79°Scattered Clouds

by Tim Regan — August 5, 2016 at 10:30 am 0

PARK(ing) Day in Dupont Circle 2015An annual celebration of public spaces is scheduled to return to the District next month.

The District Department of Transportation announced yesterday that PARK(ing) Day will turn ordinary parking spaces into tiny temporary parks on Sept. 16.

PARK(ing) Day is a global event that challenges businesses, organizations and locals to come up with creative ways to transform metered spaces into public places.

More than 30 tiny parks popped up across D.C. last year, according to DDOT. In Dupont Circle, for instance, Rails to Trails Conservancy turned parking spaces along New Hampshire Ave. NW into a “bike path” lined with real sod.

More info from a DDOT press release:

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by Tim Regan — May 26, 2016 at 10:15 am 0

West downtown planning study map; photo courtesy of DDOT

(Correction: This article originally noted the meeting would take place June 17. It will actually take place June 15. We’ve made the correction below.)

Local officials are looking at several ways to improve transportation for cyclists, pedestrians and bus riders traveling near Foggy Bottom, Farragut and McPherson Square.

The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) is scheduled to host a public meeting next month to talk about its planning study to improve an area that includes:

  • Pennsylvania Ave. NW between 17th St. and Washington Circle
  • H and I streets NW between New York Ave. and Pennsylvania Ave.

The purpose of the study is to enhance the streetscape and to evaluate the possibility of a bicycle facility or cycle track along Pennsylvania Ave. and to “assess the operational feasibility of a contraflow bus lane on H Street NW between New York Avenue and Pennsylvania Avenue,” according to a DDOT notice.

The District’s multimodal transportation plan identified Pennsylvania Ave. NW as a “priority cycle track corridor and H Street NW as a priority high-capacity transit corridor,” officials said.

DDOT employees will share project goals and objectives and solicit public feedback during the June 15 discussion at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library (901 G St. NW) at 6 p.m.

Map courtesy of DDOT

by Andrew Ramonas — May 12, 2016 at 2:45 pm 2 Comments

S4 bus on 16th StreetA future when buses cruise down 16th Street NW with greater ease during rush hour is at least four years in the offing, according to a recently released D.C. government report.

Work to bring dedicated bus lanes to 16th Street NW and eliminate some of the corridor’s bus stops might not wrap up until 2020 or later, says the District Department of Transportation’s “16th Street NW Transit Priority Planning Study” distributed to locals yesterday.

The report, dated March 2016, came after a series of DDOT meetings with locals and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority to discuss ways to speed up bus riders’ commutes on the S1, S2, S4 and S9 lines.

Last winter, DDOT announced it was moving ahead with plans to add bus-only lanes to 16th Street and remove stops at Newton, Lamont, V, Q and L streets NW.

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by Tim Regan — May 12, 2016 at 10:15 am 1 Comment

A proposed project from the D.C. Department of Transportation (DDOT) could change the way pedestrians, cyclists and bus riders use the 14th Street corridor by late 2017.

The department is currently seeking public comment on a streetscape project that would span 14th Street NW from Thomas Circle to Florida Avenue. The design as currently proposed includes new “bulb-outs” that would let buses pick up passengers without pulling out of traffic, “cut-through” bike lanes, new crosswalks, streetlights, bike racks and benches, among other improvements.

The purpose of the design, according to DDOT, is to increase multi-modal safety, improve the corridor’s pedestrian safety and ADA compliance and add new character to the area. DDOT project manager Rick Kenney presented the design before Logan Circle’s ANC 2F and 14th Street/U Street’s ANC 1B during the commissions’ monthly meetings last week.

“It’s going to make a significant improvement to the commercial corridor,” said Commissioner John Fanning during ANC 2F’s meeting.

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by Andrew Ramonas — May 3, 2016 at 3:35 pm 0

Streetcar on H Street NED.C. and federal officials still are looking at connecting Union Station to Georgetown, via a streetcar line through downtown, despite the trouble the District had adding trolleys to a 2.4-mile stretch of Northeast.

