After a review of a pair of bike cut-throughs on 44th Street NW in Friendship Heights, part of a bicycle boulevard project, DDOT has decided to move forward with them - although with slight modifications.
During the review DDOT heard several concerns and plans to address each of them.
Residents noted that with the current design, cars already drive over the diverters, and that cut-throughs would only exacerbate this problem. So DDOT plans to couple the cut-throughs with other veritcle elements like higher curbs, bollards, plantings and landscaping to make them virtually imprenable to cars. DC Fire and EMS have said that they don't need access through them, so that is not an issue. Motorcycles won't be physically prevented from using the cut-throughs, but DDOT says that few motrocycles go through now on the sidewalk, and they don't expect that number to go up much if at all. The four foot width of the cut-throughs, which some thought were two wide, are set at the recommended guideline width allowing for safe usage and wider bikes - but too narrow for cars.
Some people said that cyclists currently have full access via the sidewalk, but DDOT said that sidewalk cycling is a safety concern and offers cyclists less utlity.
Others were concerned that 44th has too much traffic for safe bicycing or that other streets were better. In short, DDOT disagreed, but they decided to add signs near the diverter to warn drivers. Another concern expressed was that cutting the diverters would encourage more biking on 44th. DDOT said that was kind of the point.
So DDOT will proceed with the plan, incorporating some of the changes identified by the ANC and durinig community outreach. Below is a two-channel diverter design.