Wednesday, February 13, 2013

DCBAC Fiscal Year 2013 Oversight Hearing Scheduled

Lane / Markings
Photo by Ranpuba on Flickr
The D.C. Bicycle Advisory Council is scheduled to provide testimony at its Fiscal Year 2012-2013 Performance Oversight Hearing before the Committee on Transportation and the Environment, chaired by Council member Mary M. Cheh (Ward 3).

The hearing will begin at 11:00a, Monday, March 4, 2013 in hearing room 120 within the John A. Wilson Building, 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW. Also scheduled to testify are the Pedestrian Advisory Council and the District Department of Transportation (DDOT).

The purpose of the Performance Oversight Hearings are to allow the Council to ask questions regarding the current operations of District agencies, committees, and other government organizations during the current fiscal year, which began October 1, 2012.

This hearing provides an opportunity for residents discuss bicycling-related issues before Council and the opportunity to ask DDOT questions about bicycle infrastructure or policy. One of the more effective ways to get more bicycle infrastructure built and to ensure that consideration of bicycling is included in the District planning process is to testify. If you do not which to testify, simply appearing in the gallery helps show the Council and the public how important bicycling has become for the District.

BAC encourages bicyclists attend this public hearing and tell policy makers the importance of  safe streets for bicycling. If you cannot testify or attend, please let us know what you think about what BAC has done in fiscal year 2013 and what you'd like the District government to do for bicycling this year in the comments section below.

Persons wishing to testify about the performance of any of the foregoing agencies may contact Ms. Aukima Benjamin, Committee on Transportation and the Environment at 724-8062 or e-mail her at

Persons wishing to testify are encouraged, but not required, to submit written testimony in advance of each hearing to Nyasha Smith, Secretary to the Council of the District of Columbia; Suite 5; John A. Wilson Building; 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW; Washington, DC 20004. If you are unable to testify, you may submit a written statement to the above address.


  1. You asked for comments on what can be improved by DC gov in the next year:

    Here are two very specific suggestions, but they probably apply more generally as well:

    - Improve the traffic light sequencing: in particular on the two-way bike lane on 15th street! At present, the sequencing is so, that bikers are forced to stop at each intersection between P St and K St when commuting into town in the morning. In other words, if you wait for the green light at P St, you will reach Rhode Island just as the light turns red again, same as you hit Massachusetts, and again M St, and finally K St. The frustration of just getting one block ahead at a time leads to majority of cyclists to run the intersection as the traffic light just turns to red. About once a week, I see a near accident. Either a cyclist about to get hit by a oncoming left turning traffic (which has the green light), or a cyclist about to run over a pedestrian (having the green light). While the cyclists are at fault in both cases, the extremely inconvenient phasing of the traffic signals is no doubt fostering this behavior. It is basically a race from each intersection to the next as one may just make it across just as the signal turns if one is fast enough.

    - Safe entry to the Beach Drive needs to be improved: in particular for those trying to enter from Petworth via Piney Branch Parkway. Petworth is home for a growing number of young families, many of which cycle and/or would like to push their strollers for a walk along the Rock Creek. However, the sidewalk along Piney Branch Pkwy is a) incomplete with only a fraction paved, and b) in a terrible state (i.e. wall collapsing). Piney Branch Parkway itself is so narrow that it is dangerous for cyclists to actually ride on the street. However, the sidewalk is either non-existent or too narrow to allow for both, pedestrians and cyclists, again creating dangerous situations. Further, for cyclists or pedestrians entering Rock Creek via Piney Branch Pkwy there is no safe crossing over Beach Drive to allow them to access the bike/pedestrian trial on the other side of Beach Drive. Since there is a 3-way stop sign intersection at Beach Drive/Piney Branch that brings traffic to a halt, it would be ideal to create a safe pedestrian cross walk right there and improve the path until it connects with the Beach Drive trail at the bride a bit up further north. Apparently, the improvement of Piney Branch Pkwy is planned, but this project has been dragging on for several years now and no visible work has started yet.

    1. I agree about safe pedestrian access along Piney Branch Parkway to Petworth. It's dangerous.


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