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Remarks of John E. Potter

Remarks of John E. Potter
President and CEO

Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority
Silver Line Dedication Ceremony
November 15, 2022


Thank you, Randy, for hosting this ceremony today... to mark a historic event for the Dulles International Airport... for the Metro system... and for the people of the National Capital Region.

This day has been decades in the making... and has involved the vision and tireless determination of hundreds of people through the years. Rail to Dulles was part of the original vision when the airport opened back in 1962. Over the years... there have been several proposals for rail service... that didn’t come to pass for various economic, political or technical reasons.

But our elected leaders... along with members of the business community... as well as the airport... persevered until the commitment was made to extend the Metrorail system’s Silver Line to Dulles and beyond.

With today’s opening of Phase 2 of the Silver Line... we now have both Dulles and Reagan National airports on the Metro system... to better serve our passengers and employees... and solidify our airports status as tops in the nation for accessibility by public transit.

The Silver Line is bringing enormous benefits to the region.

It provides new access for commuters, shoppers, tourists and other travelers across the National Capital area.

In addition to helping ease traffic congestion, it’s a catalyst for new jobs and economic development all along the Dulles Corridor... as well as a foundation for future growth.

You can see this new economic development all around us.

Just drive along the Dulles Toll Road or Access Highway... and look at all the new office towers and other buildings... with even more under construction.

The Airports Authority is proud to be part of this great success... and the great regional partnership that made it happen.

Our partners include WMATA and state and local governments... especially Fairfax and Loudoun counties and the Commonwealth of Virginia... and officials of the federal government – in Congress as well as the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Other partners are the business community... which has strongly advocated for the project over the years... business partners, including our construction contractors – the Capital Rail Constructors team... led by Clark Construction and Keiwit Construction... who built the rail line and stations... and Hensel Phelps... which led construction of the rail maintenance yard here at the airport.

They represent the thousands of individuals who worked on this project. And, of course, our partners include the airlines serving Dulles... including our largest carrier, United Airlines.

United has about 5-thousand workers here at Dulles... and I know that United and their leaders... including Managing Director Henry Bird, who is here today... will have thousands of airline passengers riding Metro as part of their journey to the 150-plus U.S. destinations and over 50 cities around the world served by United and our other Dulles airlines.

So Henry, thanks to you and the United team for your support of the Silver Line and the service you provide to the people of our region. We’re honored to have you join us today.

And now it’s my pleasure to introduce our next speaker... U.S. Senator Mark Warner.

Senator Warner has been a tireless champion of the Silver Line and rail service to Dulles... going back to his days as governor of Virginia... when this project was first launched. We owe a great deal of thanks to the senator... and our entire congressional delegation... for making today possible.

So now, it’s my pleasure to introduce Senator Mark Warner.

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