DDOT Hosts Pop-Up Events to Improve Pedestrian Experience in “Downtown West”

Downtown West Transportation Study

The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) invites the community to three “pop-up style” public engagement events on Thursday, October 20, 2016 from 8am to 6pm to view and provide feedback on draft alternatives for the Downtown West Transportation Planning Study. The rain date is Thursday, October 27.

WHAT: Downtown West Transportation Planning Study Public Engagement Events
WHEN: Thursday, October 20, 2016, 8 am to 6 pm
WHERE: 8 am to 10 am, Southeast corner of Pennsylvania Ave., NW & 22nd St., NW
11 am to 2 pm, Farmers Market on the 800 block of Vermont Avenue NW
4 pm to 6 pm, Northwest corner of Pennsylvania Ave. NW & 19th St., NW

The Downtown West Study aims to improve east-west travel for cyclists, pedestrians and buses. The study area includes the following:

Pennsylvania Avenue NW between 17th Street and Washington Circle
H and I Streets NW between New York Avenue and Pennsylvania Avenue

Downtown West study areaThe project will include the development of alternatives for a separated bicycle lane and pedestrian improvements on Pennsylvania Avenue NW and evaluation of a contraflow bus lane on H Street NW.

TRANSIT: Metrorail: Foggy Bottom, Farragut West or McPherson Square stations.

Visit the study’s website for more information. Materials from the events will be made available on the DDOT website at the meeting’s conclusion.

If you need special accommodations or language assistance services (translation or interpretation), contact Megan Kanagy at (202) 671-1598 or megan.kanagy@dc.gov by October 13. These services will be provided free of charge.

DC Fixes Contributory Negligence Law!

All Walks DC and the Washington Area Bicyclist Association advocating for the Contributory Negligence law to be fixed.

All Walks DC and the Washington Area Bicyclist Association advocating for the law to be fixed.


On October 4, Mayor Muriel Bowser signed a bill that would change DC law to allow a pedestrian or bicyclist injured in a crash to recover damages so long as they are less than 50 percent at fault for the crash. Before the law was changed, the District was one of five jurisdictions in the country that prohibited any recovery by a pedestrian or bicyclist injured in a crash if they had any degree of fault, even if the driver was at greater fault.

The other states still following a so-called contributory negligence standard are Alabama, North Carolina, and the District’s neighbors Virginia and Maryland.

The bill, known as the Motor Vehicle Collision Recovery Act  (B21-0004), was sponsored by Councilmembers Mary Cheh, Charles Allen, Anita Bonds, Jack Evans, and David Grosso. It passed the DC Council on September 20 by a unanimous vote.

According to the District’s Department of Transportation, on average, 265 bicycle and 600 pedestrian crashes are reported to the Metropolitan Police Department each year.

Pedestrian safety and bicycling advocates in DC have worked since 2014, when another version of the bill was pending, to enact the legislation. Insurance groups and AAA-Atlantic opposed the bills, arguing that they would increase auto insurance premiums.

The measure now goes to the U.S. Congress for a thirty-day review period. A copy of the signed bill is available here.

More information about the bill is available here.

Ward 7 Livability Study Launches This Week

Far Southeast Livability StudyDDOT is launching the Far Southeast III Livability Study this week. The study covers part of Ward 7, bordered by the Anacostia to the west, East Capitol Street to the north, Eastern Avenue to the east, and Massachusetts Avenue to the south. This is a great opportunity to tell DDOT that you want better walkability in Ward 7, including safer pedestrian crossings, lower speeds, and better bus stops.

The details:

Saturday, June 25, 2016
10:30am to 1:00pm
Plummer Elementary School
4601 Texas Avenue SE

See DDOT for more information.

Far Southeast III study areaLook for us at these community meetings, and donate to All Walks DC now to fund our ongoing advocacy on behalf of pedestrians!

Public Meetings to Improve the Pedestrian Experience in “Downtown West”

Downtown West Transportation Planning StudyThis week DDOT is launching a study to improve the pedestrian experience downtown. Stop by the MLK library Wednesday to voice your support for improvements to the streetscape on Pennsylvania Avenue and elsewhere.

The details:

Wednesday, June 15, 2016
6pm to 8pm
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library
Room A-5
901 G Street NW

See DDOT for more information on the study.

Your Input Needed at the Crosstown Multimodal Study This Week!

Crosstown Multimodal Transportation StudyThis week, DDOT will host several public meetings related to the Crosstown Multimodal Transportation Study, an effort to expand east-west travel options between Brookland and Columbia Heights. The plans propose improvements for people who walk, bicycle, or use transit to travel between NE and NW. Some of the proposals include opening up the street grid in Park View, streamlining bus routes through the Washington Hospital Center campus, removing the dangerous cloverleaf intersections where North Capitol Street crosses Irving Street, and setting aside designated space for bicycles and buses.

Please stop by and tell DDOT you want:

  • The cloverleaf intersections at North Capitol Street and Irving Street turned into safe, signalized crosswalks.
  • The street grid opened up for better pedestrian movement around Park View.
  • Separate, inviting spaces for people walking versus biking.
  • Road diets on Michigan Avenue and Irving Street.
  • Irving Street turned from a highway-style wasteland into a vibrant city street.

For more information about the study, you can visit the study website at www.dccrosstownstudy.com or contact DDOT Project Manager, Katherine Youngbluth, at katherine.youngbluth@dc.gov or (202) 645-8625.

The public events are as follows:

Public Workshop #3
Thursday, June 9, 2016
Open House from 6:00pm to 8:00pm
Presentation at 6:30pm
Trinity University – Main Hall
(O’Connor Auditorium – 125 Michigan Avenue NE, Washington, DC 20017)

Simultaneous Public Engagement Events at Two Locations
Saturday, June 11, 2016
10:00am – 1:00pm

Location #1: Brookland
Brookland’s Monroe Street Farmers Market
(716 Monroe Street NE, Washington, DC 20017)

Location #2: Columbia Heights
Columbia Heights Metro Station – West Side
(3030 14th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009)

Google Patents Flypaper to Adhere Pedestrians to the Cars That Hit Them

Streetsblog recently reported that Google, which is developing self-driving cars, has patented a “flypaper or double-sided duct tape”-like technology to stick pedestrians to the cars that hit them, hoping this will minimize injuries. When people walking are struck by people driving cars, they are sometimes injured further by then striking the pavement or being driven over by the cars. Google’s technology would instead adhere them to the cars following the initial impact.Google's fly paper Seems like there’s a more obvious way to prevent pedestrian injuries—designing streets to keep automobile speeds down and minimize dangerous interactions between cars and people walking.

Streetsblog’s Angie Schmitt writes:

A much more important question for the impending autonomous car future is how these systems will minimize the potential for collisions with pedestrians in the first place. A fleet of robocars won’t need flypaper if they can’t exceed, say, 15 mph while operating on crowded city streets.

As technology changes in ways that affect the safety of people walking, you want a strong voice speaking up for your concerns in DC. Donate to All Walks DC now to fund our ongoing advocacy on behalf of pedestrians!