WASHINGTON -- Dreams of taking Metro to Dulles International Airport are one step closer to reality.
Transportation officials signed an agreement Tuesday that will award the Dulles Metrorail project $900 million in federal funds.
Tuesday's signing ceremony between the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority clears the way for remaining work to begin on the first phase of the 23-mile rail extension in northern Virginia, known as the silver line.
“The Dulles rail project will decrease congestion and boost economic development in Greater Washington,” said John Kane, chairman of the Greater Washington Board of Trade. “This Metrorail extension will not only provide a transportation alternative for Greater Washington, it will also serve as a critically-needed economic stimulus package for the region.”
Project managers have already started relocating utilities in the area.
The first phase of the $5.2 billion, 23-mile project will run from the existing Orange Line at East Falls Church through Tysons Corner to Reston. The second phase would run from Reston to Dulles and Loudoun County.
In January, then-U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters gave final federal approval for the project.