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I didn't know the Committee of 100 was a Tea Party affiliate: http://motherjones.com/politics/2010/11/tea-party-agenda-21-un-sustainable-development

I just don't understand the Com100. They say they are for the original L'enfant vision, but how is that inconsistent with livability? There were no cars, and the city was a fraction of its size, at that time.

There is a map of DC in approx 1890 down the hall from my office. There is nothing but farmland just beyond what we would now consider "downtown." Connecticut Ave stops at Rock Creek Park. There are canals and creeks going through the downtown.

I haven't followed this close enough to have a firm opinion, but I thought this long comment by bike commuter Alex1207 over at GGW was valuable:

I would disagree about Tregoning. While I may not agree with 100 % of her views, she is atleast qualified for the position and intimately knowledgable about her job.

Gabe Klein certainly needs to go. He is no more qualified to head a DOT than I am qualifed to fly to Mars.

The guy worked at a failing car rental agency, then worked as a DC street vendor whose claim to fame is that he catered then Mayor Fenty's birthday party.

A couple months later, he was all of a sudden head of DDOT.

One minute slinging hotdogs at lunch, then next minute in charge of a city agency with a ~200 million dollar budget and billions of capital projects in the pipeline. Him in that role is astoundingly ridiculous.

He has failed at every single DDOT endeavor he has his name attached too.

The "speed bumps for anyone who wants one" policy ended up an embarrasing failure after NW DC council members started getting thousands of complaints of speed bumps appearing on their streets without study or warning, many of which were then removed.

The Street Car debacle has drawn national ridicule. A completely unplanned (until this March, 7 years after they bought street cars and started putting in tracks) and unfunded multibillion dollar program that relied almost entirely on federal money they "knew" they were going to get...yet didn't get. And this is from the Obama Administration which is the most transit friendly of any in the past 25 years. Our street cars have been delivered and sitting in storage for ~2 years now, and the tracks they were supposed to go on are 3 years behind schedule.

His transportation policy of "Bike Lanes, Nothing Else" has been an overwhelmingly expensive and embarrasing faux pas for him. Putting in bike lanes anywhere, without the benefit of forethought or study, haphazardly repainting any and all street without thinking of the danger to either cyclists, pedestrians or drivers. The PA avenue bike lanes that went in without planning or study, only to be ripped out and completely redesigned DAYS before they were to open. Klein himself admitted they hadn't really thought about the level of conflict it would create on one of the regions busiest streets. I say this as a regular, daily commuting cyclist.

I could go on for days, but there is a reason one picks someone with qualification for a job like this. Sonmeone with some level of transportation, engineering, construction or management experience. Fenty chose a street vendor and the result was predictable.

Replace him now.

(yes, I did see what WashCycle says about Fenty's role in the Pa. Ave. bike lanes)

Many of Alex1907's complaints seem to predate Klein. If the streetcar is 7 years behind schedule, and he's been on the job for 20 months, how is that his fault.

Ah, ok. So doesn't like speed humps. Fine, though lots of folks who aren't glued to the drivers seat *do* like them. A lot.

He thinks (though provides no evidence whatsoever, and I certainly can't find anything in the national press) that streetcars have "drawn national ridicule".

And it's clear he hasn't a clue as to the history of PA Ave bike lanes, since as washcycle pointed out, pulling out the original bike lanes was a purely political manuever by Fenty, in which he overrode the traffic engineers design at the behest of a vocal bunch of drivers.

Extremely valuable that.

Well, plopping down a bunch of speed bumps without properly preparing for various community impacts and then having to rip a bunch of them out sounds like something an official without a professional background in some kind of public administration would do. Just because he likes bikes doesn't make him golden!

Streetcars are the shiny new toys of the moment. Sometimes they could make sense, some lines are laughably underused (more humorous if you're not part of the community paying for them). And didn't DC just lose a Tiger II grant competition that included streetcar expansion? Was Gabe Klein here when that happened?

Again, not familiar with the whole spiel, but no need to rush the beatification of St. Gabe.

Where did DDOT remove speed bumps?

DC did fail to win a TIGER II grant for streetcars. So did just about everybody else who applied for one. There were a lot of empty pockets chasing each dollar. Our lack of congressional representation couldn't have helped.

Christopher....do you live in DC?

You say "Streetcars are the shiny new toys of the moment. Sometimes they could make sense, some lines are laughably underused "

Of course they're underused. They don't exist yet.

Why is the Committee of 100 so important?

The singular goal was to produce another symbol of the “livability” agenda and to declare victory despite the created tension among pedestrians, bikers, drivers, and public transit operators.


Translation:

All this emphasis on "livability" forced myself and some other drivers to stop ignoring pedestrians and bicyclists and made us aware of a tension that we never knew existed.

Re speedhumps being removed, I'm just going by what biker commuter Alex1207 stated in his post at GGW.

JJJ, I live in Manassas. I've worked in downtown DC most years since 1981, and expect (hope) to start doing that again within a month or so. As for underused streetcars that don't exist, I was referring to projects elsewhere in the country.

I'm not a fan of the Metro extension to Dulles either. It's massively expensive for what it does, and I can't for the life of me figure out how it won't turn the Orange line into a railed parking lot. The kind of bus system that could have been created for that kind of money boggles the mind. But--not as glamorous.

Well, I'm not sure Alex1207 is a reliable source of information considering how much his rant is riddled with errors.

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