This is the seventh project on my 12-item Christmas
wish list for DC biking projects.
#7 Utilizing the bike lane on the south side of the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge
Status: Mentioned in the DC Bike plan
The Theodore Roosevelt Bridge from Rosslyn to DC near the Kennedy Center has pedestrian lanes on both the upstream and downstream sides of the bridge. The upstream lane connects the new Kennedy Center Trail from G St and Virginia Ave NW to the Mount Vernon Trail. [Unfortunately there's no way to go directly to TR Island NP though the trail lane goes directly over it - but that's a different subject]
On the downstream side is another lane that is sadly unusable. Adding a pedestrian lane to a bridge is often difficult and expensive. Even the new Wilson bridge will only have one lane. So to have a lane that's not used is just bad business.
From the DC side it starts where Independance Avenue, Route 50 and I-66 meet and on the Virginia side it stops in the highway medians that make up the intercahge of I-66, Jefferson Davis Highway and George Washington Parkway. Here's a map that shows it. There are at-grade crossings on the DC side, but across very busy streets.
A bridge over Independence Avenue would connect the bridge to West Potomac Park; and a trail and bridge would connect the Virginia side to the Iwo Jima Memorial. See this map. Alternatively, the trail could be connected to the Mt. Vernon trail again without crossing over the GW Parkway.
And while we're at it, it would nice to improve the railings along both sides from the 12 inch high rails to something shoulder high, like what one sees on the 14th Street Bridge.