WASHINGTON -- For the next six months, Metro is giving riders a look into the future generation of rail cars. They'll be testing out five different types of wool fabric seats.
The five fabrics being tested each have a different design and color. Metro officials say they're ready for a change and look forward to hearing what riders think of the new seats.
During this test phase, Metro will also monitor how easy it will be to change the seats, the durability and ease of cleaning and the overall costs of replacing the seats compared with the current ones.
After Metro has a chance to evaluate, they will select one of the new fabrics to install on its next order of cars. The current seats are cleaned on average every 60 days and need to be replaced every couple of years. Those replacements cost Metro $20 each.
In addition to testing out the new seat fabric, Metro has also been testing out new floors.
They also recently completed installation of spring-loaded overhead handles and are working to add nylon straps to give shorter customers a more comfortable ride while they stand. Metro expects to complete that addition by the end of the year.