Vision Zero Act for Street Safety

ANC 6A Report – July 2019

833

Chair Amber Gove (6A04) called the Advisory Neighborhood (ANC) 6A meeting to order at Miner Elementary School, 601 15th St. NE, with Commissioners Mike Soderman (6A03), Brian Alcorn (6A08), Ruth Ann Hudson (6A05), Marie Claire Brown (6A01), Phil Toomajian (6A02) and Stephanie Zimny (6A06) in attendance. Commissioner Sondra Phillips-Gilbert (6A07) was absent.

Vision Zero Omnibus Amendment Act of 2019
Citing long held concerns for the safety of DC streets, Councilmember Charles Allen shared some of the items proposed in the Vision Zero Omnibus Amendment Act of 2019 which he roughly broke into three categories: improved infrastructure, stronger enforcement and building an equitable city.

First, under infrastructure, the Act would require new developments to employ a District Department of Transportation (DDOT) approved curb management plan to better handle vehicles making short stops such as delivery and ride share vehicles that often disrupt traffic and interrupt bike lanes. The Act also calls for installing sidewalks across the entire city, giving pedestrians a safe path to walk along roadways. Though few such locations exist in 6A, in some areas around DC sidewalks come to an abrupt end leaving pedestrians without a safe and easily traversable route. Additionally, the Act would make all residential four-way intersections in DC all-way stops by default as opposed to requiring ANC’s and residents to request additional stop signs be installed on their neighborhood streets.

Regarding enforcement, the Vision Zero Act would ban all right hand turns at red lights across the entire city hopefully minimizing the number of pedestrians and cyclists hit by drivers neglecting to fully look before turning. It would also lower the speed limit to 20 mph, down from 25 mph, as lower speed collisions have been shown to yield fewer or less serious injuries. The Act also proposes to fine contractors that neglect to fully restore crosswalks and bike lanes after their construction work has been completed up to $10,000 per day. In addition, new residents to DC or those renewing their driver’s licenses would be required to take a written driving test to would ensure that at least local drivers are aware of DC’s traffic laws.

Towards creating a more equitable city, the legislation would require that every two years, the city would reevaluate and update plans, like MoveDC, to account for what is or is not working. The legislation also calls for a Complete Streets policy specifically regarding street design meaning that all future changes must consider every potential user of that road. Lastly, the Act would create the Citizen Enforcement Pilot that utilizes the “How’s My Driving” app. This would allow a small number of trained citizens to report traffic safety violations such as cars parked in “No Parking” zones, via their smartphones. The city would then review the submission and if deemed in violation, would issue a ticket through the mail. The app is currently being beta tested by approximately 1,200 users.

Emily Dalphy, DDOT Transportation Engineer for the Vision Zero Division, spoke on DDOT’s interim safety improvement plan for Florida Ave. NE from 2nd Street to the starburst intersection. Between 3rd Street to West Virginia Ave NE, they will be installing a 2-way cycle track on the south side of Florida Avenue NE and reducing the travel lanes to two in each direction with a center turning lane. DDOT will be piloting a road diet between West Virginia Ave to 14th NE, reducing traffic to a single travel lane in each direction, adding a center turning lane in some locations and permanent parking in others as well as one-way protected bike lanes on both sides of the street. More information is available by visiting ddot.dc.gov/page/florida-avenue-ne-multimodal-transportation-project.

Committee Recommendations

Transportation and Public Space (TPS)

  1. ANC 6A will send a letter to DDOT requesting bikeshare station expansions or new locations at the intersection of Maryland Avenue, 10th Street and E Street NE; 11th and C Streets NE; Kingsman Field on 1300 block of D Street NE; 15th and East Capitol Streets NE and the North side of East Capitol Street NE in front of Eastern High School.
  2. ANC 6A will send a letter to DDOT in support of application for access across public space in the alley behind 1519 Constitution Ave. NE.
  3. ANC 6A will send a letter of support to the DDOT Public Space Committee for the sidewalk café application (1025 H St. NE [#10726471]), subject to the following conditions:
    • The applicant only operates the sidewalk café space during those hours stipulated in the Settlement Agreement.
    • The applicant will take reasonable efforts to contain noise within the sidewalk café space.
    • The applicant will only use the sidewalk café space for food and drink service, and not for any playing of music or for any other use.
    • If the applicant installs fencing around the sidewalk café area, it shall be consistent with DDOT specifications and the fencing enclosing other sidewalk cafés.
    • The applicant will use easily moveable chairs and tables that shall be moved to the side and locked up when not in use.
    • The applicant will ensure no trash container of any sort will be stored anywhere on public space, including on the sidewalk café itself.
    • The applicant will regularly maintain the adjacent tree boxes and keep all areas in front of the business and within the sidewalk café area clean, including the adjacent sidewalk and street gutter.
  4. ANC 6A will send a letter of support to DD0T for the revised plans as presented by Rosedale Development LLC for alley lots 179-186 behind 410-417 17th Street NE [#324283].
  5. ANC 6A will protest the insufficient notice period (public space application [#332497] at 1537 Gales St. NE) and request that the case remain open until the ANC has a chance to consider it at its September 19, 2019 meeting.

Alcohol Beverage Licensing (ABL)

  1. ANC 6A will continue its protest of RedRocks (1348 H St. NE) request for a change of hours for alcohol service and live entertainment unless a settlement agreement is submitted that limits the rooftop deck hours to 11:00 pm on weeknights and 12:00 am on weekends and prohibits the use of any entertainment on the roof deck.
  2. ANC 6A will continue its protest of 12Twelve DC/Kyss Kyss (1210- 1212 H St. NE) request for a sidewalk cafe endorsement unless a Settlement Agreement is submitted that limits the hours of operation on the sidewalk cafe to 11:00 pm on weeknights and 12:00 am on weekends.
  3. ANC 6A approved the enclosed settlement agreement with The Pursuit (1025 H St. NE) in lieu of a protest. If The Pursuit does not sign the settlement agreement by the petition date, the ANC will protest its license application.
  4. ANC 6A will take no action regarding the request for a change of hours by On the Rocks (1242 H St. NE).
  5. ANC 6A will protest the license application of Daru (1451 Maryland Ave. NE) unless the ABL Committee recommends no action at its July 2019 meeting.
  6. ANC 6A approved the amended settlement agreement with Dangerously Delicious DC, LLC, t/a Dangerously Delicious DC (1339 H St. NE) (ABRA # 087422) and withdraw the license protest.
  7. ANC 6A approved the amended Settlement Agreement with Smith Commons DC LLC t/a Smith Commons (1245 H St. NE) (ABRA # 084598), and withdraw the license protest.

Other Business

  1. ANC 6A will send a letter to the D.C. Department of Small Local Business Development expressing our support for the continued efforts of the Benning Road Clean Team.

 

Visit www.anc6a.org for calendar of events, changes of date/venue, agendas and other information.