The District Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration are scheduled to host a public meeting later this month to talk about the project that could bring 3.3 miles of streetcar track from 3rd Street NE to 33rd Street NW, mostly centered on or near K Street.

The May 17 discussion at the Carnegie Library (801 K St. NW), the first public gathering on the expansion since 2014, will focus on the environmental and cultural effects of a new streetcar line in Northwest. Community meetings on the project also are slated for fall 2016 and early 2017.

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by Tim Regan — April 18, 2016 at 11:00 am 3 Comments

Bike Blessing photo via Church of the Ascension and Saint AgnesA downtown church will try to heal the “awkwardness” between cyclists and local religious folk by hosting an inaugural bike-blessing event next month.

Cyclists are instructed to gather on the lawn at the Church of the Ascension and St. Agnes (1217 Massachusetts Ave. NW) for the ceremony, which is slated for Saturday, May 7 at 11 a.m.

The plan, says Father Dominique Peridans is to bring local cyclists and residents together for a “bridge-building gathering.”

“We’ll gather on the front lawn of the church . . . there’ll be a short, ten fifteen minute blessing for the whole crowd gathered,” Peridans said. “It’ll be a time for people to interact.”

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by Andrew Ramonas — February 3, 2016 at 4:40 pm 0

Crosstown Multimodal Transportation Study map (Photo via Google Maps/DDOT)

D.C. residents unhappy with traffic lights, bicycle lanes and other parts of the travel experience through Columbia Heights, Park View and points east now have an interactive forum to share their frustration with District officials.

The District Department of Transportation has put online a D.C. map that lets locals identify “improvement points” and include “ideas about how to make the area better,” the agency says. Residents can use the tool to highlight concerns with biking, traffic congestion and public transit, for example.

DDOT launched the map as part of its “Crosstown Multimodal Transportation Study,” which kicked off with a community meeting at Trinity University last night. The map so far has dozens of improvement points focused around Harvard, Columbia, Irving and Kenyon streets NW.

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by Andrew Ramonas — January 22, 2016 at 2:50 pm 2 Comments

Bus stop at 16th and V streets NW

The District Department of Transportation is looking to remove eight bus stops on 16th Street NW in an effort to speed up commutes for public transit users along the corridor.

Megan Kanagy, a DDOT transportation planner, announced yesterday at a community meeting that the agency has recommended the elimination of S1, S2 and S4 stops at:

  • Newton Street (southbound and northbound)
  • Lamont Street (southbound and northbound)
  • V Street (southbound and northbound)
  • Q Street (northbound)
  • L Street (northbound)

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by Andrew Ramonas — January 14, 2016 at 4:40 pm 0

7th Street NW (Photo via DDOT)

Traveling through the heart of Shaw is about to get a lot more difficult.

A major rehabilitation of 7th Street NW is set to begin Tuesday at 7 a.m., ushering in a year of traffic delays and temporary road and sidewalk closures.

From N Street to Florida Avenue, the road and the walkways around it will receive a face-lift intended to improve the streetscape and safety for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists along the corridor by January 2017.

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by Andrew Ramonas — January 5, 2016 at 1:00 pm 0

Under Thomas Circle (Photo via Google Maps)D.C. Department of Transportation surveyors aren’t done with their examination of the roadway under Thomas Circle NW yet, likely leaving drivers with “moderate delays” as they travel through the area in the coming days, according to the agency.

Crews are set to close single eastbound and westbound lanes of Massachusetts Avenue NW under the circle on an alternating basis from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., starting Thursday. The surveying work is expected to end the following Thursday, according to a DDOT representative.

Lane closures due to surveyors under Thomas Circle began on Dec. 14. But a DDOT announcement at the time said the work only was supposed to last about two weeks, depending on the weather.

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by Andrew Ramonas — December 16, 2015 at 2:50 pm 0

S4 bus on 16th Street

(Updated at 5 p.m.) The District Department of Transportation is moving ahead with a plan to add bus-only lanes to 16th Street NW in a bid to improve public transit along the corridor.

