Tag Archives: Glover Park

ANC Round-Up: Cars ≠ People Edition

Last night the ANC met for their May session. Unfortunately, as is often the case, a lot of the agenda was built upon the assumption that cars and people are the same thing.

Where this came into focus was during the discussions over street closures in connection with various races. Last night the races at issue were the Nations Triathlon, the Best Buddies Challenge Bicycle Ride, Bike DC, and the Marine Corps Marathon. Each of these events require a few streets in Georgetown to be closed for a few hours on their respective Sunday mornings.

Over the last couple years, the ANC has expressed increasing frustration over the proliferation of events calling for street closures in Georgetown. The heart of these complaints is that street closures, particularly those affecting lower Georgetown, “maroon” people in their homes during the closure. They’re “trapped”. They “can’t get out”.

These street closures can be an inconvenience, GM would just like to remind the ANC that nobody gets “trapped” by street closures, only cars do. People can still leave. They can walk a few blocks and catch a bus or a cab. Or they can just walk to the over 500 stores and restaurants right here in Georgetown. The point is that people and cars are not the same thing.

For the record, each event was approved by the ANC. They badgered a few of the applicants on whether they were charitable “enough”, but with the impacts so slight, the ANC didn’t hold anyone up over it.

Glover Park Streetscape Improvements

As discussed at an ANC meeting last November, Glover Park is currently undergoing a streetscape improvement project that will, among other things, widen sidewalks and reduce Wisconsin Ave. from six lanes to five lanes. This project has generated some anxiety among people who fear the reduction in lanes will lead to an increase in “cut through” traffic on 37th St.

The ANC decided not to object to the project last November, but requested that DDOT perform a traffic count before and after the changes to measure the effect on cut through traffic. Last night the ANC found, however, that the requested traffic count was not performed where they wanted it performed and, more damning from the ANC’s perspective, the “base” count was performed after construction started on Wisconsin. This, the ANC argued, would inflate the traffic count on 37th St. since people would already be avoiding Wisconsin Ave. traffic. Thus when the “after” number is compared to the base number, any increase in cut through from pre-construction numbers would be covered up. Paul Hoffman from DDOT responded to the criticism and stated that they would try to again to get a “base” number during a period of time without any lane closures.

The problem GM sees in this back-and-forth is this: so what if there is an increase in cut-through traffic? Right now Wisconsin Ave. between W Pl. and 34th is a serious hazard to pedestrians. The crosswalks at 35th and Wisconsin are death traps. Have you ever crossed Wisconsin at this intersection? You are seriously risking your life doing so. Even just crossing 35th along the west side of Wisconsin is incredibly dangerous. These conditions must be improved. If a slight increase in cut through traffic is the cost of eliminating the clear and present danger created by the current conditions, that is a cost we have to be willing to pay. Yes increased cut through traffic can create its own hazards, but they’re less than the hazards on Wisconsin right now, and they can be dealt with with other measures such as speed cameras or bulb-outs. Continue reading

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Glover Park Streetscape Improvements Should be Carried On to Georgetown

As discussed here back in November, Glover Park is about to undertake a significant transportation project to improve its streetscape and traffic management. The project will do many things. On the most superficial level, it will beautify the sidewalks by widening them and installing new Washington Globe streetlights.

But more fundamentally, the project will take the stretch of Wisconsin Ave. and adjust how traffic flows. Right now, through most of Glover Park there are six traffic lanes, two of which are for parking, the other four for moving traffic. The change will reduce the overall lanes to (essentially) five lanes. Two lanes for parking (except during rush hour), two lanes for moving traffic, and one lane at each intersection for turning traffic.

These changes will be great. While it is true that it means only one north-south travel lane in each direction during non-rush hour times, the reality is that with cars waiting to turn left, there is often only one travel lane as it is. This will smooth out the flow of traffic since you’ll no longer get stuck behind a car turning left when you want to go straight. Continue reading

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ANC Round Up: Short Edition

Photo by ad454.

