Category Archives: Transportation

NEWS: ANC’s Transportation Committee Recommends Three Proposals to Keep Neighborhood Moving Safely and Efficiently

The Dupont Circle ANC’s Transportation and Public Infrastructure Committee has been hard at work the last several months on several projects intended to help keep our neighborhood safe and moving efficiently. This Wednesday, the committee will present three of those projects to the ANC and seek their support. We hope you can join us at 7pm at the Brookings Institution on November 12th to discuss the following resolutions:

  • Traffic signals on 60 second cycles in residential areas might not be the most efficient or safe way to control an intersection. Led by new member David Alpert, the committee has recognized potentially inefficient traffic signals in residential areas and requested a study of their appropriateness for the neighborhood. There are several options for remedy, including elimination of traffic signals or a simple change to their timing.

 

  • The committee, led by Susan Volman and Rudi Riet have audited the utility and appropriateness of signage along the 15th Street Cycle Track and recommended comprehensive changes to signage for bikers, motor vehicles and pedestrians. Inconsistent, confusing and poorly placed signage along 15th Street can lead to dangerous interactions among all road users. The Committee’s audit (including pictures!) resulted in several recommendations for infrastructure changes that bring our cycle tracks in line with international standards and better prepare users for potential hazards. The Committee recommends that by Spring 2015, DDOT replace the signage of the 15th Street cycle track to:
    • Ensure the intended audience for each type of sign is clear and consistent
    • Simplify and make uniform all signs
    • Place signs at optimal height and location for visibility by their intended audience; and
    • Add more signs to inform cyclists and motorists about the existence of the cycle track and lane layout.
  • The committee recommends enthusiastic support for the DC Circulator plans for expansion through Dupont Circle to Howard University and is asking for further opportunities to provide input. The committee supports any and all additional public transit options in our neighborhood and had previously recommended a new Circulator route from the National Mall to U Street.

The full ANC agenda for this Wednesday is available here.

NEWS: TPI Committee Meeting Minutes, June 5

ANC2B Transportation and Public Infrastructure Committee
Thursday, June 5, 2014 – 7:00 p.m.
Dupont Circle Resource Center (9 Dupont Circle NW)

Meeting Minutes

1. Introductions and review of scope of goals for the TPI Committee

In attendance:

Tom Hay
Daniel Warwick
Brian Knudsen
David Suls
Comm. Mike Feldstein (2B01)
Comm. Noah Smith (2B09)
Moira McCauley
Comm. Will Stephens (2B08)
Tom Lipinsky (Office of CM Evans)
James Nozar
Rudi Riet
Susan Volman
Sarah Moulton
Comm. Mike Silverstein (2B06)
Comm. Abigail Nichols (2B05)
Mike Brennan

Committee Chair Noah Smith (2B09) opened the meeting with a review and update of the scope and role of the committee:

-Communicate with the Dupont Circle community and serve as a resource for neighbors on matters related to transportation and the public infrastructure. -Coordinate with other ANCs -overlap of issues with neighboring ANCs is important to analyze so we can compare successes and failures.

-Citywide transportation and infrastructure issues – upcoming opportunity to comment on legislation – formulate a statement to contribute.

2. Update on progress of goals and assignments

Walking tours of individual SMDs so show DDOT deficiencies in pedestrian safety, parking and tree boxes-contacts have been made and will begin with 2B08 and Will Stephens.

***
DDOT signage along 15th street cycle track is inconsistent and confusing -Contact has been made with DDOT. Discussed need for consistent signage. Many of the new enhancements across the city are in “beta” or testing mode, so permanent solutions are few and far between. Issues may be addressed once focus moves away from building new cycle tracks to actually maintaining the existing ones. Committee will look at national and international standards for signage. Uniformity and simplicity are key.

***
Rudi Riet and Kishan Putta -Repainting of R and Q cycle tracks. -Contact has been made at DDOT about need for painting. DDOT agreed and said they would address. Need to track progress.

***
Kishan Putta -16th street bus lane -Majority of DC Council have made statements in support. Feasibility study is next step and would address pedestrian safety.

***
Mike Silverstein -Circulator advocacy -There have been public outreach events. SW Waterfront and Shaw / Dupont are being considered as part of new routes. National Mall route is also being considered with funding coming from parking fees around the Mall. Either way, it looks like Dupont will get a new route through the neighborhood.

***
David Suls -Identify process to expand on street recycling -No specific process outside of a Business Improvement District (BID) to get recycling bins. Challenge may be who will be responsible for emptying the cans. Noah Smith will assist in getting contact at DPW.

***
Mike Silverstein -WMATA -Dupont North Metro stop -allowing ANC to water trees on Metro plaza. Bring proposal to next meeting. Added to agenda for July.

4. Discussion on the Residential Parking Program (RPP) for 1000 Block of 16th Street, NW (2B05)

Residents of the 1000 block of 16th Street (2B05) want to be eligible to participate in the residential parking program (RPP) and receive RPP passes. Mike Brennan of the Presidential Coop in the 1000 block of 16th Street NW explained that his building is not part of the RPP program. He was told by DDOT that he needs to present a petition to the ANC for inclusion.

Noah Smith explained that in the RPP, buildings are tied to whether there is restricted parking on your block. Intent is not to change any of the parking spaces. There are no residential spots on the block. Noah suggested the ANC have more discussion and find out why the building was not included and the implications before endorsing the plan. The ANC offered to help the residents talk to the right people at DDOT to have their questions answered.

UPDATE: DDOT responded that the block is zoned commercial is not RPP eligible.

5. Draft Parking Statements

The committee spent considerable time defining the actual issues associate with parking in our neighborhood. This exercise is meant to develop clear and impactful goals for the committee to pursue related to parking this year. For each of the following issues, the committee will develop realistic options to address the concerns and present them to the community for guidance.

