For several years now, the District has been working on plans to improve transportation around the South Capitol Street crossing of the Anacostia River. The project team has analyzed both the Frederick Douglass Bridge itself and connections into neighborhoods on each side of the river. Much of the Capitol Riverfront area is included, as is a large portion of Anacostia--including the Anacostia Metro and the proposed streetcar corridor along Firth Sterling Ave.
The project is a large one, spanning the river and Wards 6 and 8 and slated to cost in excess of $800M. Yet, in this enormous proposal:
- Not a single inch of new bicycle lanes is created.
- Not a single inch of cycletrack or dedicated bicycle space is proposed.
- Of the three multi-use paths proposed in the areas near the new bridge, two were removed after the comment period for the draft alternatives was completed.
- Subpar bicycling connections are identified, yet left without improvement.
- Complex traffic structures (e.g. a traffic oval with multiple traffic lanes and a multi-acre interior) are proposed with no accommodation for cyclists shown.
While the new bridge integrates bicycle and pedestrian traffic quite well, the remainder of the study area is uninclusive of cylists, leaving opportunities to connect neighborhoods and make cycling more safe and accessible unrealized.
Please take a moment to send an email to the project team demanding that bicycle transportation facilities be better integrated into this plan!
A transportation infrastructure plan of this scope can be a once-in-a-generation event, and we cannot afford to allow bicyclists to be left out of the mix. We cannot be satisfied by a path on a bridge span when connections to that bridge, through our neighborhoods, are lacking. We cannot allow this project to move forward without comment when facilities, originally included in each build alternative, are yanked from the final proposal without justification.
WABA's full analysis and comments can be found here.
Please take a moment to support stronger bicycle facilities by CLICKING HERE to send an email demanding improvements to the South Capitol Street plan.