DDOT releases draft Livability Study recommendations

by Rachel Maisler

The DC Department of Transportation (DDOT) released draft recommendations for the Rock Creek East II Livability study, their proposal for traffic changes to the Petworth area and Ward 4. The goal of the study is to identify ways for residents and visitors in the Petworth area to commute safely, whether by car, bike or on foot. The guidelines include recommendations for road improvements, bike lanes, crosswalks and more. 

The draft recommendations focus on three areas: safety, accessibility, and green infrastructure. Along Arkansas, Illinois and Colorado Avenues, the study recommends adding curb extensions at most intersections from 16th Street to Georgia Avenue. Curb extensions (also called "bump-outs") would shorten the crossing distances for pedestrians and control vehicle speeds. To help prevent crashes along Illinois Avenue, for example, the study recommends speed tables and curb extensions, including near Sherman Circle where many collisions have occurred. In some cases, on-street parking may be sacrificed to implement the safety feature -- something that will impact residents more than the commuters driving through our area. 

In many areas that border the eastern edge of Rock Creek Park, the study recommends slow zones and modifying traffic movement patterns to make the communities friendlier for pedestrians and people with disabilities. Intersection redesigns are recommended throughout the neighborhood, including around Grant and Sherman Circles. (See the study for examples of recommended changes to the Circles -- eliminating one of the travel lanes in the Circles has been something Petworth News first wrote about last summer, particularly the updates that were first codified in DDOT's 2009 DDOT Pedestrian Safety Plan.

See related: Curbing the dangers of speeding cars - June 15, 2015

You can read DDOT's newly released recommendations and submit feedback online before August 29th.  Even better, you can talk to DDOT about the recommendations this weekend. They will have a booth set up to discuss the recommendations with residents this Saturday (August 13th) at the Petworth Community Market on 9th Street & Upshur and 14th & Kennedy Farmers Market. Check out the Petworth News Community Calendar for dates and times. A final public meeting on the recommendations will be held at the Petworth Library on September 8th. 

Related article:
 - ANC 4C prematurely votes against the DDOT Livability Survey (Aug 11, 2016)

See prior coverage of pedestrian safety in Grant Circle:
 - Curbing the dangers of speeding cars (June 15, 2015)
 - Painting safety into Grant Circle (June 29, 2015)
 - Grant circle to get new paint for increased safety (July 13, 2015)
 - Car ends up in Grant Circle (August 10, 2015)
 - Will new lane markings in Grant Circle increase pedestrian safety? (Sept. 23, 2015)
 - Grant Circle gets its stripes (Sept 30, 2015)

Rachel Maisler

Note from Drew: 

I'm pleased as punch to welcome new writer Rachel Maisler to Petworth News. Rachel also came up with the idea for and manages the Community Calendar

Rachel Maisler

Rachel joined Petworth News first as the editor for the Community Calendar, and then against her better judgement, agreed to become a contributing writer to the blog in August 2016.

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