Since January, 2003
            
 (a random before-and-after moment)
January 22, 2006
June 10, 2012
3rd Place at K, Looking West (see more)

This week DDOT released its Final Circulator Development Plan, which among many other items calls for the extension of the Union Station-Navy Yard route along M Street to the Southwest Waterfront, sometime in the next two years, a plan that already has funding from the DC Council.
I asked about the timeframe for the new service, and DDOT informed me that it is proposed for the summer or early fall of 2015, pending the receipt of new buses, which have already been ordered and are expected to arrive in late spring or early summer.
Of the 1,041 people who took this year's survey, 44 percent identified the Southwest Waterfront as one of three top areas to which Circulator service should expand. This page from the report gives additional metrics on the proposed expanded route.
The plan also calls for a "Union Station-Navy Yard Schedule and Span Pilot Study," that would provide additional evening and weekend service to see if ridership demand and the increasing population around the Navy Yard Metro station supports making the changes long-term. DDOT tells me that this study is expected to begin in the first half of 2015. Currently the route runs until 7 pm weekdays in winter months, and 9 pm in the summer months along with Saturday service and extended evening/Sunday service for Nationals games.
However, the report also recognizes that this line "in particular suffers from severe congestion around Union Station" and that DDOT is pursuing options to reroute this line.
One other nugget very deep in the 128-page report is that down the road, if and when the Convention Center/Southwest Waterfront line is reestablished, "additional analysis should be conducted to determine the potential of extending the Convention Center-Southwest route to the Navy Yard in lieu of extending the Union Station-Navy Yard route to Southwest."
Other service expansions on tap to appear between now and FY 2017 include the new National Mall route, a new National Cathedral-McPherson Square route, and three additional extensions: the Potomac Avenue-Skyline route to Congress Heights, the Union Station-Georgetown route to the Cathedral, and the Dupont-Georgetown-Rosslyn route to U Street and Howard University. In the distant future (FY2021-FY2024) there could possibly be a Dupont-Southwest Waterfront route.
Read the full plan for more detail than you probably ever wanted about the service and the expansion plans across the city, or just scan the Executive Summary if you're lazy. And if you want to receive updates without having to wait for me to get around to telling you, you can sign up for the DC Circulator Newsletter.
Comments (7)
   
 
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JES says: (12/10/14 5:32 PM)
Yes to increased hours. And yes, the line does suffer from some pretty wicked traffic issues, but so do most Circulator lines; I'm not sure where else you could reroute it, given how many people I see who actually take it to/from Union Station.

Also, I find it somewhat humorous that the "to be discontinued" part of the line isn't even right on that map; the bus makes its' turn on K St just past Parc Riverside; it doesn't go all the way up to I St like the map shows.


conngs0 says: (12/11/14 9:22 AM)
I find it interesting that 44 percent of those surveyed listed SW Waterfront as a desired destination for Circulator expansion. I could see that neighborhood becoming a destination when the PN Hoffman development is closer to completion and when the soccer stadium is finished, but not now. I wonder how many of those 44 percent just don't know the difference between Navy Yard and Waterfront.

As for the Navy Yard - Union Station Circulator route, I think the expansion to SW Waterfront is sensible just to create a direct shot between SW Waterfront and Eastern Market. However, I wonder about the wisdom of continuing to expand the Circulator routes. Won't the Circulator just become as inefficient and unreliable as Metrobus? I thought the point was to augment the existing system by providing short routes connecting key areas that aren't already directly connected.

This particular route is already impractical when it comes to actually traveling to/from Union Station - especially during rush hour. The congestion around Union Station is a problem, but the route itself also just travels too far east for it to be a consistent solution (ironically, the route is too "circular"). The traffic on Barrack's Row and then the six-plus blocks on Pennsylvania Avenue both add several minutes to the journey. It's actually faster to (if you're in any kind of shape) walk, bike, or take Metro to Union Station from Navy Yard.


