For Release: Monday, July 12, 2021
Contact: Nick DelleDonne ,
BREAKING – Safeway Forces Changes to DDOT 17th St. Bike Plan,
‘Why Won’t DDOT, Pinto Hold a Public Presentation?’
Neighborhood Coalition on DDOT Bike Plans Grows
Safeway reports this morning that the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) was forced to back down on it controversial and confusing 17th St Bike Plan. In a phone call this morning with Dupont East Civic Action Association (DECAA), which has been leading the call for a public presentation, Safeway said it held a tour of its grocery store with DDOT on Friday when DDOT was embarrassed to admit that, as it is, Safeway cannot receive deliveries. Last week a semi-truck was forced to drive away with its cargo still on the truck.
In a second shocking disclosure, DDOT admitted that its plan – never before disclosed – for protected bike lanes on both sides of the street, now must be abandoned – there will be no bike lane on the west side of 17th St.
Last night on WUSA9 News, two former Dupont ANC commissioners Randy Downs and Aaron Landry reported that the 17th St. Bike Plan would become the model for the city.
Storm clouds over the 17th St. plan have been building ever since Councilmember Brooke Pinto announced gleefully at a civic association meeting two months ago that DDOT had made a major breakthrough in its 17th St. Bike Plan, particularly in the two blocks between P St. and Riggs Pl., NW, the economic and social nerve center of the East Dupont community. According to Pinto, DDOT studied traffic during the COVID pandemic and decided “All the traffic will be funneled through one lane!”
On Friday, Pinto who is fond of visiting Mar-a-Lago, announced on a private listserv, that despite the growing demand for a public presentation of the Plan, she stomped her foot and refused to hold a public presentation to let her constituents know that there is a Plan and what it is. DECAA is investigating the Plan’s failure to comply with lawful handicapped regulations.
DECAA reports that the Coalition on DDOT Bike Plans, comprised of citizen and business associations and churches representing neighborhoods across the city continues to grow with the addition today of Capitol Hill East. The Coalition has called Walking Tour of the 17th St. Bike Plan on Wednesday, July 14 at 11 am to meet at the corner of 17th St. and Q St. NW. There will be music.
“In 20 years of civic affairs, I have never seen such intransigence from the administration,” said Alexander Padro, Executive Director of Shaw Main Streets, “We need a city-wide coalition.” Padro is concerned about DDOT’s failure to engage with the churches, restaurants and residents on the 9th St. Bike Plan.