Saturday, March 31, 2012

Continually Ignoring Un-Built D.C. I-95

Its good they are considering an 'outer beltway' bridge; but ignoring the un-built Washington, D.C. freeways should fail a laugh test

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley are discussing building a new Potomac River crossing to ease traffic on the Beltway.

Virginia Secretary of Transportation Sean Connaughton told reporters Wednesday that the two governors are reviving discussions of the project, which has been proposed several times in recent years only to collapse under local and environmental concerns.

“This is something that obviously has enormous support in the region. It may not have support from all the special interests, but it is something that is long overdue for us to really examine very seriously,” Connaughton said. “Gov. McDonnell had raised this with Gov. O’Malley, and we are starting the process. I’ve already had some discussion with them about a joint effort.”

Connaughton would not say where the second crossing being discussed would be placed, but argued it's needed to relieve Beltway congestion.

“Imagine if you can get one out of every eight to nine cars off the [Beltway], he said. “There’s not another improvement we can make with that sort of impact on traffic.”

A Crafted Controversy- the Scuttling of JFK's North Central FreewayLink

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

1971 DeLeuw Cather Weese Hi & Low Level B&O NCF

Elevated- at MD-DC Line-Takoma

Depressed/Tunneled- at MD-DC Line-Takoma

Elevated- Brookland, D.C.

Depressed- Covered Brookland, D.C.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

US NCPC Perjury- 2006

Regarding the tragically located Comstock Homes 'The Hampshires'

Parcel 126/74 and Lot 858 in Square 3719, bounded by Rittenhouse Street, New Hampshire Avenue, Peabody Street, Chillum Place and Sligo Mill Road, NE

Lots 69 – 73, 801, 824 and 826 in Square 3714, bounded by Peabody Street, New Hampshire Avenue and 1st Street, NE, Washington, D.C.

Delegated Action of the Executive Director
October 26, 2006

Pursuant to delegations of authority adopted by the Commission on August 6, 1999, I find that the proposed consolidated Planned Unit Development (PUD) and related map amendment for a residential development (6000 New Hampshire Avenue, NE) located in Parcel 126/74 and Lot 858 in Square 3719 bounded by Rittenhouse Street, New Hampshire Avenue, Peabody Street, Chillum Place and Sligo Mill Road, NE and in Lots 69 – 73, 801, 824 and 826 in Square 3714 bounded by Peabody Street, New Hampshire Avenue and 1st Street, NE, Washington, D.C., would not adversely affect any federal interests nor be inconsistent with the Comprehensive Plan for the National Capital.

* * *

On behalf of the West Group Development Company, LLC and The Jarvis Company, LLC, the District of Columbia Zoning Commission has referred a proposed action for a consolidated Planned Unit Development (PUD) and a map amendment for a residential development for review and comment. The proposed PUD (6000 New Hampshire Avenue, NE is located within the Lamond-Riggs neighborhood in northeast Washington, D.C. on approximately 11.5 acres in Parcel 126/74 and Lot 858 in Square 3719, bounded by Rittenhouse Street, New Hampshire Avenue, Peabody Street, Chillum Place and Sligo Mill Road, NE, and in Lots 69–73, 801, 824 and 826 in Square 3714, bounded by Peabody Street, New Hampshire Avenue and 1st Street, NE.

NCPC File No. Z.C. 05-30
NCPC File No. ZC 05-30

Page 2

The site gently slopes approximately 30-50 feet from west to east and in general the existing topography will remain with the proposed development. The site is the former campus of the Masonic Star Nursing Home and Med-Star Health offices and is currently an open lawn area that is under-developed.

The proposed PUD will provide a variety of residential development, totaling approximately 369,684 square feet, including 2-3 story single-family detached homes (38), 2-3 story townhouses (73) and apartment condominiums (58) adapted within two existing structures. The development will provide housing opportunities for a variety of income levels and age groups; three of the townhouses and eleven condominium units will be designated for affordable housing. Two hundred sixty-eight parking spaces either within individual garages or on-street will exceed the minimum residential parking requirement of 188 spaces. In general the proposed site plan has single-family homes located around the perimeter and adjacent to the existing single-family homes found in the surrounding neighborhood. For the most part, the proposed townhouses will be located internal to the site. The PUD will provide a community center and a large common open space. A dog park and a series of pocket parks with passive recreation features and/or gardens will be provided for the residents. The proposed site will have an internal system of landscaped streets and alleys. The development will be accessed from five separate entrances as well as by two existing streets, Quakenbos Street, NE and First Street, NE, that will extend into the site.

