The community plays a critical role in creating safe, inclusive streets with access to multimodal transportation options. Underinvestment, uneven planning, and ineffective resource distribution has made needed improvements to city streets and corridors a reactive afterthought, rather than a top priority. Additionally, the lack of adequate public transit options fails to meet residents’ daily needs. Together, let’s fight for:
- Expanded public transportation access for more Ward 5 neighborhoods;
- Safe and protected routes for cyclists, pedestrians and other means of transportation;
- Fair and effective ways for neighbors to share the roads, prioritizing the safety of pedestrians.
Focus on access and distribution of public transportation options
- Increase investments in access to transit services for Ward 5 communities lacking access to public transit options. This investment should prioritize building capacity and address inequity in transit access.
- Address inequitable access to all methods of transit options due to transit fare policies. Work with WMATA to create fare subsidy programs to make the metro rail fares more reasonable and accessible to lower income patrons.
- Explore opportunities to increase bus service to areas with limited public transit access. Utilize city operated assets, such as the Circulator, to help build interest and show value.
- Explore opportunities to subsidize, incentivize, and promote alternative options for transit, such as ride-share opportunities, Capital Bikeshare for All, or similar programs.
Fully fund and establish tangible actions steps for realizing the promise of Vision Zero
- Fully fund and implement Vision Zero and the Vision Zero Enhancement Omnibus Amendment Act of 2020.
- Establish a Vision Zero Task Force to include relevant agencies and community partners to support in the implementation of the action plan and to broaden community engagement and feedback.
- Establish DDOT ward community advisory committees to increase opportunities for dialogue between DDOT and communities, to get a clearer understanding of community needs and challenges.
- Require DDOT to work with the community to complete and update the DC Complete Streets Policy with a focus on street redesign to optimize safety and reduce speed limits to decrease traffic violence and accidents.
- Use current major crash and fatality data to prioritize immediate action steps and adjustments to problem intersections and corridors.
- Establish a DDOT-specific portal to report community needs with real time tracking of progress. Make this dashboard public to allow residents to track submitted requests and project completion timelines.
- Prioritize sidewalk improvements and work with the community to expedite requests.
- Prioritize the completion of protected bike lanes, with a focus on connecting the network of bike lanes to maximize usership access and utilization. To improve community awareness of bike lane projects and broaden communication, require DDOT to re-engage with impacted communities to share the opportunities and offer remedies to reduce potential impact.
Prioritize rethinking city streets and infrastructure for safety
- Increase local funding to match federal funds to support DC’s Safe Route to Schools program. Prioritize initial funding to rethink intersections adjacent to schools and recreation centers to systematically improve safety. Focus funding on interim safety measures to include: prioritizing four way stops; increase crossing guard support and coverage; adding additional traffic calming or road diet measures to slow speeding and reckless driving; utilize options to further promote safety at cross walks, such as, enhanced and raised crosswalks or using public art programs to make crosswalks more visible; and work with school communities, ANCs, and community leaders to outline additional focus areas. Create long term plans to support the long term needs of school communities to promote safety and encourage the ability of families to walk or use alternative transit options for commuting to school.
- Work closely with the community – ANC commissioners, the civic association, and neighbors – and DDOT to identify the issues plaguing the community regarding the influx of traffic and other safety issues in a community. Require open lines of communication from DDOT with the community to support whole community solutions to improve the immediate conditions and support overall safety. Moving away from piecemeal solutions will support long-term, sustainable safety solutions.
- Require the Office of Planning and DDOT to create a process for coordinating land use planning and needed zoning improvements to increase equitable public transit access for communities lacking adequate service. This plan should include members of the relevant agencies, members of the public, and advocates.
- Maximize affordable housing infrastructure investments by having the Office of Planning work closely with DDOT and housing agencies to focus affordable housing development close to public transit.
- Focus our city planning and funding on increasing walkable amenities in neighborhoods; there needs to be a particular focus on increasing options of small/mid-size grocery stores, restaurants, pharmacies and small retail stores, and green space.
- Support and secure funding to ensure community-driven solutions to traffic safety and creating community spaces like the North Capitol Deck Over Project are realized and supported by DDOT and future year budgets
Use driver education to discourage reckless behaviors and rethink traffic enforcement
- Move traffic enforcement to a function of the Department of Public Works and remove enforcement of traffic violations from MPD.
- Focus efforts on increasing automated enforcement of traffic violations. Start by utilizing current data to shift the use of current automated enforcement cameras to problem intersections and corridors.
- Direct the Department of Motor Vehicles to share driver education materials with all DC registered DC drivers through email communication and annual mailings. This correspondence should also be sent to out of state drivers who have DC traffic citations.
- Establish equitable citation fee structure to be adjusted for income levels. Eliminate the doubling and tripling of citation fees after a month’s time. Focus on the collection of fees by the creation of payment plans and other alternatives.
- Utilize enforcement efforts – such as license suspension, booting, towing, etc. – to change the behaviors of reckless drivers and persons with repeat traffic violations.
Focus on strategic plans for the future while acknowledging the needs of our community today, and promoting equity in actions.
Access to street parking and car usage is an essential daily need for some Ward 5 neighbors. The historical lack of investment in the equitable distribution of safe, reliable public transit options make living everyday life virtually impossible for some without access to a car. Ward 5 is also home to a large number of senior residents who might not find public transportation to be the most optimal choice. We live in a diverse community and while planning toward the reduction of car ownership and usage can be a goal we live into for the future, we must focus on efforts to meet the current multimodal transportation needs of Ward 5 residents. Reaching our goal in the future will require creating a forum for Ward 5 residents to collaborate and design equitable transportation action plans to meet our needs.