News of transportation and transit across Arlington this week:
SCOOTERS PICK UP RIDERS – AND COMPLAINTS – DURING FIRST MONTH: Arlington government officials fielded one complaint from the public for every 200 trips on a motorized scooter during the first full month of a pilot program designed to flesh out whether the two-wheeled hipstermobiles belong on the streets of Arlington permanently.
Riders of Lime and Bird scooters took a total of 69,189 trips in October, while the county government fielded 344 complaints about them during the same period, said Jim Larsen of the county government’s Depatment of Environmental Services.
Larsen and other staff briefed County Board members on Nov. 27.
The complaints were logged via an online-reporting system, which could have generated multiple complaints from a single person, county officials said, noting they had not been able to yet fully parse those data.
Complaints most frequently revolved around scooters being ridden on the sidewalk (which is illegal in Arlington), improper parking, unsafe behavior and underage riders.
Police have been ticketing riders who violate the law, but the focus has largely been on education, Larsen said.
County Board members in September voted to allow electric-scooter firms to deploy up to 350 units apiece countywide during a nine-month trial period. Staff plans to come back with a follow-up report in May.
While the focus in Arlington thus far has been on motorized scooters, county officials expect shortly to see an influx of motorized bicycles, as well, County Board members were told.
MEMORIAL BRIDGE TO EXPERIENCE ANOTHER WEEKEND CLOSURE: The National Park Service will close Memorial Bridge, weather-permitting, to drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians from Friday, Dec. 7 at 9 p.m. to Monday, Dec. 10 at 5 a.m.
The closure will allow work crews to install a temporary support structure under the bridge and begin to remove steel from the center span of the bridge as part of a $227 million restoration project.
The work will be rescheduled in case of inclement weather. For updates, see the Web site at https://go.nps.gov/memorialbridge.
DULLES SEES PASSENGER GROWTH, REAGAN NATIONAL REPORTS DECLINE: It was a tale of two dominant carriers at Northern Virginia’s major airports during the month of September:
• At Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, American Airlines reported a 4.7-percent decline in year-over-year passenger activity, due in part to reduced capacity and also as a result of weather-related cancellations.
• At Washington Dulles International Airport, United Airlines saw a 7.9-percent increase in domestic service as well as a smaller increase in international-passenger activity.
The airports as a whole followed their leading carriers, with Reagan National’s September passenger count down 3.6 percent to 1.8 million and Dulles’ up 4.4 percent to 1.99 million, according to figures reported Nov. 13 by the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority.
At Reagan National, JetBlue posted a 9.2-percent year-over-year increase in passengers, but other major carriers reported declines. At Dulles on the domestic front, American posted a 32-percent increase in passengers from September 2017, while Delta and Frontier saw double-digit declines.
On the international side, most carriers serving Dulles saw increases to varying degrees, although Icelandair reported a decline due to reduced service.
At Reagan National, American retained its position as the major carrier, with mainline and regional service representing 48.7 percent of all passengers. Delta was second at 14.9 percent and Southwest third at 14.4 percent.
At Dulles, United and its regional affiliates accounted for 62.7 percent of all passenger traffic, followed by American at 4.5 percent and Delta at 4 percent.
At the region’s third major airport – Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall, operated by the Maryland state government – the passenger total for September was 2.11 million, up 3.4 percent from a year before. Southwest was the dominant carrier, with a 66-percent market share, followed by Spirit (9.4 percent) and Delta (7.8 percent).
For the first nine months of the year, passenger totals stood at 18 million at Dulles, up 4.5 percent, and 17.6 million at Reagan National, down 1.8 percent. Combined, the year-over-year passenger count of 35.6 million was up 1.3 percent from the same January-to-September period in 2017.
For full information, see the Web site at www.mwaa.com.
BWI TOPS IN REGION IN LATEST ON-TIME-ARRIVAL DATA: Among the region’s three major airports, travelers had the best chance of arriving on time in September at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, according to new federal figures.
A total of 84.7 percent of flights into BWI were on time during the month, according to figures reported by the federal Bureau of Transportation Statistics.
On-time arrivals totaled 81.8 percent at Washington Dulles International Airport and 79.9 percent at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. The national average for the month, counting 346 commercial airports, was 82.2 percent.
The dominant carriers at each airport posted mixed results:
• At BWI, Southwest had an on-time rate of 85.8 percent, higher than the airport as a whole.
• At Washington Dulles, United had an on-time rate of 83.4 percent, higher than the airport overall, but Mesa Airlines, which flies as United Express at Dulles and had nearly as many flights (2,046) as United (2,299), had an on-time rate of 79.3 percent.
• At Reagan National, American Airlines had an on-time rate of 77.1 percent, lower than the overall airport average, but Republic Airlines (which flies regional flights for American and United and had the most flights at National during the month) had an on-time rate of 83.8 percent.
Full details can be found at www.bts.gov.