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New Potomac Yard Metro Station Construction Begins

"It's a long time coming," one resident said

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The ground has been broken on the future Potomac Yard Metro Station in Alexandria.

Officials say it's one of the largest infrastructure projects in the region. The station will add a new stop on the Blue and Yellow lines, between Reagan National Airport and Braddock Road.

The Potomac Yard Metro station is expected to draw up to 12,000 riders a day when it opens in 2022.

The groundbreaking ceremony on Tuesday was held near the planned spot for the station's northwest entrance, near the Regal Potomac Yard movie theatre, officials said.

Riders will cross over freight tracks on a pedestrian bridge to get to the station.

The station will be built right up to the existing Metro system, providing an alternative to car travel on Route 1.

Between 5,000-6,000 cars could be pulled off the road as travelers chose Metro, said Monica Backmon of the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority.

Construction is expected to cost about $320 million. City officials say tax revenue from growth in the area over the next 40 years will help pay for it, along with state funding, developer contributions and a low-interest loan from the Commonwealth Transportation Board.

"I actually grew up here, so I remember when this was a rail yard, or an abandoned rail yard. So it's a long time coming," said resident Mike Porterfield. "The community's just evolved."

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