Photo by AJfroggie.
Monday night, DDOT finally began construction of the long awaited separated bicycle lanes (or “cycletracks”) on L St. from the West End to downtown. This will hopefully precede another lane to be installed on M St. from 29th to Thomas Circle. This will bring improved biking facilities right to the threshold of Georgetown, but not through it. Will this mean that Georgetown will miss out?
For those unfamiliar with these types of bike lanes, the parking lane is moved one lane away from the curb, and the bike lane is installed with barriers between the parking lane and the curb. Studies have shown how dedicated lanes like these can cut cycling injuries by up to a half. And when lanes like these have been installed on 15th St. and Pennsylvania Ave., bike traffic along those routes skyrocketed while the impact to car traffic has been negligible.
The new lanes on L and M will provide a very much needed east-west route for bikers. However for Georgetown bikers, the lanes are tantalizingly close, but not close enough.
The L St. lane will travel eastbound from 25th (by Trader Joe’s). That means that if someone wants to bike from Georgetown to the lane, they will probably have to travel on M St.and Pennsylvania Ave.
GM is a confident city biker, but even he gets seriously unnerved trying to ride on M St. and Pennsylvania Ave. This gap between the heart of Georgetown and safe separated bike lanes will discourage people from riding bikes to Georgetown. But what can we do about it? Continue reading
Photo by Elly Blue.
As part of an occasional series, GM asks “Why Not?“. Today he asks: why not build some bike lanes in Georgetown?
For those not familiar with them, bike lanes are special lanes painted on roads the designate a space on the road just for bikes. In DC they generally take the space between the travel lane and the parking lane. Compliance with the lanes is spotty. And there is a passionate debate among bikers as to whether bike lanes are even better for bikers in the first place, although one study suggests that at the very least bike lanes encourage more biking.
As part of its Bicycle Master Plan, the city hopes to build 50 miles of bike lanes across the city by 2010, and 100 by 2015. As of this summer, they had already reached somewhere around 37 miles, so these goals seem obtainable. But what about Georgetown?
As reported here, the city is planning to build two bike lanes in Georgetown: on 34th and 33rd 35th. In fact, these lanes are currently being painted and should be ready within weeks. But these lanes are north-south and do not do much to tie Georgetown in with the rest of the city’s bike network. Why not build east-west routes that connect Georgetown to that network?
But what are the candidates?
Filed under Bikes, Why Not
In just over two year’s time, several pockets of Georgetown will have made significant changes from today. That was the theme of last night’s ANC meeting. The Future. Which is an odd theme for a historic district, but there you go.
The heart of last night’s meeting revolved around three projects that will probably seem to take an eternity to finish, but once done will hopefully be great additions to the neighborhood. These are the trolley tracks on O and P, and the conversion of two historic buildings into residential units: the Hurt Home and the Georgetown Post Office. Continue reading