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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Rhode Island Metro Station Sidewalks and Staircase Improvements Needed

Recently it was brought to my attention that with the construction of the Rhode Island Station development there are no plans to improve the sidewalks and staircase to the metro station from Rhode Island Ave. I thought with such a large-scale construction project they would be improving the public space as well especially since they would be using them.

Below is my letter to Councilmember Thomas and I am encouraging everyone to write or call him in order to bring attention to this issue.

Here is his email address:
Here is his phone number: 202-439-5103

Dear Councilmember Thomas,

I wanted to write to you about a concern that I have regarding the current sidewalks and staircase that led to the Rhode Island Metro Station with relation to pedestrian safety. These sidewalks are very narrow and the staircase is narrow and in need of repair as well.

While I am excited about the construction that is going on for the Rhode Island Station development I feel that as part of this project we should be fixing the sidewalks and stairs. We are missing an opportunity to repair items for the betterment and safety of the whole community if we do not get this done as part of the current construction. The new development will increase the traffic to that metro station and site, so if the narrow sidewalk and stairs are not adequate and safe under current use it will even be worse with increased use.

I know that the new pedestrian bridge is scheduled to be built from the Metropolitan Branch Trail to the metro station and that will help pedestrians and I encourage you to help move that project as long as well. But that bridge will not help people coming from the other direction to the metro or the new retail/apartments.

Please consider using your influence and helping to correct the problems with the stairs and sidewalks as a part of the current scope of construction that is taking place.


  1. Very good point - thanks for bringing this up.

    Will people coming toward the metro from 4th/Rhode Island (where I understand a Capital Bikeshare stand is going eventually) be able to use the Met Branch trail? (I can't picture where the Met Branch ped bridge is going, exactly) If not, they'll probably end up on the sidewalks, which makes the sidewalk improvement that much more necessary.

  2. The Met Branch Trail bridge is going up between where the trail entrance goes from the shopping center parking lot and where it goes over RI Ave as I understand it.

    The Capital Bikeshare location at 4th and RI Ave is up and it is located in front of the Pizzamart on 4th.