As I alluded to in the previous post, it appears that the design plans for the Metropolitan Branch Trail have again undergone a significant change–albeit without any public disclosure.
Above is the proposed Trail layout from Randolph to the New York Ave Bridge as provided in the draft plans on the metbranchtrail.com website. As you can see, there is an access point at R St and one just north of the Pepco building. Evidently, the R St access point is now the last access point south to the Metro Station.
The reason I learned of this change is upon my pestering of the MBT folks at DDOT to construct a temporary access path along the proposed path in the draft layout (just north of the Pepco building). Being told that DDOT would need permission from Pepco to construct such, I inquired why, since they were supposedly ceding the land to the District for this access point anyways.
DDOT informed me that this access point was no longer part of the plan.
First issue: DDOT has in their hands the final design plans of the MBT, yet they have not published the drawings or even listed the modifications from the original draft layout on the metbranchtrail.com or DDOT websites.
Second issue: Residents south or R St as well as XM employees will have to walk several blocks out of their way to use the R St access point. As this will result in longer travel times than simply crossing New York and Florida Avenues, many will skip the Trail–preventing pedestrian traffic at this intersection from their full lowered potential.
We’ll have to see what the next MBT “surprise” is….