Reporting on pedestrian life in the D.C. area

Come talk about how to green the Anacostia Metro station

February 13, 2012 - 10:45 AM
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(Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Last August, Mayor Vince Gray joined the director of the District Department of Transportation and officials from the EPA to announce an initiative to green the Anacostia Metro station, which serves about 8,000 people in Southeast D.C. The project will focus on three intersections near the Metro station and seems to be an eventual victory for the neighborhood's drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists. We're talking better sidewalks. We're talking more trees. In August, officials suggested a design charrette and more meetings would happen in early 2012, and D.C., these meetings have arrived right on schedule.

The D.C. government has announced that the community meeting process will begin today. The goal is, according to DDOT, "designing a public space that connects the Metro station to neighborhood assets, makes the area safer for pedestrians and bicyclists, better manages local stormwater and complements upcoming economic development projects in the community." That sounds like a discussion worth having.

Come to the Matthews Memorial Baptist Church tonight for an introductory presentation and Wednesday for an open house:

Monday, February 13, 2012
6:30 pm to 8 pm
Introduction Presentation

Wednesday, February 15, 2012
12:30 pm to 2 pm
Community Open House

The EPA is partnering with five of America's capital cities to help with a variety of greening initiatives this year. Improving the transportation and pedestrian culture around the Anacostia Metro station is, of course, only one dimension among many in triggering development in the blocks around Anacostia. Other signs are promising, with the relocation of Homeland Security to the former Saint Elizabeth's campus expected to bring about 14,000 jobs to Anacostia by 2014, according to the D.C. Economic Partnership's 2011 Neighborhood Profiles. There's also the proposed Anacostia streetcar line expected to emerge in the next few years. Let's hope these other projects benefit from a greener, safer, more pedestrian-friendly Anacostia Metro in the couple years to come. The improvements fit into a broader D.C. commitment to streetscaping and plenty of trees in all the city's wards.

These improvements may also have an effect on broader community issues, such as the amount of crime reported at the Anacostia Metro station. In the second and third quarters of last year, Anacostia Metro ranked among the top 10 stations for major crimes.

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