Friday, November 15, 2013

Elevated Railway

It's taken years to build this futuristic elevated railway over Route 7 in Vienna, Virginia. Sixty years ago this heavily built-up urban area was a simple crossroads among farm fields. Now it is about to connect directly with Washington, DC by rail, for the first time since the 1940s. The grandeur of its engineering is impressive, especially the curved swoop of the railway, two or three stories high, turning onto the new rail lane in the middle of the Dulles access road. Ultimately the rail will go all the way from DC to Dulles Airport, so you could go directly to your important business trip without using a car at all. Underneath the railway (these were there first) are office buildings, business-oriented hotels, shopping malls, big stores, an urban WalMart with a big garage, car dealerships, and other basic American necessities. There is also a 28-story luxury apartment building at one of the Metro stops, still under construction, in which each apartment will sell for more than a million dollars. 

I drew this in the freezing cold at the still-unfinished Metro station. I sat on a metal bench to do my drawing. They were testing out the pre-recorded announcements which would direct walking traffic at the station. "Please stand away from the door." "Doors closing." But there was no one there, yet, which gave a slightly eerie feeling to the scene. They were also running the first trains over the high rail, to test it all out, and they were empty too.

Brown Pitt technical pen ink on sketchbook page, about 8" x 5", November 14, 2013. I don't want to live here any more.

1 comment:

Rae Trigg said...

I don't want to live here anymore either. Hopefully one day we'll both find a better place to live and work.