Levee work on the NE and NW Branch trails starting in April
Break out the off-road tires...
ATTENTION ALL ANACOSTIA TRIBUTARY TRAIL PATRONS. Prince George’s County’s Department of Public Works and Transportation (DPW&T) will conduct a Levee Improvement Project beginning on or about April 9, 2012, which will extend through the end of the year. This project will impact the Anacostia Tributary Trail hiker/biker trail ways south of Route 410 – The East West Highway along the Northwest Branch and the Northeast Branch of the Anacostia River. Trail detours and/or closures are to be expected. The Bladensburg Waterfront Marina and Park will be minimally impacted during the scheduled work. For more information, please contact DPW&T’s Office of Project Management at 301-883-5640.
Trail closed signs have gone up, but it's open for now
They say on or about April 9. I called today to try to get info, but haven't heard back. I'll call them back tomorrow.
Info as in: When will various section be closed? Will there be paved or unpaved detours in the floodplain for cyclists? Will there be marked on-road detours? How soon will this be done (if it takes as long as it is taking to repair the trail near the new skatepark, I fear a long time...)? What efforts are being made to get the word out to not-so-regular bike commuters/trail users? Why are they doing this (levees too weak? levees being raised?) Is there any opportunity for public input or suggestions?
OK, trail actually closed this morning. Detour is unmarked, but it's easy and pleasant enough. Take Taylor street up to Riverdale Road (going north). Or Riverdale Road over to Taylor (going south). Taylor is residential. Riverdale is slow in those sections, so no problem to take the lane for a block.
Here are the questions I have sent to Susan Hubbard, public information officer for this. Prior messages were referred to the project manager, who didn't return calls. Susan's email is sdhubbard1 at co.pg.md.us and the number is 301-883-5640
What sections of trail are scheduled to be closed, and when? Can you give a timeline for when various parts of the trails will be closed?
What detours are planned, and will there be signage, either raised signs or pavement markings? For example, the detour around the currently closed sections is fairly easy, using Riverdale Road and Taylor Street. However, the bike detour around the section south of Decatur Street is more complex, involving riding on roads and cross train tracks and busy intersections in traffic. Likewise the NW branch section between Route 1 and 38th street detour is really problematic. Would you pave an alternative trail on the south side dike for use as a detour while the north side is being worked on in that section?
Why is this work being done? Is it to raise the levee? Strengthen it? Both? How is this project being financed? Is federal or state funding involved, or just county? Who is doing the work (contractors etc.?) or county public works staff? Is this work based on new studies of flood control needs, or for other purposes? What was the process for deciding to perform this work? Was there a federal earmark? Was this part of the economic stimulus funding?
What public information efforts have been made to get the word out to bike commuters and other trail users that the trails are closed? Which media outlets were contacted? Has this been coordinated with the anacostiatrails.org or WABA.org or the East Coast Greenway (which have rides scheduled along the trail this month)? Was there a public comment period? What neighborhood notifications have been done? What was the process for notifying citizens?
OK, one more comment: apparently there's a dirt double track on the east side of the river between Decatur Street and Riverdale Road. Gonna try that tomorrow, and maybe take the camera along. If PG doesn't get back to me with some answers, I'll try MNCPPC tomorrow.