The Washington, DC region is great >> and it can be greater.


Even more links: New perspective in the Old Line

Photo by Kevin H.
Wilson Bridge trail makes connections: The Woodrow Wilson Bridge bike and pedestrian trail will open next weekend. To his credit, reporter Michael Laris doesn't just write the "how cute, there's a trail for hikers and bikers for fun" story, instead talking about the trail as an actual transportation link, writing, "The disjointed Washington region is about to be linked a little more tightly." (Post)

How about smart growth, not pro growth or no growth: The election of Nancy Navarro to the Montgomery County Council will likely tip the balance in the Council toward the current four-member coalition of Ervin, Floreen, Leventhal, and Knapp. The latter three, at least, are often described as "pro-development." Columnist Blair Lee predicts that the "pro-growth" view will now be on top in Montgomery, trumping the "slow growth" or "no growth" side. And the Council will soon choose a member of the Planning Board. But must the Council debate, or at least the press coverage, revolve around growth or not? The County needs to focus its growth around its Metro stations (like White Flint, while resisting plans for just more sprawl like Gaithersburg West. (Gazette, Post)

Village green or secret courtyard?: The Montgomery Planning Board approved a development in Fenton Village, near downtown Silver Spring, that will create a public green and add small streets inside a block, similar to Bethesda Lane. Neighbors argue that by putting the green in the middle of the block, it creates more of a "secret courtyard." (Just Up The Pike)

Affordable Bethesda: A group is buying and rehabilitating a 44-year-old office building and converting it to single-room affordable housing. It would mix in retail at the street level. (Post, Cavan)

To get Metro, Fairfax has to tax: Western Fairfax must create a special taxing district to fund its part of the Silver Line, but amid the economic downturn, the community is nervous. Tysons already has a similar district to pay for its piece. (Examiner)

U.S. calls timeout on 'roadless' forest projects: Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced a virtual moratorium on new development in "roadless" areas of national parks. Any such projects would need his personal approval before going forward. This is a move that environmentalists have been calling for since Bush authorized the construction of roads in such areas. (Philadelphia Inquirer, JTS)

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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 two children in Dupont Circle. 


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Please don't confuse National Forests for National Parks.

Quote: "Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack issued a temporary order yesterday governing development in "roadless" areas of national forests, requiring all new projects to be approved by him personally."

National Parks fall under the Department of the Interior, National Forests are far different.

I'm from Oregon originally and this confusion drives me up the wall.

by Boots on May 29, 2009 10:41 am • linkreport

Can someone please explain to me: once I bike across the Wilson Bridge into PG, IS THERE ANYWHERE TO ACTUALLY GO FROM THERE?!?!?

by Simon on May 29, 2009 11:12 am • linkreport

National Harbor?

by Bianchi on May 29, 2009 11:59 am • linkreport

Bianchi: how/via what route?

by Simon on May 29, 2009 12:11 pm • linkreport

let me be more specific with my question. If someone can publish a nice 15-20 mile loop into lower P.G., starting and ending in Old Town and going over the bridge, that'd be much appreciated. Otherwise, I'll probably only ride over the bridge once to check it out, and then never use it again.

by Simon on May 29, 2009 12:12 pm • linkreport

Using the two roads connecting National Harbor with Oxon Hill Rd, it's theoretically possible to branch out from the Maryland side of the WWB. However, I don't recall there being any bike/ped accommodations on those roads, and their NH end is a jumble of ramps as it is. So I don't expect it to be utilized very much.

It'd be awesome if there were connections from the WWB both north along/near I-295 to the Douglas Bridge (and Anacostia Waterfront), and northeast along Oxon Run, but I don't see either happening anytime soon. Too bad, too, because the latter in particular would open up a way for me to bike to work.

by Froggie on May 29, 2009 3:27 pm • linkreport

The real problem with this plan is because there are not bike paths that go to the Wilson Bridget - planners will simply point to this and say, see bike paths do not work. Argh.

by Tim Fry on May 29, 2009 4:25 pm • linkreport

Not completely true, Tim. There's direct access from the Mt. Vernon Trail to the WWB trail. But where the problem comes in, as already mentioned, is the lack of connection on the Maryland side.

by Froggie on May 30, 2009 7:30 am • linkreport

Fair froggie - but do you see this route being used that much? I don't but that doesn't mean that I don't think other routes would. But do you see legislators and planners making that distinction?

by Tim Fry on Jun 5, 2009 12:18 pm • linkreport

I'll be the first to agree that, until it connects to something other than National Harbor, it won't get used much after the initial novelty wears off. And no, politicians won't make the distinction because it's not in their nature to do so.

by Froggie on Jun 5, 2009 12:21 pm • linkreport

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