Advocating for Streets That Work for Everyone

Kids on scooters at Open Streets.

The streets and public spaces that connect communities influence so much about how people choose to get around and where they feel comfortable. Whether we walk, bike, ride transit, or drive to get places, those streets should meet everyone’s needs, especially people walking and biking.

Join us for a workshop on advocating for streets that work for you. In partnership with the Hispanic Access Foundation, this free virtual workshop is designed to help celebrate the inaugural Latino Advocacy Week. We will dive into some of the key issues and possible solutions for making accessible and inclusive streets, plus identify some key first steps to make streets work better for your community. There will also be time to answer your questions and share your own experiences. Upon registering, we’ll send you a link and instructions for how to join the Zoom webinar. 

Register

The workshop will include captions. If you need accommodations or have questions about access or the event, send us an email at patricia.miguel@waba.org.

Tell NPS to make the Memorial Circle improvements permanent!

In November, 2020, The National Park Service (George Washington Memorial Parkway) completed several safety improvements to Memorial Circle. The goals of the project are to reduce risks at key locations within the corridor and to reduce conflicts between trail, walkway, and roadway users—where approximately 600 crashes were recorded in the area between 2006 and 2012. The project includes several safety upgrades for trail users including:

  • Higher visibility crosswalks
  • Relocating trail crossings
  • Lane reductions
  • New signage and rapid flashing beacons 
  • Clearer lane markings
  • Repaved road surface

WABA is pleased with the changes and believes that they are effective, but we know there is still enormous room for making these trail intersections truly safe for everyone (like by installing controlled trail crossings). The National Park Service will now monitor the effectiveness of the changes before deciding to keep the improvements and make them permanent or remove them. Due to the new merge pattern, drivers are complaining that they have to slow down for people’s safety. 

We do not want these complaints to undo the changes that have been made, so we urge you to sign this petition to NPS asking to make these safety improvements permanent! 

Ask VA Legislators to pass The Bicycle Safety Act now!

With the VA General Assembly set to wrap up it’s work this session, there have been a number of bills that are making their way towards the finish line. 

WABA has been in collaboration with partners and networks on the ground to monitor and track the progress of these bills, and we want to highlight a key bill that needs your support as it nears its final vote! The Bicycle Safety Act (HB2262 / SB1263) would require drivers to fully change lanes to pass people biking, allow cyclists to ride two abreast in a lane, and permit people on bicycles to treat stop signs as yield signs. The bill is modeled after Delaware law that has proven safety benefits!

Tell the Mayor and DC Council we need a bold DDOT Director

With the Former DDOT Director Jeff Marootian stepping down to join the Biden-Harris Administration, the Mayor now has to select and the DC Council has to confirm a new leader to tackle the pressing transportation issues ahead. 

The new DDOT Director will be entering at a time where bold and transformative leadership is necessary to ensure that we have safe and equitable infrastructure development in the District. 

Take a moment to tell the Mayor and DC Council, we need a new DDOT Director who prioritizes completing our trials network, developing a connected and protected bike lane network, and ensures safe infrastructure investments are equitably distributed throughout the District.   

New Data: Most DC voters support protected bike lanes

This past December, WABA partnered with Data for Progress on a citywide poll on biking issues. We have some good news: 

  • 79% of likely voters in DC would support a protected bike lane network, including on neighborhood streets, if it meant bike riders could ride in the street and be safe from traffic.
  • 73% of likely voters in DC support adding more protected bike lanes around the city.
  • 63% of likely D.C. voters would bike more around Washington, D.C. if they felt safer biking on the road. 

As the District continues to seek ways to meet its climate and safety goals, a protected bike lane network is a popular solution that can be implemented on a short timeline. Let’s go! 

If you are into spreadsheets you can take a look at the numbers here, but the key takeaway is that this support for a better bike network is consistent across race, gender, and political party. 

When the D.C. economy starts to open up after the pandemic has passed, we need to ensure that DC residents have safe infrastructure to commute on—we need to start building more protected bike lanes now!

Tell your legislators you support MC 4-21: Transferring automated Traffic Enforcement to the Department of Transportation

Police are not experts on street design or what makes a street safe for all of its users.  That expertise resides in the County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) and therefore, the management and implementation of the County’s automated enforcement program should be located within MCDOT, not the county police department.  To resolve this problem,  the State Delegates and Senators who represent Montgomery County are considering a bill, MC 4-21, that would authorize moving the automated traffic enforcement program from the County Police Department to MCDOT.  The County Delegation will vote on this bill on or around December 17. 

Please email your state Senator and Delegates telling them you support the passage of MC 4-21.

Take Action: Connecticut Ave Needs Continuous, Safe, Protected Bike Lanes

The District Department of Transportation is considering removing the Connecticut Avenue reversible lane and redesigning the street from Chevy Chase to Woodley Park. We have a real opportunity to make the street safer, comfortable for biking, and a more vibrant, livable main street. Now is the time to roll up your sleeves and speak up, before this rare opportunity passes.

Send a message to DDOT’s project team insisting that to be successful, a future Connecticut Avenue must include continuous, safe, and protected bike lanes. Start with the template below, but take a moment to make it personal with a short story.

For more detail on the study, including design concepts, see the documents linked on the project page.

Fenton St. Protected Bike Lane Virtual Meeting

Potential design for Fenton Street Protected Bike Lane in Silver Spring, MD

Since January 2020, Montgomery County Department of Transportation staff have been busy planning the final major piece of downtown Silver Spring’s protected bicycle network: a protected bike lane on Fenton Street. On November 18, MCDOT is hosting a virtual public meeting to present findings from their study and to share design alternatives for what protected bike lanes on Fenton St could look like.

Please join us to learn about the project and help us send a clear message that Silver Spring needs a bikeable and walkable Fenton Street.

  1. We want to keep you in the loop and stay in touch before and after the meeting. Use the form below to let us know you’ll be there and opt into updates on the project.
  2. To attend this virtual meeting, MCDOT is asking that you register in advance. Once you hit submit on the form below, you will be redirected to MCDOT’s registration page. Click here to register on MCDOT’s website

MCDOT has posted the full study report and extensive plan sets on the project website for review before the meeting.