JD says: (12/11/14 9:46 AM)
Because of the loss of the Convention Center/Waterfront Circulator, I think there was a *big* push in SW to make their desires known during this study period. That might have something to do with the numbers.

And all the problems with the US-NY route that you mention are also discussed in the report.

It'll all be fixed by that new Metro line coming down New Jersey from Union Station someday. :-)


JES says: (12/11/14 9:51 AM)
Faster to walk from Navy Yard to Union? You must experience some hella traffic then, lol. Faster to bike though, definitely.

That said, if you're going to Union Station at rush hour from here, wouldn't you just take metro? Sure there's a transfer, but headways at peak would mean that you'd get there a LOT faster. Whenever we take it all the way to Union, it's because we're traveling off-peak when traffic isn't that terrible.


conngs0 says: (12/11/14 10:29 AM)
Yeah, I've had super bad luck with traffic on the Circulator. But Union Station is only 1.6 miles from the Navy Yard Metro Station (and also, many people might live closer). So, at a reasonable pace, it's about a 30 minute walk? I've spent close to 45 minutes on the Circulator (not counting waiting for the bus).

And indeed, Metro is definitely the better option during rush hour specifically because of traffic. But again, isn't at least one of the points of the Circulator to be a shortcut to help alleviate traffic on Metro during those peak hours? I think the Circulator is great. But if it just becomes a shiny red version of Metrobus, I'm worried it will lose its usefulness.


conngs0 says: (12/11/14 10:32 AM)
Honestly, I don't have enough confidence in the policymakers to think that the Metro 2040 plan is anything more than pie-in-the-sky, but it sure makes a lot of sense - especially the line down NJ Avenue from Union Station. If even a healthy portion of that is included in the Olympics bid, I'd be a lot more supportive of having the Games in the DC area.


Westnorth says: (12/18/14 12:12 PM)
People generally don't ride bus routes from one end to the other end. In the case of the Hill circulator route, it's good for Union Station to Eastern Market, or Eastern Market to the Yards, or in the future Southwest to the Yards. (It's so weird that the A40s are the only buses that make local stops down M Street.)

Southwest offers Southeast: Cantina Marina, Arena Stage, a library, and the DMV
Southeast offers Southwest: everything else?

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1300 4TH ST SE 1ST FL   
12/12/18 
null / WAYNE DAUGHERTY 7035247911
E1902414 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1300 4TH ST SE   
12/11/18 
PARCEL O 1-LLC / N/A
B1900015 / CONSTRUCTION
Yards Parcel O1 - Revision to Base Building Permit B1609947 to incorporate minor design changes including converting a residential unit to a fitness center. TPR
1300 4TH ST SE B1   
12/12/18 
null / WAYNE DAUGHERTY 7035247911
E1902413 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1331 4TH ST SE CU   
12/10/18 
FC 1331 LLC / null
P1902045 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1300 4TH ST SE PENTHOUSE   
12/12/18 
null / WAYNE DAUGHERTY 7035247911
E1902412 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1300 4TH ST SE   
12/10/18 
PARCEL O-1 LLC / RICHARD V CAREY 301-424-8899
FB1900032 / SUPPLEMENTAL
(2) NEW INSTALL Gross 1,840,000 BTU / HR Natural Gas HW
1346 4TH ST SE   
12/07/18 
FC 1346 LLC / null
FB1900031 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1000 5TH ST SE   
12/11/18 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / null
E1902394 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
12/11/18 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / BRANDON WILSON; BRANDON M WILSON
B1902777 / CONSTRUCTION
Kitchen Area: -Interior only Frame about 7lf around one column as per 2 / A030 -Add 260 SQF bulkhead as per 1 / A030 None Load bearing wall on first floor and second floor.. M,E,P, will be provided on another permit. IT Lounge -Add 194 SQF bulkhead as per 3 / A030
2 I ST SE   
12/10/18 
MCDONALDS CORPORATION / KIM MITCHELL
B1814290 / CONSTRUCTION
The submitted drawings are a revision to those approved under building permit #B1703907, and include the incorporation of a new corridor connection at the roof level between phase 1 and phase 2 buildings, and corresponding revisions. Revised Mechanical / Plumbing / Electrical drawings are included to reflect the change of Engineers of Record. Interior Design Drawings are also included. Various...
250 M ST SE   
11/28/18 
SQUARE 769 LLC. / CONOR LAW
BCIV1800147 / CONSTRUCTION
New construction of erosion and sediment controls, domestic water service, fire service, sanitary sewer service, storm sewer service, curb & gutter, street trees, misc. landscaping, sidewalk, storm water management.
   
