DDOT Planning to Open the 3600 Block of Georgia to Parking — Meters to be Installed

According to recent listserv chatter, the 3600 block of Georgia will soon be opened up to parking

According to email chatter on the MPD-4D listserv, the section of the 3600 block of Georgia Avenue directly across from CVS will be opened up for parking. Signage on the east side of Georgia Avenue here currently states that there is no parking. Apparently the no parking zone had more to do with the former bus stop on this block than anything else. Now that the bus stop has moved a block north (in front of the Metro station), the inability to park on this block has been deemed an oversight needing correction.

While I don’t know when the signs will be removed, or when parking meters will be installed, I have contacted DDOT for additional details. I certainly agree that additional parking in the area is needed. However, I do have a few safety concerns I’d like DDOT to address. I also find the process for adding parking to this block a bit unusual.

First, the process — what initiated this change in parking was an email question on the MPD-4D listserv on February 13th, in full below:

I’m looking for some clarification on the ambiguous parking situation in the 3600 block of Georgia Ave NW adjacent to the CVS. Originally, this block allowed parking. Now, all the signs say either “No Parking” or “Metrobus Zone”. How is this area a metrobus zone when there is no metrobus stop on that block? Is there a reason this is no longer valid parking?

It’s all very confusing, so I always park across the street on Quebec Pl, which I’m sure the residents do not appreciate.

Before January 1, 2012, MPD’s Fourth District did not go south of Rock Creek Church Road. While that has since changed, topics on the MPD-4D are still largely focused on Ward 4 because of the large overlap.

Perhaps owing to this large overlap, Judi Gold, Constituent Services Coordinator for Councilmember Muriel Bowser, quickly contacted DDOT, alerted them of the problem, and reported back to the listserv that “There is no Metro Bus stop and DDOT will be removing the signs” on February 15th.

In talking to Ms. Gold, I both expressed my appreciation for her efforts and asked for additional details on just what DDOT was going to do and when they would do it. Explaining that the block in question was not in Ward 4, I expressed that I’d like to inform my community of the change, or at least be able to answer any questions that may come about due to it. Ms. Gold gave me a contact at DDOT to follow up, told me that she was happy to help with the parking problem since they don’t really pay much attention to Ward boundaries in such instances, and suggested that I get to know Councilmember Graham’s Constituent Services Coordinator since I live in Ward 1.

Now, while I find the process in this case odd, especially the initial lack of information sharing, I do find the willingness to get problems solved without worrying about protocol refreshing and hope it works equally on both sides of the Ward 1/4 boundary.

As I stated above, I agree that we need more parking when it is available. I also agree that parking tends to be tight on the 700 block of Quebec Place. Clearly, the no parking/bus stop signs need to be removed because that is no longer accurate. However, before we add parking to this block I’d also like to know how it impacts pedestrian safety.

As you can see from the photograph above, the block in question is a short block on the northbound side of the street leading to a six-point intersection. So, the two additional questions I’ve asked DDOT are:

  • For cars turning right, would it make more sense to have a turn lane or public parking on the block. If parking is permitted, will traffic be reduced to one lane from time to time as cars turning right onto Rock Creek Church Road or New Hampshire Avenue yield to pedestrians?
  • Lastly, will the parked cars create any blind spots increasing risk to pedestrians.

It’s possible that the additional parking will not create any problems. At least, that would be my hope. Never-the-less, I would like to know how this change will impact the pedestrians who use the intersection on a daily basis before work ensues.


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One Comment on “DDOT Planning to Open the 3600 Block of Georgia to Parking — Meters to be Installed”

  1. JS Says:

    Vehicles making the turn from GA Ave to Rock Creek Church very rarely yield to pedestrians. I’m surprised someone hasn’t been hit by a turning car, especially considering how fast drivers whip around that curve. Speed tables or raised crosswalks for the Rock Creek Church/NH crossing would be nice, but are probably a a no-go considering the buses that use those routes.

    Speaking of buses, there needs to be better enforcement of the no parking zone on the north side of Rock Creek Church just east of GA/NH Aves (outside of Sweet Mango). Twice in the past few weeks I’ve seen multiple cars illegally parked there, preventing the H8 buses from completing the turn onto Rock Creek Church Rd/ proceeding eastbound on the street. In both cases, I’m not sure what ultimately resolved the problem as the buses just sat there, unable to procede through the too-narrow distance between the cars parked on both sides of the street.

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