Silver Line debut 1

Regan, Sheridan and Blair Mann wait at the new McLean Metro station for the inaugural eastbound trip coming in from Reston. (Photo by Deb Kolt)

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is slated Tuesday to recommend that the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) modify the name of the McLean Metro station.

Supervisors were set to recommend changing the station’s name to “McLean-Capital One Hall” to draw attention to the new corporate and performing-arts facility Capital One Bank is building on its campus just east of Interstate 495 and Route 123 in western McLean.

Capital One has a long-term agreement with Fairfax County to allow the county government, along with arts and nonprofit groups based in the county, to have “significant” use of the facility, officials said. Changing the station’s name change would help Metrorail riders, they said.

“Capital One Hall will be a significant component in transforming Tysons into a sustainable, walkable, transit- and pedestrian-oriented second downtown in the [metro] region and will drive visitors to the area,” wrote Barry Mark, a Capital One vice president, in an Aug. 20 letter to Fairfax County Department of Transportation director Tom Biesiadny.

“Naming the nearby Metrorail station ‘McLean-Capital One Hall’ will help direct visitors and increase awareness of this new landmark and cultural destination,” Mark wrote.

Capital One would cover the estimated $335,000 cost of renaming the station.

WMATA’s policies generally require that station names be relevant to landmarks, cities, communities, neighborhoods, activity centers or geographical features located within a half-mile of the station; that they be distinctive and not confused easily with other stations; and evoke imagery in the minds of Metro riders.

Station names also generally should be brief, as in 19 characters or fewer including spaces and punctuation, but the proposed change at McLean Station would be 23 characters long.

The WMATA board of directors will make the final determination on the station’s name in conjunction with signage changes associated with Phase 2 of the Silver Line. Two other changes already recommended by county supervisors would drop “UVA” from the West Falls Church-VT station’s name and would eliminate “Corner” to render another station’s name as just Tysons.

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