Over the past four decades, DC's Metro system has grown exponentially. A 4.6 mile -seven station- starter line opened March 27, 1976. As of 2017, the network stretched for 117 route miles, with ninety-one station stops. The 23 mile -twelve station- Silver Line Extension, to TYSONS CORNER CENTER and Dulles International Airport, is now under construction. Its 11.6 route mile first phase began revenue service in July 2014.
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Arlington, Virginia's subterranean CRYSTAL CITY complexes became the first Metro-adjacent shopping malls, in 1977. The next came along in 1984, when the struggling ROCKVILLE MALL, in Maryland, was reinvented as ROCKVILLE METRO CENTER.

The Metro system was extended to Arlington, Virginia's BALLSTON COMMON (1986) and FASHION CENTRE AT PENTAGON CITY (1989). Subway routes soon reached Maryland's WHEATON PLAZA (1990) and PRINCE GEORGES PLAZA (1993). Other malls indicated on the diagram above were located near, but still a distance away from, a Metro stop.

In the 21 century, two lifestyle centers have been built at Metro stations; Virginia's MARKET COMMON AT CLARENDON (2001) [not indicated on map] and Maryland's THE BOULEVARD AT THE CAPITAL CENTER (2003). In 2014, Virginia's TYSONS CORNER CENTER became a Metro-adjacent shopping mall.