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Thread: 17th Street Cycle Track

  1. #1
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    Default 17th Street Cycle Track

    Has there been any discussion on the boards regarding a proposal to construct a cycletrack on 17th St NW from New Hampshire all the way to K Street?

    GGW article

    Engineering and Traffic study here.

    Start with this question: In the original MoveDC Multi-Modal Long Range Transportation Plan for the city, no changes to the 17th Street corridor were anticipated.
    Last edited by Mariner; 05-31-2018 at 03:23 PM.

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    I haven't heard anything further about this, but would love to see a cycletrack on 17th Street NW. Like 15th Street NW, it's one-way and has low traffic volume. Converting a lane to cycling infrastructure would be NBD.

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    If (hypothetically) it goes all the way to K Street, it might as well extend another two blocks to Lafayette Square, so people can connect through to the 15th Street cycletrack.

    My homeward commute starts at 17th and M, and that first half mile or so is the worst. Either I have to navigate the bus zone around Farragut Square, or take a left on L Street which loses the bike lane (the worst safe accommodations failure in the city, construction zone around the old WaPo building). Both options are a nightmare getting to the 15th Street cycletrack.

    Nevermind the frequent and arbitrary closures of Lafayette Park <sigh>.

    Any improvements north of M Street would be welcomed, too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mariner View Post
    Start with this question: In the original MoveDC Multi-Modal Long Range Transportation Plan for the city, no changes to the 17th Street corridor were anticipated.
    I was the one at DDOT who got this started, and the rationale was that while it wasn't on moveDC:

    1) we had a community explicitly ask us to identify more protected bike lanes beyond what moveDC proposed for the area
    2) there were no apparent huge tradeoffs to navigate
    3) there's bike congestion on 15th, this could help
    4) signal progression is unfixably terrible for southbound riding on 15th, this provides a protected alternative
    5) there's demand to travel northbound by bike on 17th. The majority of riders on 17th in the evening are going north (on sidewalk, or illegally salmoning in the bikelane)

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikepedantic View Post
    I was the one at DDOT who got this started, and the rationale was that while it wasn't on moveDC:

    1) we had a community explicitly ask us to identify more protected bike lanes beyond what moveDC proposed for the area
    2) there were no apparent huge tradeoffs to navigate
    3) there's bike congestion on 15th, this could help
    4) signal progression is unfixably terrible for southbound riding on 15th, this provides a protected alternative
    5) there's demand to travel northbound by bike on 17th. The majority of riders on 17th in the evening are going north (on sidewalk, or illegally salmoning in the bikelane)
    Thanks for weighing in, bikepedantic, and proposing the ideas.

    From this perspective, I'm all for the project and I've signed the petition. It makes a heap ton of sense to create a two-way cycletrack on 17th for all the reasons given. Especially since the justification and community support already exist, it would be crazy to pass up that opportunity. Count me in for ending the one-way rush hour madness, if possible, and for finding some accommodation for delivery trucks so they don't impede the cycletrack or travel lane (we are watching and reporting).

    This part though:
    "They'd like to eventually find a way to continue the lane around Farragut Square to connect to the planned Pennsylvania Avenue west of the White House lanes and even to Constitution, but that's further down the road, metaphorically as well as literally."

    I know what my Dad (who's 89 and has memory issues) means when I make a suggestion and he says that's "down the road". It means he doesn't really want to do it, and is trying to break it to me gently. I hope DDOT and the powers that be don't give up strategizing about improvements to the vital link from K to Constitution. It's the worst part of my bike commute, and I know I speak for many cyclists when I say it's a dangerous and frustrating mess.

    DC commuters, please consider signing the petition for a cycletrack on 17th Street.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikepedantic View Post
    3) there's bike congestion on 15th, this could help
    This is such a beautiful statement. Bike congestion! We built a pretty good protected cycletrack and what do you know, so many people are using it that it's getting crowded.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jrenaut View Post
    This is such a beautiful statement. Bike congestion! We built a pretty good protected cycletrack and what do you know, so many people are using it that it's getting crowded.
    Every time i said it, i couldn't help but grin. It's a great milestone, but has real safety impacts. If you've ever gone against the dominant bike traffic flow in peak period, you know.

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    Indeed. Or if you come down Q and try to turn left into the NB cycletrack with a green light but four cyclists are either running the light or halfway into the intersection in preparation for running the light.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ginacico View Post

    This part though:
    "They'd like to eventually find a way to continue the lane around Farragut Square to connect to the planned Pennsylvania Avenue west of the White House lanes and even to Constitution, but that's further down the road, metaphorically as well as literally."

    I know what my Dad (who's 89 and has memory issues) means when I make a suggestion and he says that's "down the road". It means he doesn't really want to do it, and is trying to break it to me gently. I hope DDOT and the powers that be don't give up strategizing about improvements to the vital link from K to Constitution. It's the worst part of my bike commute, and I know I speak for many cyclists when I say it's a dangerous and frustrating mess.

    DC commuters, please consider signing the petition for a cycletrack on 17th Street.
    I no longer work there, so I can only speak to my motivations in getting the project launched, and why we didn't look past K - There's a LOT going on in Farragut Square - busy I and K Street traffic, a someday-maybe major streetcar reconstruction, NPS park ownership, an existing popular food truck cluster, etc. Figuring out that linkage will take a major effort.

    Proceeding from the Square down to Constitution (included in 3rd tier of moveDC) would also entail some work & tradeoffs, in terms of heavy H and I Street traffic turn conflicts, curbside use, and USSS needs. And moveDC has lines on F & G Streets, to better connect the TR Bridge sidepath - those facilities (esp G) would require some work to figure out how they would safely connect with the most-likely 17th St facility.

    All of this is to say that the K Street boundary was chosen because things get a LOT harder south of there, and tackling them with the quick-hit project that DDOT is pursuing would eliminate the quick-hit. Doing better lanes that only get people down to L&M aren't perfect, or completely address the network need, but they do have utility.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikepedantic View Post
    I no longer work there,
    betcha miss DC now, huh?

    Cannon to right of them,
    Cannon to left of them,
    Cannon in front of them
    Volleyed and thundered;
    Stormed at with shot and shell,
    Boldly they rode and well,
    Into the jaws of Death,
    Into the mouth of hell
    Rode the six hundred.

    (please note this is not an official communication of any organization, but my personal snark about my beloved town only, and anyone who wants to know what the hell I am talking about should PM me -don't worry bikepedantic, I only have nice things to say )
    Last edited by lordofthemark; 06-04-2018 at 02:24 PM.

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