St. Louis Metro to test single-car MetroLink train service starting March 14

March 10, 2022
The two-week pilot program aims to add flexibility to service. 

St. Louis Metro Transit will launch a two-week pilot program on MetroLink to add flexibility to service.  

The temporary program will begin March 14, when MetroLink will begin to put single-car trains into daily service instead of the normal two-car trains, which have been a familiar sight on the 46-mile MetroLink system for nearly 30 years. 

“As we react to a post pandemic world, we need to challenge ourselves as a transit agency to become more flexible as our ridership changes,” said Taulby Roach, president and CEO, Bi-State Development. “Our region is changing so therefore our transit service must adapt to a post COVID-19 environment where not all employees will return to work in brick-and-mortar buildings.” 

Advantages of using single-car MetroLink trains: 

  • One MetroLink train car would be more efficient for security to patrol. 
  • Wear and tear on the machinery will be reduced in half. 
  • Service can be provided more efficiently with the current ridership level. 

What riders need to know: 

  • Please stand behind the yellow line while the train is in motion. 
  • Single-car trains will be used March 14-27. On Monday, March 28, the agency will return to using two-car trains. 
  • During some rush hours or special events, two-car trains may be used as needed to accommodate increased ridership. 
  • The single-car trains will pull completely forward to the front end of the platform, be prepared to board and exit the train from this section of the platform. 

“We have already identified a few trips during rush hour that we will need to have two-car trains in service to accommodate the volume. The second car can be added back on as MetroLink ridership continues to increase or when special events occur in downtown St. Louis where we see or anticipate higher ridership,” Roach said. “In the long-term, we are moving forward with the process of purchasing newly designed light-rail cars and continuing to add electric vehicles to our bus fleet because those are the types of innovations our customers and the public expect from Metro Transit.” 

MetroLink successfully put single-car trains into service during the recent major winter storm in February as an emergency strategy to help keep trains moving when ice was accumulating on the overhead power wires.