In order to preserve green open space and reduce the need for extensive site regrading, the applicant is requesting flexibility of a small percentage of the residential units from side and rear yard and lot occupancy requirements. The applicant is requesting that the current zoning be amended from R-1-B to PUD R-5-A which will allow low density residential development (40% lot occupancy), building heights up to 60 feet, Floor Area Ratio (FAR) of 1.0 and the adaptive re-use of the existing structures into condominium apartments. I find that the proposed PUD and related map amendment will not adversely affect any federal interests nor be inconsistent with the Comprehensive Plan for the National Capital.
Patricia E. Gallagher, AICP
Executive Director


USNCPC of course has long ago abandoned support of a truly comprehensive transport network for Washington, D.C., resting upon a 180 degree in its reversal of its support for JFK's B&O Route North Central Freeway, in December 1968, based upon errors of fact about this important northern radial.

Such was likewise done during the mid 1970s with the downtown hub (Inner Loop), involving lying -- describing the system as destructive when in fact it was radically redesigned in conformance to the wishes of this same Elisabeth Rowe who had actively supported the crosstown I-66 K Street Tunnel, along with spurious reasoning based upon the assumption that automobiles could only possibly be propelled by gasoline or petroleum diesel combustion engines, and that the world was going to run out of petroleum by the 1990s.

Both the Catholic Sisters and Fort Drive routes in D.C. connected to Northwest Branch Park routes in Maryland, which was the official plan for the longest period (1950s to Feb. 1973)

The PEPCO power line route option appears as an suggested option in the 1971 report, with a modified version appearing in the 1973 Western Prince Georges County Transportation Study.

The power line is important as the -- using modern day terminology -- what would be definable as the Least Environmentally Damaging Practical Alternative for using the existing 250 foot clear-cut right of way of the PEPCO power line corridor, conveniently located parallel to I-95 at and north of the I-495 Capital Beltway. Because of this existing right of way, I-95 has the space to be extended considerably without displacing any dwellings, and no businesses, except for the 1600 foot extension past the PEPCO southern terminus to the MD-DC line, and then 23 and 5 dwellings within DC- the number being so low because of the open field of the Masonic Eastern Star Home at 6000 New Hampshire Avenue NE.

The PEPCO power line route option appears as an suggested option in the 1971 report, with a modified version appearing in the 1973 Western Prince Georges County Transportation Study.

The PEPCO I-95 route was the segment that The Washington Post misrepresented in this map in 2000.

About 'The Hampshires'

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Glen Harper pro ICC Activist Dies

Glen Harper with Ruth Abbott, widow of Sammie Abbott
in 1998


On Wednesday, March 14, 2012 of Rockville, MD. Devoted husband of Dorothy "Dot" Harper; beloved father of Ashley (Sean) Bergesen, Amy (Jeremy) Padbury and Michael Harper; loving grandpa of Andrew, Claire and Jackson; son of Eldride S. Harper; brother of Joseph "Jay" N. (Ann Marie) Harper, Jr. and Mary Ellen (Mike) Hart. A memorial service will be held at North Chevy Chase Christian Church, 8814 Kensington Parkway, Chevy Chase, MD 20815, on Tuesday, March 20 at 2 p.m. Reception to follow at church. Interment private. Contributions may be made to North Chevy Chase Christian Church.
A pro- Inter County Connector -- just a few miles outside the Beltway -- activist who promoted various environmentally sensitive forms of highway construction, particularly "end-on" construction.

He most certainly would hear Ruth Abbott tell him that they should build the ICC.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

A New D.C. 95 Project

The U.S. Government needs to start behaving as a government of the people rather than a lackey of an inside the Beltway levitation that wants to keep I-95 far away.

It needs legislation to 're-map' the Washington, D.C. freeway system as it was planning as per the 1970s, with a few modifications to further refine the design for superior operation-ability and reduced impacts, notably with the Center Leg transition to the north-east, as well as with the segment through the CUA-Brookland area to better utilize the lightly developed industrial properties to secure the right of way.

