Opinion | Metro’s disruptive derailment fallout couldn’t come at a worse time


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That’s a disaster in the making for rail systems in particular, since they are far less flexible than buses and are often designed to funnel outlying workers into central business districts. Even a modest shift toward remote or hybrid work could significantly depress ridership, not just because fewer people will be commuting to downtown offices, stores and restaurants on any given day, but because infrequent commuters may decide to move farther out in search of cheaper housing, then drive in rather than ride. Falling ridership means rising costs to carry each remaining worker, and declining voter support for plugging the resulting budget gaps with subsidies. Obviously, the bigger the shift toward remote work, the bigger those problems get.

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