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Metrobus is a bus service operated by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA). Its fleet consists of 1,480 buses covering an area of 1,500 square miles (3,900 km²) in Washington, D.C.marker, Marylandmarker, and Virginiamarker. There are over 300 bus routes serving 12,216 stops, including 2,398 bus shelters. In fiscal year 2009, Metrobus provided more than 133 million trips. On a typical weekday, it provides more than 400,000 trips.

Metro stopped issuing and accepting paper bus transfers as of January 4, 2009; bus and rail riders must use a SmarTrip card to receive the transfer discount.

Metro is currently in the process of having 203 New Flyer BRT buses delivered. These new buses will be painted in a Red/Silver (Local) and Blue/Silver(Express) paint scheme. 38 of these 203 buses will be painted in the Express paint scheme while the other 165 will be painted in the Local paint scheme. Metro is also currently in the process of repainting its current buses into the Local and Express paint scheme. Red/Silver painted buses will be used on local routes and Blue/Silver buses will be used on Express routes. These buses will have either "local" or "express" on the top of each side of the bus for easy identification.


The current Metrobus fare structure is as follows:

  • Local bus within District of Columbia (except as noted below): $1.35 (using cash) $1.25 (using SmarTrip)
  • Routes 94, A2, A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, M8, M9, W2, W3, W4, W6, W8 and W9 : 75¢
  • Routes Southbound B2, P1, P2, P6, U2, and 90 at stops at or south of Good Hope Road.: 75¢
  • Express bus: $3.10 (using cash) $3.00 (using SmarTrip)

Discounts may be available for senior citizens, people with disabilities, and DC schoolchildren.

Express routes:B30, J7, J9, P17, P19, W13, W19, 5A, 11Y, 17A, 17B, 17G, 17H, 17K, 17L, 17M, 18E, 18G, 18H, 18P, 29E, 29G, 29H, and 29X.

Transfers and passes

All Metrobuses have SmarTrip card readers which automatically deduct the correct fare from a rider's SmarTrip card (including transfer credit). Formerly, Metrobus issued paper transfers which gave the rider free transfers to any regular bus for two hours. Beginning January 4, 2009, when a rider uses a SmarTrip card they will automatically receive rail-to-bus transfer credit, and bus-to-bus free transfer time for regular buses is increased to three hours. Express routes have different requirements. This section discusses the transfer policy to and from Metrobus and other regional bus operators. The routes can be Metrobus routes or routes of other regional operators. Note that as of January 4, 2009, transfer credit is issued on a SmarTrip card, riders using cash payment cannot obtain a paper transfer, and thus must pay full fare upon boarding the bus.

Cost of bus fare using SmarTrip
From to Local Buses¹ to Express Buses²

(Metrobus or Fairfax Connector)
to PRTC routes
Metrorailmarker $0.75 $2.50 $4.75 to PRTC OmniRide (full SmarTrip fare)

$2.40 to PRTC MetroDirect (full SmarTrip fare)

All other local routes
Free $1.75 $3.50 to PRTC OmniRide

$1.15 to PRTC MetroDirect
Arlington Transit (ART)



Fairfax Connector

(except Routes 380, 595, and 597)


Free $1.75 N/A
Fairfax Connector routes 380, 595, 597

Metrobus express routes

PRTC OmniRide
Free Free N/A
The Bus

Free $1.75 N/A

  1. Local Buses: Metrobus local routes, Ride-On, The Bus (Prince George's County), DC Circulator, Fairfax Connector (except Routes 380, 595, and 597), Connect-A-Ride, Fairfax CUE, DASH, and Arlington Transit.
  2. Express Buses: Metrobus express routes, PRTC OmniRide, PRTC MetroDirect, Fairfax Connector routes 380, 595, and 597.

Fleet roster

All buses are fully accessible under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. All buses have bike racks except for C001-C004.
Year Builder Model Length (ft) Width (in) Engine Transmission Numbers Total Garages assigned to
1990 Flxible Metro-B 40102-6C 40 102 Cummins L10 Voith D863.3 9301-9413 52 Bladensburg, Landover, Montgomery, Southern Avenue Annex
1991 Flxible Metro-B 35102-6C 35 102 Cummins L10 Voith D863.3 9481-9498 11 Landover
1995 American Ikarus 436.06 60 102 Cummins M11E Voith D864.3

(Originally ZF Ecomat 5HP-600)
5201-5245 42 Bladensburg, Northern, Montgomery. Some units retired
1995 Flxible Metro-E 40102-4D 40 102 Detroit Diesel Series 50 Allison VR-731RH 4001-4104 103 Bladensburg, Montgomery, Southern Avenue Annex. 4058 is scrapped due to fire damage.
1997 Orion V

40 102 Detroit Diesel Series 50 EGR Allison B-400R 4200-4412 209 West Ox ,Bladensburg, Landover, Montgomery, Northern, Royal Street, Southern Avenue Annex, Western. Units 4243, and 4307 are scrapped due to fire damage. Units 4404-5 were retired in 2005 and were sent to New York for CUNY service.
1999 Orion V

