Two months ago, cyclist Ned Gaylin was killed while crossing Little Falls Parkway on the Capital Crescent Trail, which prompted a safety review of the crossing (and a weird press conference/enforcement blitz by the police). Next month, as a result of the review, Montgomery County will narrow the road to one lane in each direction; add warning signs, flex posts and pavement markings and lower the speed limit from 35mph to 25mph. It's so absolutely the right decision and came so quickly and is so NOT what usually happens that it's refreshingly surprising. But wait, there's more
County officials also plan to review 300 locations across the county to make long-term safety changes to places where paved trails come into contact with cars and major intersections. Changes could include more crosswalks, pedestrian-activated signals and redesigning intersections.
Also, department staff will “conduct additional studies in the vicinity of this intersection to identify a safe long-term solution to accommodate both vehicles and trail users. The long-term solution may involve additional traffic pattern changes and trail connectors."
WABA has a much longer and detailed post on this.
The county has since then announced that charges would not be filed against the driver in the Gaylin crash.
“Investigators concluded that Gaylin entered the roadway, illegally, after failing to stop at a posted stop sign on the Capital Crescent Trail,” [Capt. Tom Didone, director of Montgomery County police department’s traffic division] said, reading from a prepared statement about the collision. He said witnesses told police Gaylin “proceeded into the crosswalk without remotely stopping.”
“Further, the investigation proved that the driver of the vehicle, Nils Rudelius, was traveling lawfully on Little Falls Parkway before the collision,” Didone said.
“This is a tragic case where two senior citizens crashed at an intersection that has had some issues in the past,” Ramon Korionoff, a spokesman for the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office said.
In a somewhat related story, the County is investigating whether or not recent construction carried out by Oursiman Honda immediately adjacent to the trail encroaches on the trail. It's a pretty tight squeeze either way.
Photo by Andrew Metcalf
I have no idea where the property line is, but this is certainly encroaching into the trail's shy space. Someone made a mistake.