Greater Greater Washington


Cheh proposes hoverboard lanes and a Palisades stadium

DC may hire a dedicated person to help drivers read stop signs, build hoverboard lanes, and place the DC United stadium atop the Palisades Safeway, under budget recommendations from DC Councilmember and transportation chair Mary Cheh. As you might guess, these are a joke.

Photo by Debbie Goard on Flickr.

April Fool's Day was six weeks ago, but today is the day for joviality from Cheh and her staff, who put out an annual joke budget memo as council committees are making their serious budget recommendations.

The stop sign reader, the memo says, also will help people decipher parking signs:

Residents and tourists will be pleased to have a government employee stand next to them, read the sign, look back at the individual, look back at the sign, look at the location of the car in question, look back at the sign, shrug their shoulders, and exclaim, "hell if I know."
DC needs hoverboard lanes, Cheh says, because as we know from Back to the Future, Part II, hoverboards exist in 2015 and therefore they are going to be invented soon.
Hoverboard lanes will be placed between sidewalks and bicycle lanes. Opponents may argue that these lanes will only fuel the war on cars. This Committee stands by its position that there is no war on cars; however, as a
precautionary measure, an additional $175,000 will be allocated to the Department of Public Works to assist in the clean-up after D.C. Transit Judgment Day: the day when vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists engage in an all-out war to determine the District's policy going forward. Fortunately, some of us will have hoverboards to help us escape the battle.
Cheh has a great plan to get DC United a stadium without having to swap land for the Reeves Center: put it at the Palisades Safeway. For background, Safeway wants to build a new store with housing on top, and a lot of neighbors oppose housing for the usual reasons.

Cheh says this is a perfect solution:

Providing the Safeway with a grass roof will help the company obtain LEED certification. Moreover, residents will not need to be concerned about increased traffic or loud noise because—let's face it—who really goes to D.C. United games.
Instead of the proposed Rosslyn-Georgetown gondola, Cheh wants to fund a zip line. She has great suggestions to deal with the school lottery: a Harry Potter-style "sorting hat," or alternately, a "Hunger Games" style fight at RFK stadium.

Read the whole thing.

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David Alpert is the founder of Greater Greater Washington and its board president. He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He now lives with his wife and daughter in Dupont Circle. 


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Good to see Cheh has this kind of time on her hands. You would think that as Transport. Ctte. chair she'd be concerned about the potholes and poor WMATA service would be more of priority than this crap.

by Burd on May 13, 2014 11:30 am • linkreport

Cheh seems pretty active, not sure that is a valid complaint. Not like shes going to go out and fill in potholes herself.

by BTA on May 13, 2014 11:46 am • linkreport


Yeah, active in putting out crap like this. GGW and many of its readers love to criticise DDOT, its bureaucrats, and of course Mayor Gray, but never have any criticism for Cheh.

by Burd on May 13, 2014 12:05 pm • linkreport

Hopefully next on the project list (joke or real) is for CM Cheh to work with DDOT to update its road paving work plan. The "current" one on the DDOT website is from last year.

by Mitch Wander on May 13, 2014 12:10 pm • linkreport

low blow on DC united. joke at maryland's expense, not our united cheh

by markus on May 13, 2014 12:38 pm • linkreport

Pretty sure there has been lots of critical discussion of Cheh re: DDOT reorganization and especially local projects in Ward 3, but disagreement on policy aside I don't think doing nothing would be a valid criticism.

by BTA on May 13, 2014 1:11 pm • linkreport


And just when did I say Mary Cheh "did nothing"? I implied she needs to get her priorities straight, considering our terrible roads and the 3-yr late and over-budget streetcar project, she should be using whatever spare time of hers to fixing DDOT instead of attending to crap like this.

by Burd on May 13, 2014 1:58 pm • linkreport

No matter how many people use alternate modes of transportation they will always be the minority. I too am a supporter of alternate modes of transportation but there comes a point when we need to acknowledge that there is in fact, a war on cars.

To me this is funny, because, as silly as her examples are, she has a point: there is a war on cars. I understand, protecting the safety of cyclists, but not at the cost of making it impossible for drivers to get around. There is a perception being propounded increasingly by some, namely: two wheels good, four wheels bad. For those who live in the suburbs and work in the city, driving makes a lot of sense (I do in fact prefer the metro) but I'm not going to propose anything that would get in the way of drivers, because this is a free country, and people deserve to make certain choices.

by shesright on May 13, 2014 8:10 pm • linkreport

No matter how many people use alternate modes of transportation they will always be the minority.

If this isn't even true then why bother with the rest of it?

I understand, protecting the safety of cyclists, but not at the cost of making it impossible for drivers to get around.

That doesn't sound incredibly callous and cruel at all! (actually it does, especially since it's a false choice).

by drumz on May 13, 2014 8:33 pm • linkreport

We should be thanking Councilmember Cheh for her attention to the long underserved hoverboard community. Similarly, her proposal for a stop sign reader effectively bridges the gap between reality and comprehension, a bridge too often lacking in past transportation projects.

(Folks need to lighten up a tad. A spot of levity in the difficult process of putting together a budget bill is actually a welcome respite from the hum-drum work-a-day world of creating public policy.)

by Marchant Wentworth on May 14, 2014 6:01 am • linkreport

"Moreover, residents will not need to be concerned about increased traffic or loud noise because—let's face it—who really goes to D.C. United games."

Haha, it's funny because it's true, so true.

by PowerBoater on May 17, 2014 8:58 am • linkreport

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