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Washingtonians Miss Metro So Much, They’re Thinking About DIY Next-Train Displays

You can make your own "PIDS" at home.

Remember staring at a disappointing wait time with impatience? Sigh. Photograph via Wikimedia Commons.

Staying at home for months on end has people getting very crafty. Recently some folks have gotten a little nostalgic for pre-pandemic DC life, particularly when it comes to Metro. On Reddit, one project that people are eager to try (or buy) is a DIY next-train board (known officially as Passenger Information Display Signs, or PIDS).

One user posted this proud photo and wrote that the LED contraption “uses a live feed from WMATA to update the train times. It’s set right now to the Smithsonian Station.” The Redditor also mentioned a tutorial video was forthcoming, though they haven’t yet shared. (I cannot say I know how this magic works, but it sounds super useful for commuting!)

I’m sure it’s been done before, but I made an at-home DC Metro train sign this weekend from washingtondc

It’s not too surprising that Metro is so popular in nostalgic crafting. Back in May, we wrote about the many Washingtonians who were recreating their favorite parts of DC in Animal Crossing, including Rachel Mooney, who spent five hours putting together a Metro platform. This week, a different Reddit user shared a board that he made (pre-Covid) and someone’s actually offering to buy it. Is everyone going to start Metro crafting?

Saw someone post a similar metro board a few weeks ago and thought I’d share the one I built a couple years ago! from washingtondc


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Web Producer/Writer

Rosa joined Washingtonian in 2016 after graduating from Mount Holyoke College. She covers arts and culture for the magazine. She’s written about anti-racism efforts at Woolly Mammoth Theatre, dinosaurs in the revamped fossil hall at the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum, and the horrors of taking a digital detox. When she can, she performs with her family’s Puerto Rican folkloric music ensemble based in Jersey City. She lives in Adams Morgan.