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Question for DC Otters

Old 01-23-08, 10:02 AM
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Question for DC Otters

A friend and I are driving down to DC a couple Saturdays from now. What would be easier: driving in to the city and parking in a garage, or parking at a Metro station and taking the train in?

If it's the latter, what would be the easiest station to get to if we're coming from Philadelphia?
Old 01-23-08, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Tracer Bullet
If it's the latter, what would be the easiest station to get to if we're coming from Philadelphia?
Can you pick me up a couple of Philly Cheesesteaks?
http://forum.dvdtalk.com/showthread.php?t=521129

If you are coming during a weekend, your best bet is to drive. Parking is NOT a problem in DC on a weekend, especially in the Winter. Plenty of street parking and the convenience of having a car.
Old 01-23-08, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Tracer Bullet
A friend and I are driving down to DC a couple Saturdays from now. What would be easier: driving in to the city and parking in a garage, or parking at a Metro station and taking the train in?

If it's the latter, what would be the easiest station to get to if we're coming from Philadelphia?
Too many variables.

What are you doing in the city and at what time are you doing it? New Carollton would be the most convenient stop off the capital beltway.

http://www.wmata.com/metrorail/Stati...cfm?station=68
Old 01-23-08, 10:15 AM
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We're not sure, but since we're only there for the day it'll probably be all monumenty and museumy. National Portrait Gallery, Air and Space Museum, Capitol, maybe the Lincoln Monument.

Probably arriving around noon-1PM and leaving later that evening.
Old 01-23-08, 10:19 AM
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Another variable is do you know your way around DC, or do you have GPS? If so driving is much more convenient and there is NO TRAFFIC.
Old 01-23-08, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Tracer Bullet
We're not sure, but since we're only there for the day it'll probably be all monumenty and museumy. National Portrait Gallery, Air and Space Museum, Capitol, maybe the Lincoln Monument.

Probably arriving around noon-1PM and leaving later that evening.
There is on street parking and garages near the mall and the traffic is lighter in the winter time but you are taking a chance at that time of day. Also be sure to check hours of various things including Metro, they have shorter hours on the weekends that the weekdays, it is not a 24 hour system.
Old 01-23-08, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Mankal
Another variable is do you know your way around DC, or do you have GPS? If so driving is much more convenient and there is NO TRAFFIC.
This will be the driver's (not me) first time in DC, so that's a big no.
Old 01-23-08, 10:27 AM
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hmm, I'm thinking he is better off with the metro. Don't get me wrong, I hate metro, but it will be harder for them to get lost on metro. You do need to watch the hours though because Metro does close.
Old 01-23-08, 11:15 AM
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If you're just in town for the day I'd recommend driving in. You're going to waste too much valuable time on the metro ride. Also, there is plenty of parking, especially if you include garage parking that is P and/or hotel.

Just watch out for the red light cameras. They will get you! There are no points, but you pay $$. It's been a while since I've been in Philly, but in DC the lights are on posts on the side, not hanging above, so I would be on the look out for that.
Old 01-23-08, 11:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeeden
hmm, I'm thinking he is better off with the metro. Don't get me wrong, I hate metro, but it will be harder for them to get lost on metro. You do need to watch the hours though because Metro does close.
midnight Sun - Thurs, 2am Friday and Saturday...

if driving/parking in DC, also watch out for signs that say Mon-Sat 2hr. - there's no rhyme or reason why some streets have this and other not.

Last edited by Giles; 01-23-08 at 11:18 AM.
Old 01-23-08, 11:16 AM
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I'd say your best bet is to drive to New Carrolton station (right where US-50 and 95/495 intersect) and taking the Orange Line in to the Mall area. Driving in DC isn't that easy, particularly for people who have never done it before.

