Housing Complex

Metro Wins Award for Enduring Architectural Excellence

metroYou might not know it amid the dim lights, the out-of-service escalators, and the egg crate-like concrete encasing you, but as you wait for your Metro train, you're standing inside an architectural gem.

So decreed the American Institute of Architects, which just bestowed upon D.C.'s Metro system the 25 Year Award for architecture, reports Architect magazine.

The award is given to a project that's between 25 and 35 years old and whose design has stood the test of time. The Metro system opened in 1976, which, the mathematicians among you may note, was 38 years ago. But the phase considered by the jury was completed in 1986—the year the Orange Line was extended out to Vienna.

Metro is currently undertaking a project to install brighter lighting and new stairways in its stations. Is Metro fixing what ain't broke? Or 25 years hence, will we be receiving more accolades for our new and improved stations?

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • Bill Hobbs

    Only those who don't have to use it on a daily basis can say it has stood the test of time. We'll see how the lighting project goes - but undoubtedly "aesthetics" will win out over the ability of riders to actually see in the stations. The number of newly installed and refurbished escalators that continue to have problems also does not portend well for the system.

  • Rik

    The only problem is that Metro is supposed to be a transportation system, not a work of architecture. And the poorly lit stations, slippery floor tiles, cluttered platforms, overdependence on escalators, and lack of a third track are all serious design problems for a transportation system.

  • Jes’ sayin

    Architects groups exist to give each other awards and to tell each other that no matter how much the public hates their stuff, it's wonderful. And they - the architects - tell each other that they know better than those of us who use their creations in our daily life. So no matter that it's dark, dangerous, cluttered, and inoperative. It's excellent in their book!

  • http://los-angeles.localmart.com/apartments-for-rent/ Rachel

    Metro is that transportation system needs total repairing because there are so many people who use it. So it can be dangerous if something is in bad condition. It shouldn’t be the work of art designed by well-known architects, it should be a well-lit place and how people say “slippery floor tiles, cluttered platforms, overdependence on escalators, and lack of a third track are all serious design problems for a transportation system.” It’s good if metro is currently undertaking a project to install brighter lighting and new stairways in its stations.

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