Tag Archives: Traffic

The Morning Metropolitan

Photo by M.V. Jantzen.

Good morning Georgetown, here’s the latest:

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Georgetown on a Saturday

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Last week, GM bought a new camera. This one’s got video capabilities, so he took it out for a spin last weekend. One of the features is the gimmicky faux-tilt shift effects, which makes the image look like a miniature, and speeds it up to enhance the ant-like effect. Like HDR, it’s very easy to overuse. But it’s fun for a little bit.

Anyway, enjoy scenes of a Georgetown Saturday afternoon set to the sweet sounds of the Dave Brubeck Quartet.

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Signs Giving a Mixed Message on Canal Rd.

When you approach Georgetown from the west on Canal Rd., you’re faced with a couple of options. You can stay on Canal as it becomes M St. and enter Georgetown. You can, of course, hang a right onto the Key Bridge and head over to Virginia. And, finally, you can take a right on to the Whitehurst Freeway and quickly skirt around Georgetown to Foggy Bottom, where you can continue on to K St. or take the E St. Expressway.

So if your ultimate destination is downtown, not Georgetown, the best choice is normally the Whitehurst. And the first signs you see as you approach Georgetown tell you as much:

The problem is that shortly after these signs, you’re presented with another set of signs that sure seem to be telling drivers to stay on M St. if they’re heading downtown: Continue reading

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The Morning Metropolitan

M St. shop window by DBKing.

Good morning Georgetown, here’s the latest:

  • Drivers can now turn left onto Wisconsin from eastbound M St. This should lessen the congestion on some of the side streets used by drivers to circumvent the old no-left-turn prohibition.
  • Remember, mayoral debate at Tony and Joe’s this Friday.

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Boy’s Death Spurs Debate Over Traffic Safety

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The boy that was struck by a woman driving her car near the intersection of Wisconsin and 33rd St. died yesterday. This has lead at least one news source to question whether that intersection is safe without traffic lights or stop signs.

The question of who is more at fault for the tragedy has ┬ánot been publicly answered. WJLA has eye witness reports that the child ran into the street and was not crossing at the crosswalk. A woman claims, however, that the driver wasn’t paying attention and was using her cellphone, although it’s not clear whether this source saw the accident first-hand. Continue reading

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Why Not: Shut Down M St. on Weekends?

Traffic Jam on M St. by M.V. Jantzen.

Today for his occasional “Why Not” series, GM turns to the ugliness that is M St. on a summer weekend. So he asks: Why not shut down M St.?

It’s an idea GM thinks about every time he sees gridlock on M St. There is a concept called a traffic tipping point. At the center of this concept is the observation that once the numbers of travelers passes a certain threshold, the entire system seizes up. Thus, a very small increase in the number of cars on an already crowded road can result in huge delays due to congestion. (The opposite has also been observed: a small reduction in vehicles on a gridlocked road can result in significant reductions in delays).

Once it’s warm, on every Saturday by about 2:00 PM, a traffic tipping point is passed on M St. Traffic comes to a standstill. It can take 20 minutes, if not longer, to get from one end of Georgetown to the other.

There has got to be a better way. Continue reading

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The Morning Metropolitan

Good morning Georgetown, here’s the latest:

  • Dolley Madison family day tomorrow 10 to 2 at Dumbarton House. Come celebrate Dolley’s escape from the White House (Dumbarton House was her first stop) with games and cake.
  • After celebrating the War of 1812, come over and let the National Parks Service tell you about Georgetown during the Civil War. It’s at 12:15 at the C & O Canal at Thomas Jefferson St.
  • A resident suggested to the Georgetown listserv that DDOT install speed bumps next to Montrose Park. GM thinks people speed too much there (which is to say they speed at all), but that other traffic calming measures are more effective (such as resurfacing the road with something rougher than asphalt). What do you think?
Photo by Flickr user Laura Padgett used under Creative Commons.

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