Scott Shenk writes about transportation issues affecting Fredericksburg-area residents. You can email him at

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Shutdown impact on VRE and Thursday’s train schedule

“We’ve been watching it closely,” the Virginia Railway Express’ Mark Roeber said of the federal government shutdown’s impact on how many riders are using the commuter trains. “There’s still a lot of people riding.”

On Tuesday, he said, there was little change in the number of commuters on the trains.

On Wednesday morning, there was about a 30 percent reduction in riders, with about 6,600 taking VRE trains out of Fredericksburg and Manassas. He said several hundred commuters also rode Amtrak trains as part of VRE’s step-up program.

That drop seems significant. But it’s not enough for VRE to cut back on the commuter train schedule, so VRE plans to run its regular schedule on Thursday, Roeber said.

He said VRE will keep monitoring the shutdown’s impact on ridership to see if any adjustment needs to be made.

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