Megan Kanagy, a DDOT transportation planner, announced last night at a community meeting that the agency is in favor of bringing temporary bus lanes to the road at rush hour in an effort to fight the overcrowding and erratic service that often plague the S1, S2, S4 and S9 lines, according to local blog Greater Greater Washington.

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by Tim Regan — December 14, 2015 at 10:15 am 0

Under Thomas CircleDrivers, take note: District Department of Transportation (DDOT) workers will close lanes under Thomas Circle to conduct road surveys for two weeks starting today.

Workers will close eastbound and westbound lanes on Massachusetts Avenue NW under Thomas Circle between 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday for approximately two weeks, causing “moderate” delays, according to the department.

More details on the lane closures from DDOT:

Arrow boards and cones will be used to close the lanes. Only one lane will be closed at one time. These closures are necessary for DDOT to conduct survey work on Massachusetts Avenue, NW, under Thomas Circle.

Moderate delays are anticipated. Motorists are urged to stay alert and to use caution when traveling through the work zones.

Photo via Google Street View

by Andrew Ramonas — December 9, 2015 at 1:30 pm 3 Comments

Bus stop at 16th Street and Riggs Place (Photo via Google Maps)(Updated at 2:35 p.m.) Metrobus riders on 16th Street are slated to have one less place to get on and off the bus starting this weekend.

The southbound stop at 16th Street and Riggs Place NW is scheduled to disappear from the S1, S2 and S4 bus routes on Sunday, according to a Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority announcement made this week. Frequenters of the stop can use the nearby S Street and Corcoran Street stops instead.

WMATA also is slated to add a southbound stop downtown for the “Metro Extra” S9 bus on Sunday. The stop will serve K Street NW at 13th Street NW.

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by Tim Regan — December 8, 2015 at 12:00 pm 0

Georgia Ave and Florida nwA stretch of Georgia Avenue NW near Howard University might be a little more backed up than usual tonight, according to D.C.’s Department of Transportation.

Road crews will alternate between closing the southbound and northbound lanes of Georgia Avenue between Barry Place and Florida Avenue NW between 8 p.m. this evening and 5 a.m. tomorrow morning.

During the project, which began last night, crews will mill the existing asphalt as part of the Georgia Avenue NW Dedicated Bus Lane and Streetscape Project. The overall project is expected to be completed by May 2016, DDOT said.

Photo via Google Street View 

by Andrew Ramonas — December 3, 2015 at 10:35 am 4 Comments

S2 bus(Updated at 3:45 p.m.) Public transit improvement plans to bring bus-only lanes to 16th Street NW have received a significant boost.

Community leaders in Adams Morgan last night endorsed a proposal that would add temporary bus lanes to the road in an effort to fight the overcrowding and erratic service that often plague the S1, S2, S4 and S9 lines.

ANC 1C commissioners last night voted 6-1 in support of a resolution that encourages the District Department of Transportation to operate the special lanes from Arkansas Avenue to H Street NW during the morning and evening rush hours.

DDOT is studying plans that would let buses and cars share 16th Street as they do now, create bus lanes from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays or have rush-hour bus-only areas from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on weekdays.

“I think [bus service] is an absolutely important part of our life as a city,” said ANC 1C chairman Billy Simpson, who voted in support of the commission’s resolution.

In addition to the lanes, the legislation also called on DDOT to implement systems that would allow bus riders to pay their fares before boarding and would optimize traffic lights for buses in an attempt to make commuting smoother for passengers, among other recommendations.

JonMarc Buffa, who was the only ANC 1C member to vote against the resolution, tried to encourage his fellow commissioners to endorse a plan that would have asked DDOT to focus on off-board payment, traffic light optimization and other service improvement proposals, but not bus lanes. Beekman Place condo owners at 16th and Belmont streets NW and Buffa, whose district includes the area, in October urged DDOT not to remove lanes for normal car traffic, expressing concern for locals who aren’t bus commuters.

“It’s been clear that DDOT is in love with bus lanes,” Buffa said. “It’s the equivalent of their great white whale. They are Ahab.”

The agency is expected to complete its study of transit fixes and alternatives by January.

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