The ANC met for the final time in 2011 on Monday night (sorry for the delay in the report, but yesterday GM wanted to pump the CAG meeting). The agenda was short and the proceedings efficient, so there’s really not much to report, but here goes.

Glover Park

The biggest item on the agenda was the issue of Glover Park’s planned streetscape improvements. Part of those improvements call for lane reconfiguration, which frightens a lot of people. The fear is that by limiting lanes on Wisconsin Ave., the drivers will take the side streets instead.

As GM reported on Monday, the ANC is concerned about this. Glover Park, however, didn’t take too kindly to the possibility that ANC2E might derail the project. So Chair of the Glover Park ANC, Brian Cohen, showed up at the Georgetown ANC meeting to testify in favor of the changes and to argue that it would not negatively affect Georgetown (DDOT representatives were also at hand to make the same case, but the bureaucratese they used didn’t do a great job selling the project).

In the end the ANC (the Georgetown one, that is) passed a motion simply asking DDOT to keep in mind the possible effects this project could have on Georgetown and to include Georgetown in the discussions going forward. For the record, GM predicted Monday that Commissioner Bill Starrells wanted to “derail” the project; in fairness GM must report that Starrells since assured GM that he never intended to try to stop the project, and just wanted to air his concerns about the project. Continue reading

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ANC Preview: Sticking Their Nose Into Glover Park’s Business Edition

Tonight ANC2E will meet for the final time in 2011. And the most important item on the agenda doesn’t even directly relate to Georgetown.

As you may have read in the Current, Glover Park has worked with DDOT to reconfigure Wisconsin Ave. through that neighborhood. These changes came in response to two recent pedestrian fatalities and a serious injury, all of which have come on the stretch of Wisconsin Ave. through Glover Park. And in particular, the stretch of Wisconsin south of W Pl. is very dangerous to pedestrians because it is unnecessarily wide, which encourages cars to drive unnecessary fast, and it has several crosswalks without crossing lights. While increased enforcement can make a minor difference in driver behavior, the most effective way to change drivers’ behavior is to change the road. This is the approach that Glover Park’s leaders took.

So they worked with DDOT to develop a plan to widen the sidewalks (which are way too narrow) and limit Wisconsin Ave. to one lane in each direction. Parking would be limited during rush hour to provide an extra traffic lane during those hours. (Update: The changes are even better. They’ll include a traffic median and some left turn lanes. Here are the plans: http://anc3b.org/issues/roadway-streetscape-pedestrian-safety/) These are changes that have been public and long discussed among Glover Park residents and leaders, and its perfectly reasonable for Glover Park to take these measures in response to the clear and present hazard created by the current situation. Continue reading

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The Morning Metropolitan

Photo by csuspect.

Good morning Georgetown, here’s the latest:

  • DCist weighs in on the West Heating Plant sale.
  • Glover Park is really fighting hard against the proposed changes to the D1 and D2 bus routes. The changes wouldn’t hit Georgetown as hard since reductions in the D1 service would be offset by increases in the D6 service.

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The Morning Metropolitan

Good morning Georgetown, here’s the latest:

Photo of the Potomac by Flickr user Singlecupofcoffee used under a Creative Commons license.

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The Morning Metropolitan

Good Monday morning Georgetown, hope you enjoyed the beautiful weather this weekend. Here’s the latest:

  • Georgetown Cupcake is expanding to Bethesda. Will its cache survive attempts to go chain? We’ll see…
  • More Nordic jazz this week on the roof of the Swedish Embassy. GM will be there Wednesday night, if not just for the amazing views.
  • GM missed this on Friday, but Saturday marked the first Glover Park-Burleith Farmers Market in front of Hardy Middle School and across from the Social Safeway (construction). This of course is also the site of the Georgetown Flea Market. So is the lot in Georgetown? Burleith? Glover Park? Who cares, they’re both great things to have around. (If you must know, the answer is Georgetown)
Photo by Flickr user Sam Ruhaat used under a Creative Commons license.

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