DC’s Transit Future Appears Bright
At the Washington, DC Economic Partnership’s Business Initiatives Breakfast, “DC’s Transit Future: Connecting DC’s Businesses and Neighborhoods,” guest speaker Dan Tangherlini of the DC Department of Transportation (DDOT) provided the audience with a wealth of transportation knowledge.
Tangherlini spoke about the goals of DDOT, which included dedicated funding for Metro rails, improving the current bus system, the return of streetcars and the addition of approximately 200 miles of sidewalks throughout the city.
One method of dedicated funding is through Virginia Congressman Tom Davis’ bill that would invest $1.5 billion in the Metro system. The money would be allocated in annual payments of $150 million divided over 10 years and be used to add rail cars, expand stations and otherwise improve the system.
Improvements to the District’s bus system consist of the currently operating Circulator and Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) lines. Each of these systems works to better connect residents and tourists to the businesses in DC’s downtown and neighborhoods. The BRTs have fewer stops, making the routes more express-like. Operators can have on-board devices to control traffic signals and fare collection often takes place at the stop rather than on the bus itself.
In addition, streetcars will make a return to the District. The new rail system will make it easier for riders to maneuver through the streets of DC. The first streetcars will debut in Anacostia. DDOT is currently holding workshops and meetings with Anacostia residents so that they have a place to express their concerns and learn more about the system. The District has three street cars under construction in the Czech Republic.
For more information on the District’s transit future, go to the DDOT webpage.