Comment on MD 355 Crossing Project, CIP 500722
Testimony Submitted to Montgomery County Dept. of Transportation, August 3, 2010
Presented by Richard Hoye on Behalf of the Action Committee for Transit
The following are ACT's comments regarding the latest presentation of alternatives for the MD 355 Crossing Project made on 7-20-10.
The Action Committee for Transit would like the Federal Transit Administration's presence on this NEPA study committee and that of the National Transportation Safety Board. The involvement of crucial mass transit systems as the major component of this project make these agencies participation crucial to an effective evaluation and alternatives design process.
Further, a critical element in the criteria has been omitted. That is the vulnerability of metrorail passengers to an accident or terrorist attack at the Medical Center Station Platform that could turn an unfortunate incident into a major tragedy. The data for this concenr is in the WMATA Medical Center Access Study.
Key question remain unanswered in the study:
What is the relative inducement to use transit related to the alternatives selected? The saving in time of travel for the use of a bank of high speed elevators in option 2B should produce an increase in Metrorail use by residents on the east side of Rockville Pike and for employees and visitors of Navy Med. This should be compared to the other options.
What is the effect on traffic from the different options? How would this compare to an option that included elevators on the east side of MD 355 and a surface crosswalk?
What effect on traffic speed will occur at the intersections to the north and south of the study intersection among the various options? Will pedestrian safety suffer as a result of some options by speeding non-rushour traffic?
What are the accepted practice and concerns for pedestrian and bicycle underpasses held by FHWA and ASSHTO?