30 96 Detroit Diesel Series 50 EGR Allison B-400R 3900-3950 51 Landover (3900-3907), Western (3908-3923), Southern Avenue Annex (3924-3950)
2000 Orion VI

40 102 Detroit Diesel Series 50 EGR Allison B-400R 2000-2099 100 West Ox, Landover, Montgomery, Western
2000 Orion V

40 102 Detroit Diesel Series 50 EGR Allison B-400R 2100-2231 132 Northern, Western,
2001 Goshen GCII "cutaway van" 22 96 Navistar T444E PowerStroke V-8 Turbo C001-C004 [1] 4 Four Mile Run
2001 New Flyer C40LF CNG 40 102 Cummins C Gas Plus Allison B-400R 2300-2399 100 Bladensburg
2002 New Flyer C40LF CNG 40 102 Cummins C Gas Plus Allison B-400R 2401-2459 59 Bladensburg
2003 New Flyer C40LF CNG 40 102 John Deere 6081H CNG Allison B-400R 2460-2464 5 Bladensburg
2002 Neoplan AN460 Transliner articulated 60 102 Detroit Diesel Series 60 EGR Allison B-500R 5301-5321 21 Northern
2004 Van Hool A330 40 102 Cummins ISL Voith DIWA D864.3 1101-1129 [3] 29 First Transit
2005 Orion VII

07.501 CNG
40 102 Cummins C Gas Plus Voith DIWA D864.3 2501-2615 115 Four Mile Run
2006 Orion VII

07.501 CNG
40 102 John Deere 6081H CNG Voith DIWA D864.3 2616-2685, 2701-2730 100 Bladensburg, Four Mile Run
2005 New Flyer DE40LF Hybrid 40 102 Cummins ISL GM/Allison EP-40 6001-6014(L), 6015-6039(M) 39 Landover(6001-6014), Montgomery(6015-6039)
2006 New Flyer DE40LFR Hybrid 40 102 Cummins ISL GM/Allison EP-40 6040-6050 (all grey paint scheme) 11 Landover
2007 Orion 07.503 30 102 Cummins C Gas Plus Voith DIWA D864.3 3001-3035 35 Bladensburg, Four Mile Run
2006 New Flyer D40LFR 40 102 Cummins ISM Voith DIWA D864.3 6101-6217(6206-6217 are suburban configuration) 117 Landover, Montgomery, Southern Avenue Annex
2007 New Flyer C40LFR CNG 40 102 Cummins Westport C Gas Plus Voith DIWA D864.3 2801-2825[4] 25 Bladensburg
2008 NABI 60-BRT CNG 60 102 Cummins Westport ISL G Allison B-500R 5401-5422 22 Bladensburg
2008/2009 New Flyer DE42LFA BRT 42 102 Cummins ISL Allison EP40 Hybrid Drive 6301-6461 161 Landover, Montgomery, Northern, Western, West Ox
2009 New Flyer DE62LFA BRT 62 102 Cummins ISL Allison EP40 Hybrid Drive 5431-5452 8/22 Northern, Montgomery
2009 New Flyer DE37LFA BRT 37 102 Cummins ISL Allison EP40 Hybrid Drive 3751-3770 19/20 Northern, West Ox
Grand total of buses: ~1,612+

  1. C001-C004 are owned by the Transportation Association of Greater Springfield (TAGS) and operated by WMATA from Four Mile Run under contract, only on Routes S80 and S91.
  2. 3951-3954 are owned by the City of Falls Churchmarker and operated by Forsythe Transportation under contract from the Arlington Garage only on GEORGE services. These buses have now been renumbered and are no longer operated by WMATA as of July 6, 2009. [235517]
  3. 1101-1129 are for the DC Circulator service, with partial funding by WMATA, operated by First Transit under contract.
  4. 2801-2814 are painted in blue and grey livery for the route 79, also known as MetroExtra. The rest (2818-2822 and 2824-2825)are in normal WMATA bicentennial colors, red, white & blue. All of the 2800s operate from Bladensburg Division.
  5. 2401-2464 were originally going to be Pierce Transit buses but were delivered to WMATA instead with WMATA specifications.
  6. 5401-5422 were "piggybacked" onto an enormous 60-BRT order by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. These new 60-BRT buses are painted in red and grey with white and blue striped curved divider from top back to bottom front. This is WMATA's new "LOCAL" paint scheme.
  7. 2823 and 5311 are the first two buses to be repainted in the new "local" paint scheme.
  8. 2320 is also painted in the new "local" paint scheme.[235518] 2320 is the first New Flyer C40LF bus from the 2001-02 model year to be rehabilitated and refurbished by Metro.
  9. 6040 incurred damage to the rear of the bus after being struck by a northbound MARC commuter train during the afternoon rush on March 26, 2009.
  10. 2815-2817 are painted in the new Express paint scheme and is "Green crushed. [235519][235520]
  11. 2665 is painted in the new Express paint scheme and is "Green" crushed.
  12. 6301-6423 are in the Local Scheme and 6424-6461 are in the Express scheme.


