if it pays off... Baseball in Febuary, I can't wait.

An Briosca Mor said...

"Like last season, when The Nats played at Camden Yards--the PreSale tickets were decent, but not great seats. After the 2007 season began-- much better seats became available."

Perhaps the Orioles were still holding out hope that someone might snatch those great seats up as part of a season ticket plan. If some Nats fan like SBF came in and bought a seat for just that one game, it would render that great seat unavailable for any season plan of which it was a part. Once the season started, they probably figured out that they weren't going to sell any more season tickets and opened up those seats for individual game sales.

The Nationals appear to be doing a similar thing with seats in the Infield Gallery. I tried to get my 20-game plan there, but I was denied because they said they'd already sold all the Infield Gallery seats that were eligible for 20-game plans. They would however sell those seats for full season plans. Now I see the single-game price list and note that seats are apparently going to be available in the Infield Gallery when single game sales begin. (It's not marked as Sold Out like club seats, etc, are.) So I guess if I wanted to I could go in and create my own 20-game plan of Infield Gallery seats whenever single game ticket sales start. But of course if I did so I'd be paying single game/premium game price for the tickets, not STH discount price. There's the catch...

Eric said...

Mike- In 2006, I bought a ticket first thing on the Sat morning when spring training tickets went on sale to the public. I wound up sitting in the first row looking directly over the plate in between a righty batter and the catcher. Can't get much better than that, so I would recommend waiting it out until this weekend.