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Irving Street Closure

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  • Anne Theisen
    Dear Lars, DAY TWO: Still no work being done on Irving Street. In fact I drove down the entire length of Irving Street between 16th & 14th Streets, NW at 2:30
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 1, 2006
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      Dear Lars,

      DAY TWO: Still no work being done on Irving Street. In fact I drove down
      the entire length of Irving Street between 16th & 14th Streets, NW at 2:30
      this morning.

      I also drove around the neighborhood and noticed some problems with
      signage:

      1. The detour sign for southbound traffic (nice, big, light up sign - good
      choice) was placed very near the intersection and was partially obstructed
      by trees. It was difficult to see until I got right up to the
      intersection. During busy traffic, I could see someone missing it and
      turning down Irving Street.

      2. The no left turn sign is still up at the intersection of 16th & Harvard
      Streets. (There was a large light up sign at the intersection of Harvard
      Street saying no left turn, except buses 6:00 AM - 7:00 PM. Nice.)

      3. There was no detour sign for northbound traffic on 16th Street.

      4. There were no signs posted for bus re-routings.

      5. There were no signs posted on 16th Street at the intersections of Monroe
      Street and Meridian Place, nor at the intersection of 14th and Newton
      Streets, as we were told to expect. We were also told that signs would be
      placed at other locations as well. I drove through the community and saw
      no such signs. Can you share where those locations might be?

      When can we expect this to actually get underway? Hopefully, these delays
      will not mean that Donatelli & Klein will receive an extension on their
      permit to close the street.

      Thank you for following up on this. I look forward to hearing from you
      soon.

      Sincerely, Anne Theisen ANC1A05
      Chair ANC1A Transportation Committee



      -----Original Message-----
      From: Etzkorn, Lars (DDOT) [mailto:lars.etzkorn@...]
      Sent: Tuesday, October 31, 2006 9:34 AM
      To: 'Anne Theisen'; Michelle Purciau; chris@...
      Cc: Schwartz, Carol (COUNCIL); Jack McKay; Gregg Edwards; Mason, Kenneth
      (DDOT); Jackson, Tyrone (DDOT); Jelen, Michael (DDOT); Wiktor, Denise
      (DDOT); Etzkorn, Lars (DDOT); Noble, Douglas (DDOT)
      Subject: Irving Street, NW


      Anne, I too am surprised work did not commence on Irving Street, NW, as we
      expected last night. I was at 1400 Irving Street, NW, yesterday afternoon
      and did not hear otherwise. By copy of this e-mail I am asking Chris
      Donatelli for an explanation.

      Please know street closures for utility work are only most reluctantly and
      rarely approved by DDOT. Our preference is to maintain traffic flow.
      Doing
      so, however, in this case was the best means to expedite the work, which
      involves eleven lateral cuts to utility mains under the far side of the
      street from 1400 Irving Street, NW. We did require the work to occur at
      night, so traffic flow could be maintained during the day, with loud noise
      restricted to before 10 p.m.

      As you continue to have operational questions, perhaps it would be good to
      meet on site with representatives from Donatelli Development, its
      contractors and DDOT to address your questions. Please let me know if you
      would like me to arrange such a meeting and what times would be good for
      you.

      Thanks.


      -----Original Message-----
      From: Anne Theisen [mailto:aktheisen@...]
      Sent: Tuesday, October 31, 2006 6:40 AM
      To: Michelle Purciau
      Cc: Carol Schwartz; Jack McKay; Gregg Edwards; kenneth.mason@...;
      keith.swann@...; Tyrone Jackson (DDOT); michael.jelen@...; Denise
      Wiktor; lars.etzkorn@...
      Subject: Irving Street

      Dear Ms. Purcieu,

      I am writing to ask for clarification in what to expect on Irving Street.

      I have heard from Donatelli & Klein, Councilmember Jim Graham, and Lars
      Etzkorn, that we could expect Irving Street to be shut down between Hiatt
      Place and 14th Street, effective last evening.

      The street was open last night.

      I have heard from others in DDOT that no permit has been issued for this
      closure and that further evaluation needs to be done before such a decision
      can be made.

      Can you please clarify the necessity of a complete closure of this major
      community artery? No information has been shared with the community, to my
      knowledge, about why the utility upgrade work being performed by Donatelli
      & Klein can only be accomplished with the complete closure of this portion
      of Irving Street.

      Our concern is that there are very few east-bound routes for traffic
      through Mt. Pleasant and Columbia Heights. The proposed detour that brings
      east-bound traffic to Harvard Street is less than optimal, because left
      turns (taking traffic east-bound) are prohibited there. Lars has told us
      that the left turn restriction would be removed. However, is that there is
      good reason for this restriction. Columbia Road also crosses this
      intersection, and Mt. Pleasant Street feeds into it just to the north.
      Allowing traffic to turn left could cause severe congestion. I do not
      believe that this route will be able to accommodate the traffic from such
      an Irving Street detour without additional modifications of the
      intersection.

      The result will be that traffic will come to the residential streets. At
      present, these side streets are already seeing an increase in traffic due
      to the construction. The intersections along 14th Street at Park Road,
      Monroe Street, and Meridian Place are already congested. These streets
      cannot accommodate a significant increase in automobile traffic.

      And they most certainly cannot accommodate truck traffic. Past experience,
      however, has show us that when Irving Street is closed off, the smaller
      streets get truck traffic, as well. These streets are narrow. The result
      is damage to the personal vehicles of residents who have parked their cars
      on the street.

      Can you provide assurances to us that, in the event this closure is
      unavoidable, strong measures (such as retiming the lights at the
      intersection of 16th & Harvard Streets to allow for better traffic flow or
      creating a left turn only lane) will be taken to ensure that the detour
      routes will be used and residential streets do not experience truck
      traffic? In the event that automobile drivers chose not to follow the
      detour routes, opting for side streets instead, can DDOT or Donatelli &
      Klein place flagmen at some intersections along 14th Street to ensure that
      traffic is not backed up and residents unable to get off their streets?

      We certainly understand that some sacrifices and inconveniences will
      continue to occur as a result of the construction near the Columbia Heights
      Metro Station. We have experienced it fully and cooperated with grumbling
      understanding during the installation of the Metro, during the renovation
      of the Tivoli, during the construction of new businesses and new housing.
      But up to now, we have been informed of the need for certain choices,
      informed of what to expect as a result of these choices, and given some
      opportunity to comment on our perceptions of whether or not things will
      work.

      With regards to the closure of Irving Street, this has not happened. Can
      this be changed, as well?

      Thank you, Anne Theisen Commissioner ANC1A05
    • Anne Theisen
      Dear Neighbors, DDOT has instructed Donatelli & Klein to delay the closure of Irving Street (between Hiatt Place and 14th Street) until November 6th. The
      Message 2 of 2 , Nov 3, 2006
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        Dear Neighbors,

        DDOT has instructed Donatelli & Klein to delay the closure of Irving Street
        (between Hiatt Place and 14th Street) until November 6th. The developer
        must distribute flyers announcing the closure and detour. The flyers must
        be printed English and Spanish and distributed to the residents and
        businesses of the 1400 blocks of Irving Street, Park Road, Columbia Road,
        and Harvard Street, as well as 14th & 16th Streets between Columbia Road
        and Monroe Street. The developer is also working to meet the DDOT
        requirements about proper signage of the detours.

        If you have questions or concerns about this street closure or experience
        problems once it has occurred, please call Alice Kelly of DDOT at 671-2333.

        Please don't hesitate to call me, as well.

        Anne 202-328-2242
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