There are 9 divisions (a.k.a. garages, yards or lots) in the Metrobus system. Two of them are open on weekdays only.

Open seven days a week:

  • Bladensburg (B), located at 2251 26th Street NE, in the District. (It is the largest lot in the system.)
  • Four Mile Run (F), located near the stream of the same name in southern Arlington at 3501 South Glebe Road, just south of Crystal City. This garage handles West Ox and Royal division routes on weekends.
  • Landover (L), located at 3433 Pennsy Drive in Landovermarker.
  • Montgomery (M), located at 5400 Marinelli Road, just east of Rockville Pike in Rockvillemarker. It is situated a block east of the White Flint station.
  • Northern (N), located at 4615 14th Street, NW in the northwestern portion of the District. The facility is a former trolley barn for the Capital Traction Company.
  • Southern Avenue Annex (P) (also known as simply "The Annex"), located on the Capitol Heights, MDmarker side of Southern Avenue by Marlboro Pike. This garage, which was previously open weekdays only, has now expanded to seven days a week due to the closing of Metrobus' Southeastern division garage on March 28, 2008.
  • Western (W), located on 5230 Wisconsin Avenue, NW in the Friendship Heights neighborhood of the District.

Open weekdays only:

  • West Ox (A), located at Alliance Drive and West Ox Road in Fairfax, VAmarker, right next to Lee Hwy (US 29). This division replaced the Arlington division.
  • Royal Street (R), located on 600 North Royal Street in Alexandriamarker.


The 79, also known as MetroExtra, is a limited stop bus line that operates between Silver Spring Stationmarker and Archivesmarker. Metro Extra operates along the 7th St/Georgia Avemarker (DC) corridor. Service started on March 19, 2007. Metrobus' MetroExtra fleet consists of 14 2007 New Flyer CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) buses painted in the blue and silver scheme (2801-2814), all of which operate out of the Bladensburg division. Although 2801-2814 are painted in the MetroExtra scheme, these buses can appear on other routes as well, depending on what is available.

16th Street Express

The 16th Street Express, also known as the S9, is a new Limited-Stop service that operates between Silver Spring Stationmarker and McPherson Squaremarker along the 16th Street corridor in Northwest, Washington DC.. Although the destination is McPherson Square the true layover is Franklin Squaremarker, which is two blocks east of McPherson Square. It began service March 30, 2009. The 16th Street Express uses New Flyer Hybrid BRT buses. These buses are painted in a blue and silver paint scheme with "Express" branding. 10 of 38 of these Express branded buses will be used on the S9 [235521]. The buses are similar to the MetroExtra painted buses, except they are painted grey on the front half and blue on the back half. And they also have "Express" on the top sides of the bus. The regular bus fare of $1.35 ($1.25 for SmarTrip users) is used for the S9. These buses primarily operate out of the Northern division.

Planned limited-stop routes

Routes offering or planned for limited service, which will eventually be put into service are:
  • Columbia Pike
  • Richmond Highway $
  • Georgia Avenue (in District of Columbia) $
  • Potomac Yard
  • Southern Avenue / National Harbor
  • 30s Line $
  • 16th Street $
  • University Boulevard / East-West Highway (Montgomery County)
  • Veirs Mill Road
  • Leesburg Pike
  • New Hampshire Avenue
  • H Street / Benning Road
  • Eastover / Addison Road
  • Little River Turnpike / Duke Street
  • East-West Highway (Prince George's County)
  • Greenbelt-Twinbrook
  • Massachusetts Avenue / U Street / Florida Avenue / 8th Street / MLK Avenue
  • 14th Street
  • Colesville Road
  • Anacostia - Congress Heights
  • Georgia Avenue (in Montgomery County)
  • North Capitol Street
  • Rhode Island Avenue
  • Rhode Island Avenue Metro to Laurel

$= Currently served by a Limited-Stop line(s).

Richmond Highway Express

Richmond Highway Express, also known as "REX", is a Limited-Stop bus line that operates between King Street Stationmarker and Fort Belvoirmarker along the Richmond Highway corridor in Fairfax County, Virginia. Metrobus' current REX fleet consists of 12 2006 Orion VII 40 ft CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) buses painted in a blue-and-gold paint scheme (2674-2685), all of which operate out of the Four Mile Run division. REX began service on September 26, 2004, replacing parts of Route 9A (which now operates between Huntingtonmarker Metrorail station and the Pentagon). Metrobus' original REX fleet consisted of 12 2000 Orion VI 40 ft buses wrapped (but not painted) in a blue-and-gold scheme (2073-2084) before the aforementioned Orion VII 40 ft CNG buses arrived in 2006.

See also


  1. Approved Fiscal 2010 Annual Budget (PDF), p. 5-7, WMATA (2009)
  2. Metro eliminates paper transfers on Sunday WMATA press release: 2009-1-2
  3. Metro begins express bus service and other improvements to 16th Street Line WMATA press release: 2009-3-30
  4. WMATA official site: Fares (Retrieved 7-Apr-2009)
  5. MetroExtra bus 2811 on the R2 line

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