Just hours after taking the above photo of the idyllic southern Massachusetts coastline, GM found himself racing back to Washington in order to attend the June ANC meeting. This fact has no bearing on the meeting itself, but GM just felt you ought to know what sacrifices he makes to keep you informed.
That said, the ANC meeting last night was jam packed and more than justified GM’s sacrifice. Unfortunately, it ran rather long so GM is going to have to keep it short in order to avoid falling asleep at the wheel.
DDOT presented plans for the streetcar and how those plans would affect Georgetown. In DDOT’s ambitious 37 mile plan, the agency calls for a cross-town route to come into Georgetown along K St.
The ANC is generally supportive of the plans but is nervous about how the streetcar could affect traffic, parking, and the viewshed. The overall message from the DDOT representative is that it is way too early to really say what DDOT is going to decide for Georgetown, but he also added that it is likely that there will not be dedicated lanes and that no overhead wire will be used in Georgeown.
On that last point, though, the DDOT representative was a bit ambivalent. He showed up with an actual cross-sections of the proposed 3/8th inch overhead wire along with several images of what that wire would look like in action. He also discussed the council’s proposal to authorize overhead wires along H St. NE (areas outside of the L’Enfant Plan and Georgetown allow overhead wires already). You could argue that he was trying to soften up Georgetown to accept overhead wires, at least temporarily.
And surprisingly enough, it looks like the ANC may go along with that. They unanimously adopted a resolution that was split into two parts. The first part essentially said that the ANC supports streetcars on K St. so long as there are no dedicated lanes, no parking was removed, and any overhead wires are approved by the Commission of Fine Arts (there was also a request to consider what effect the possible removal of the Whitehurst would have on those plans).
Secondly, the ANC would not object to streetcars on Wisconsin Ave. (or M St., which was added to the resolution after the DDOT rep mentioned that streetcars could end up coming into Georgetown by M St. not k St.) again so long as there are no dedicated lanes and no removal of parking. For Wisconsin and M, however, the ANC put its foot down and said absolutely no overhead wires.
All in all, it was a good resolution for supporters of streetcars in and through Georgetown. Continue reading