Apr 11, 2023 - News

D.C. considers revisions to Connecticut Avenue bike lane plan

A nighttime long-exposure photograph of Connecticut Avenue traffic

Connecticut Avenue is a busy artery into downtown. Photo: Craig Hudson for The Washington Post via Getty Images

The District is considering revisions to its massive bicycle lanes project on Connecticut Avenue NW to address concerns about parking loss.

Driving the news: One tweak being studied would place both the north and southbound bicycle lanes on one side of the street to allow parking on the opposite side, District Department of Transportation director Everett Lott told council members yesterday.

  • “The loss of such a significant amount of parking along that corridor is a concern of ours,” Lott said, citing complaints from businesses and accessibility worries for residents.

Why it matters: The Connecticut Avenue NW project is a contentious and hugely consequential reshaping of a major commuter thoroughfare. Cycling advocates say the 2.7-mile protected bicycle lane would mean a big leap toward a safer street, after recent deadly motorist crashes.

State of play: Axios reported last Wednesday that DDOT was delaying the release of its final concept design from this spring to the end of this year.

  • “We’re not going to rush on this,” Lott said yesterday. The rethinking of the bicycle lane placement “will require a little bit more time,” he added.

Catch up quick: The current concept design puts bicycle lanes from Calvert Street north to Legation Street. It also lowers the speed limit from 30mph to 25mph.

  • DDOT also told Axios it is considering an extension several blocks up into Chevy Chase Circle and making the bicycle lanes wider, from 5 feet to 7 feet.
  • The agency is also considering having 24/7 parking near businesses, and some spots limited to 30 minutes aimed at patrons of local shops.
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