Banishing buses to L'Enfant
DDOT is planning to force all low-cost bus carriers, like Bolt Bus, DC2NY, and the Chinatown buses to stop loading in Chinatown and at various other spots around the city (a few pick up in Dupont Circle), reports the Examiner (via DCist). Instead, all buses will have to load and unload at a special zone at 10th and D Southwest, right by the L'Enfant Metro.
This seems like a terrible idea. It sounds like it came from the LOS-watchers within DDOT: "Hmm, these buses are causing a lot of pedestrian congestion and taking up some room on our streets which should be used to move commuters in and out of the city as fast as possible. OK, let's put the buses in an empty part of the city, but one that's near Metro."
Intercity trains are much more energy-efficient than buses, but one advantage of buses is their flexibility. It's good that buses can choose to pick up in areas where there are many customers. Also, the service brings more pedestrian activity to those neighborhoods. At L'Enfant, there's nothing, and people will all just hop on the Metro.
If traffic is a problem, take away some curb parking or a traffic lane. Each of those buses carries as many people as a few blocks full of single passenger vehicles. There are some underutilized streets - how about a loading zone on the very wide F Street by Gallery Place?
Our street network is for the use of all, including buses. Buses aren't something we should move out of the way to speed transportation: they are the transportation. Let's move cars out of the way to make room for the buses.
- Community stories show the shift to a walkable lifestyle
- Young kids try to assault me while biking
- Focus transportation on downtown or neighborhoods?
- Metro bag searches aren't always optional
- Endless zoning update delay hurts homeowners
- DDOT agrees to repave 15th Street cycle track
- Where is downtown Prince George's County?