It needs a full system, featuring such components as the I-66 K Street Tunnel, the Y Route B&O North Central and PEPCO - New Hampshire Avenue Northeast Freeway, and the East Leg to RFK Stadium and the SE Freeway - updated as per the design evolution evident with projects as Madrid, Spain's M-30 tunnel- hence built as cut and cover tunnelways beneath new linear boulevard framed promenades, along the Anacostia Rver and over a buried B&O Metropolitan Branch WMATA Red Line/CSX/MARC RR- the latter the Washington, D.C.'s new northern mall the Grand Arc.

This full system includes the existing downtown freeway segments that would be improved in capacity and design, and under-grounded, as far west in the style as proposed in 2008 by U.S. NCPC for a new Washington Channel Tunnel for I-395 as part of a project replacing today's jumble of 14th Street Bridges. It would likewise reconstruct the I-66 West Leg (JFK Performing Arts Center area) underground, including the interchange at K Street beneath a new waterfront promenade, and accommodate future deep bored road links to the northwest in D.C., and southwest to Virginia.

This system is best facilitated by preserving a parallel path for segmenting the construction of the underground replacement for the SW-SE Freeway, with demolition primarily confined to the row of 28 townhouses at the northnmost end of the 'Capital Square' project of EYI Associates, plus that required for transitioning the subterranean right of ways for a collector-distributer tunnelway beneath G Street (and 2nd and 3rd Streets for the Center Leg), eliminating the SW Freeway's bottleneck, while easing its construction with new space alongside the still in service existing highway.

The system is buildable in segments.

The first segment would be the relief tunnels beneath G, 2nd and 3rd Street, thus first upgrading the existing SW-SE Freeway/Center Legnel), with the latter's extension tunneled beneath O Street to the vicinity of New York and Florida Avenue, with a spur along New York Avenue to Maryland Route 50, which would be improved inside of Maryland.

Friday, March 09, 2012

1966 North Central Freeway Supplementary Report GUIDE


November 29, 1966


1966 Supplementary Report Introduction

November 29, 1966


In accordance with the provisions of Change Order No. 2 to District of Columbia Formal Agreement No. 2224, we submit herewith our Engineering Feasibility Report which records the study of the location for the north Central Freeway within the corridor of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad between Rhode Island Avenue and the Capital Beltway.

The study, which supplements the comprehensive location studies for the Project presented in the Engineering Feasibility Report of October 1964, was conducted to determine the feasibility of constructing the freeway throughout its route in close proximity to the existing railroad and the proposed rail rapid transit line in order to minimize displacement and disruption to established neighborhoods.

As a result of the study, it has been determined that location of the Freeway within the Railroad corridor for the full length of the project is feasible and will effect the desired reduction in displacement and neighborhood disruption. It has been further concluded, after investigation of alternative alignments and concepts, that if the freeway is constructed within the Railroad Corridor, it should conform to the low level concept which is developed and described in the Report. Under this concept the Freeway would be located contiguous to the Railroad, with a grade line generally at or below the elevation of the Railroad.

The Report examines alternative alignments and concepts within the designated corridor, and presents data, drawings, and suggested design treatments pertaining to the low level concept.

We appreciate the cooperation received from the members of your staffs the staffs of the District of Columbia and Maryland Divisions of the Bureau of Public Roads and the staffs of the departments and agencies in the District of Columbia and Montgomery County who have furnished data and have participated in the review of our work.

Very Truly Yours

J.E. Geiner Company

E.J. Donnelly

For a number of years, transportation planning and studies in the Washington Metropolitan area have recognized the importance of the North Central Freeway as a major transportation facility to serve as an artery between the central core of the District of Columbia and the outlying areas of Takoma Park, Silver Spring and neighboring communities in Montgomery County, Maryland.

Since the facility was first proposed, consideration has been given to its location along a number of possible alternative alignments. Generally, these were contained within a wide corridor or band extending laterally from 16th Street and Georgia Avenue on the west to an irregular line situated immediately east of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad in the District of Columbia and along Sligo Parkway and University Boulevard in Montgomery County.

An engineering feasibility report published in October 1964 presented analyses of a number of alternate routes for the Freeway within that wide corridor and included the selection of a recommended route which was based on considerations of traffic service; effect on residential, commercial and industrial uses in the corridor; and cost.