You better check the hours of those museum/gallery places too - I can't imagine that they are open late in the day so arriving at 1 pm may not give you much time.
Old 01-23-08, 11:19 AM
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National Portrait Gallery/American Art Museum actually says open til 7pm
Old 01-23-08, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Red Dog
I'd say your best bet is to drive to New Carrolton station (right where US-50 and 95/495 intersect) and taking the Orange Line in to the Mall area. Driving in DC isn't that easy, particularly for people who have never done it before.

You better check the hours of those museum/gallery places too - I can't imagine that they are open late in the day so arriving at 1 pm may not give you much time.

I don't drive from Philly, but wouldn't a Philly person just head down 95? If so, why not hit the Greenbelt Metro. It's right near the intersection of 95 and the Beltway. Seems easier than New Carrolton.
Old 01-23-08, 11:37 AM
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metro... unless it was similiar to last weekend when Metro Center was under construction... 6 stops in one hour for blue line travel.
Old 01-23-08, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
I don't drive from Philly, but wouldn't a Philly person just head down 95? If so, why not hit the Greenbelt Metro. It's right near the intersection of 95 and the Beltway. Seems easier than New Carrolton.
Springfield-Franconia is right off of 95 as well.
Old 01-23-08, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
I don't drive from Philly, but wouldn't a Philly person just head down 95? If so, why not hit the Greenbelt Metro. It's right near the intersection of 95 and the Beltway. Seems easier than New Carrolton.
The benefit of New Carrolton is you can get to the Mall/Smithsonian stops w/o having to change trains. I would also recommend driving to the metro and taking that in. I've been in the area for over a decade and I still hate driving in DC.
Old 01-23-08, 12:17 PM
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I see no problem with taking the Metro

http://www.myfoxdc.com/myfox/pages/H...d=1.1.1&sflg=1
Old 01-23-08, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Trelach24
I see no problem with taking the Metro

http://www.myfoxdc.com/myfox/pages/H...d=1.1.1&sflg=1
<--------Notice my location.
Old 01-23-08, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Trelach24
I see no problem with taking the Metro

http://www.myfoxdc.com/myfox/pages/H...d=1.1.1&sflg=1
I've taken Metro twice a day for almost 8 years now. I've seen maybe one minor altercation, but that was between people who seemed like they had a problem even before getting on the train.

I've used rail systems in NYC, Chicago and Boston, and hands down, DC's is the best.
Old 01-23-08, 12:37 PM
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I'd hit Greenbelt before New Carrolton. Sure you're going to have to transfer but you're in and out of the metro station as they have a dedicated exit right off of 495.

I hate driving in DC and try to avoid it at all cost so I would take the metro down.
Old 01-23-08, 01:10 PM
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I recommend metro, New Carrollton station. On a week, trains aren't nearly as frequent, so you want to avoid transfers if at all possible, and Greenbelt will require a transfer.

Originally Posted by Trelach24
I see no problem with taking the Metro
Oh, come on. The metro is extremely safe.
Old 01-23-08, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
I don't drive from Philly, but wouldn't a Philly person just head down 95? If so, why not hit the Greenbelt Metro. It's right near the intersection of 95 and the Beltway. Seems easier than New Carrolton.

Because if they are going to the Mall/Smithsonian area, you take the Orange Line to Smithsonian. If you park at Greenbelt, you will have to transfer from the Green Line.

Also, New Carrolton is only a couple exits further down the Beltway from Greenbelt.
Old 01-23-08, 01:33 PM
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The time spent with the shorter drive and the easier parking make the transfer negligible. Easier in and easier out of Greenbelt.
Old 01-23-08, 01:38 PM
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I disagree. I hate trying to do transfers during non-peak hours on Metro - you never know how the trains are running. And New Carollton is a cinch as well - it is right off 95 and well-signed.
Old 01-23-08, 01:56 PM
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I'd just drive into DC. If it's a weekend, parking isn't that bad at all. And if you're used to driving in NYC or Philadelphia, you shouldn't have a problem with DC.

Only wildcard is whether or not there is some sort of event going on downtown that day.

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