Visitor Parking Program (Will / Daniel / Noah)

Residents have difficulty securing parking privileges for recurring visitors, such as home health aides, contractors, and nannies.

Residential Parking Issues (Daniel)

Residents have difficulty finding parking within a reasonable distance of their homes.

Under Utilized Parking (Susan / Rudi)

There are parking spaces, both public and private, in our neighborhood that are underutilized. This could be due to a lack of awareness of private parking options, unnecessary restrictions in place, or poor utilization of multi-use parking, among other reasons.

Business Patrons (Moira)

Businesses often have difficulty guaranteeing parking availability for their patrons.

Next meeting scheduled for Wednesday, June 25, at 7pm at the Dupont Circle Resource Center

 

NEWS: Proposed Resolution Affirming Support for Conn Ave Underpass Project

This resolution will be proposed at the ANC’s May 19th special meeting:

Resolution affirming support of covering Dupont underpass

WHEREAS, in June 2010, the Commission passed a resolution asking the District (including the Office of Planning and the Department of Transportation) to study the feasibility of covering the Connecticut Avenue underpass north of Dupont Circle with park space;

WHEREAS, for many years, residents and other stakeholders in Dupont Circle have advocated for such a project, which would have an extremely positive impact on the community and take advantage of an underutilized piece of public space;

WHEREAS, over the past two years, an ad hoc group of Commissioners, business community representatives, and representatives from the Office of Planning, the Department of Transportation, and the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhood Engagement have held a series of productive meetings to develop the project more concretely;

WHEREAS, the working group has developed an initial rendering of the park space (designed by a local volunteer architect) and an initial budget estimate for the work (developed by a local construction contracting company);

WHEREAS, the proposed project would cover the 1500 block of Connecticut Ave NW (between the Circle and Q Street NW) and a portion of the 1600 block of Connecticut Ave NW (just north of Q Street NW);

WHEREAS, Ward 2 Council Member Jack Evans has endorsed the project at budget town hall meetings and other public fora and has requested that it be added to the capital improvement budget for FY 2015;

Therefore, be it resolved that ANC 2B continues its support for the Dupont Circle Underpass Project;

Be it further resolved that ANC 2B recommends that the City Council fully fund the project by allocating sufficient funds in Fiscal Year 2015 to allow for the project to move forward;

Be it further resolved that Commissioners Mike Feldstein (Mike.feldstein@dupontcircleanc.net) and Will Stephens (will.stephens@dupontcircleanc.net) be the Commission’s designated representatives in this matter, and that the matter be delegated to the Commission’s Transportation and Public Infrastructure Committee for further follow-up and development.

NEWS: Transportation Committee Sets Goals for 2014

(This post is co-located at my ANC2B09 blog)

On April 23rd, the Transportation and Public Infrastructure Committee met for the first time. Created in March by ANC2B, the committee helps to coordinate many of the ongoing transportation, traffic, and infrastructure projects in our neighborhood and helps make real improvements to our community.

The committee membership is fantastic and includes five commissioners and five residents, all passionate about transportation and our neighborhood infrastructure.

At our first meeting, we set short- and long-term goals for the year that we believe are achievable and will have a significant positive impact in our neighborhood.

TPI Goals

Click to read our 2014 committee goals

Detailed minutes, which include timeframes for the above goals, can be downloaded here: TPI Committee Meeting Minutes 4-23-14

The committee is also a forum and a resource for anyone in the neighborhood. We encourage you to bring issues to our monthly meetings or to contact us directly. You can contact the committee by emailing TPI@dupontcircleanc.net or contact me, the committee chair, at noah.smith@dupontcircleanc.net.

 

BLOG: Notes on April 2014 Pedestrian Advisory Council Meeting

[Cross-posted at www.willstephensanc.com]

The Pedestrian Advisory Council (PAC) met in April 2014 for committee-level discussions.  (The PAC trades off every other month between full PAC meetings and committee meetings.  For a report on my first full PAC meeting as Ward 2 representative in March 2014, find a prior blog post here.)

This was my first committee meeting, and I joined the “Walking Environment Committee.”  Our special guest was Earl Eutsler (earl.eutsler@dc.gov) from DDOT’s Urban Forestry Administration (UFA), to talk about the interplay between the walking environment, the tree canopy in DC, and UFA’s management of street and island trees.

The most useful and interesting discussion points were as follows:

  • Getting Repairs Done:  Earl advised that using the 3-1-1 system is the best way to get repairs into the queue for action by UFA.  Other DDOT staff confirmed that UFA in particular makes good use of the 3-1-1 system.
  • Tree canopy:  UFA manages about 10% of the total DC tree canopy, with National Parks, other Federal agencies, the Department of Parks & Recreation, and private space accounting for the remainder.  The District has a goal to reach 40% tree canopy coverage within the next 10-15 years.  Earl noted that all pavement, including sidewalks and streets, last longer with greater tree canopy coverage, because of the shade provided.
  • Flexi-pave: DDOT is now using a special porous material for paving around street trees called Flexi-pave.  This is meant to replace and improve upon the “rubber sidewalk” squares that they previously installed in places like 17th Street, which buckles after only a couple of years.  If there are places with rubber sidewalk buckling, residents should note this in the 3-1-1 system as a “tree inspection request,” and these areas will be prioritized for Flexi-pave installation (if they are not already in the system).
  • Mapping:  UFA has comprehensive, interactive maps of street trees, including planned replacement and planting spots, on the agency website.
  • UFA Representatives: The UFA representatives for our area are “Team 2” and include Carlson Klapthor (carlson.klapthor@dc.gov, mostly north of the Circle) and Simoun Banua (simoun.banue@dc.gov, mostly south of the Circle).