After considering comments on the report and reactions to the Freeway and its location which were presented at the public hearings following publication of the 1964 report, and after a review of the subject by the staffs of the District of Columbia Department of Highways and Traffic, the two highway departments determined to conduct further study on the location of the project, with particular emphasis to be placed on minimizing of displacement and neighborhood disruption and obtaining good aesthetic relationship to the surrounding areas.

The highway agencies were mindful of the disruption to established neighborhoods that can be avoided and the reduction in residential displacement that can be accomplished by constructing the Freeway in its entirety in close proximity to the existing railroad and the proposed rapid transit line. Therefore, they directed their consultant to study the feasibility of locating the Freeway within the corridor of the Baltimore and Ohio railroad for the full length of the project between its interchange connection with the Inner Loop at Rhode Island Avenue in the District of Columbia and its connection to the Capital Beltway in Montgomery County, north of 16th Street where it is situated to the west of the previous study limits. The location study and the resulting data and conclusions are the subject of this report.

The first phase of the study comprised an investigation of possible alternative arrangements of the Freeway, Railroad and transit in the single corridor, i.e., construction of the Freeway over the Railroad and transit lines, beneath these facilities, adjacent to them, or combinations thereof. The several concepts for construction of the freeway were narrowed to two which were considered practicable. One of the two schemes provides for he construction of the Freeway continuously at a high altitude above the Railroad ad the adjoining properties and the other provides for its construction immediately contiguous to the Railroad, with a grade line generally at or below he elevation of the Railroad. These have been identified as during this study as the high-level and low-level concepts respectively.
- 1966 ncf report, p 1 report in brief

Conclusions and Recommendations

A comparative analysis of the two scheme showed the low level concept to be clearly superior to the high level design, particularly from the standpoint of aesthetics. The low lying design would be unobtrusive and fit int the long established Railroad corridor without visual impact on the surrounding areas. The high level concept on the other hand because of its height and mass, would cast a shadow upon its surrounding, much of which are devoted to residential and institutional uses.

Either concept would provide the accepted traffic service and either would result in virtually the same residential displacement. The high-level concept, which would be constructed throughout its length on structure, would be the more costly of the two. The adaptability of the low-level concept to air rights construction over the Freeway for housing, commercial installations and transit facilities is also a feature strongly in its favor.

Accordingly, the low-level concept was recommended to the reviewing highway agencies as the most desirable route and design concepts for construction of the freeway with in the Railroad corridor. After approval of he recommendation, study and development of the low-level concept was carried in more detail, including the preparation of drawings, the investigation of potential urban development over and adjacent to the freeway, and the development of cost estimates and socio-economic data, all of which are represented and discussed in this Report.

The total length of the route is 7.71 miles and the estimated Project cost is $193, 574, 000. Approximately 4.33 miles of the Project are located in the District of Columbia and the estimated Project cost of this option of the freeway is $116,242,000. The remaining 3.38 miles of the Freeway are located in Montgomery County, Maryland, for which the estimated Project cost is $77,332,000. Construction of the Project will require the displacement of approximately 535 families throughout its entire length, of which 372 are within the District of Columbia and 163 in Montgomery County, Maryland.

The results of this study show clearly that the location of he North Central Freeway within the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Corridor will minimize family displacement and the division of neighborhoods, both of which have been major reasons expressed in opposition to previous alignments considered for the Project. he low-level concept, which has been selected from the several possible routes in the Railroad Corridor, provides, in addition to the above advantages, good aesthetic relationship to the surrounding areas, compatibility wit Railroad and transit operations in the corridor, and the greatest potential for urban development, including air rights construction over the Freeway for housing, commercial and transit facilities.

It would also be the least costly to construct of the several alternate routes following the alignment of the Railroad. The drawings included in this Report are presented as the basis for a design of the North Central Freeway which will not only meet the functional requirements of a major urban expressway but should also be acceptable to the community because of its favorable relationship to and impact on the neighborhoods in this transportation corridor. ncf report p2

Though the report blurs the history leading up to 1964, the 1966 design was a step in the right direction with its generally low level design.

November 29, 1966

J.E. GREINER COMPANY Consulting Engineers

November 1966