12/05/18 
null
E1902214 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1100 NEW JERSEY AVE SE STE# 420   
11/27/18 
SQUARE 742 LLC / JAMES W LASHER
E1901850 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1100 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
11/20/18 
SQUARE 742 LLC / null
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11/26/18 
SQUARE 742 LLC / null
P1901600 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
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SQUARE 742 LLC / null
M1900652 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
11/29/18 
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12/04/18 
SQUARE 742 LLC / PAUL WHITLEY
AN1900004 / CONSTRUCTION
This project consists on installing (9)proposed antennas , RRU's, and hybrid cables on an existing building, and removing (9) existing antennas, RRU's, TMA's, and hybrid cables.
   
12/05/18 
SQUARE 742 LLC / JOHN M. GIUSEPPE
B1900960 / CONSTRUCTION
renovations to 3rd floor office space SUITE 300 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF AREA AGENCIES ON AGING as shown on the electronically submitted mech., plumb., elect., fire protection, demolition, and architectural dwgs. Interior work only. No change in use. NO structural work involved. 7000 sf. **LEVEL 2 ALTERATION, DEMOLITION
125 O ST SE 2-6FL   
11/28/18 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / ANDREW KLEIN 2408991526
E1901923 / SUPPLEMENTAL
125 O ST SE   
11/27/18 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / MICHAEL P. LYONS
E1901853 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
11/27/18 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / WILLIAM H. JONES
E1901854 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
11/29/18 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / WESLEY R. DAVIS
E1901951 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
11/29/18 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / null
P1901748 / SUPPLEMENTAL
79 POTOMAC AVE SE   
11/27/18 
RIVERFRONT HOLDINGS LLC / null
AH1900270 / CONSTRUCTION
AFTER HOURS 7PM TO 7AM FINAL CONNECTION OF RELOCATED 8” SANITARY LINE
71 POTOMAC AVE SE   
11/26/18 
RIVERFRONT HOLDINGS I LLC / JUSTIN BELLOW
B1804337 / CONSTRUCTION
New 264-Unit 13-Stories Apartment House
   
12/03/18 
RIVERFRONT PROPERTIES LLC / null
P1901813 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
12/13/18 
RIVERFRONT HOLDINGS LL, LLC / PARKER HARRELL
SB1900071 / CONSTRUCTION
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79 POTOMAC AVE SE   
12/13/18 
RIVERFRONT HOLDINGS I LLC / null
E1902479 / SUPPLEMENTAL
227 TINGEY ST SE   
11/30/18 
FOREST CITY WASHINGTON / DFM DEVELOPMENT SERVICES, LLC
AH1900285 / CONSTRUCTION
Yards Parcel L-2. Afterhours permit for the purpose of installing precast concrete façade panels. Work to take place 7PM to 7AM, 12 / 5 / 2018 to 1 / 5 / 2019.
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12/04/18 
FC BOILERMAKER LLC / STEPHEN ADAMS 2403042373
E1902120 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
12/06/18 
FC BOILERMAKER LLC / GARY BRENT; N/A
SG1900027 / CONSTRUCTION
Install 1 illuminated edge-lit wall logo sign, 1 illuminated halo-lit letter sign, 1 double-sided push thru edge-lit blade sign - LULULEMON
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