Since January, 2003
            
 (a random before-and-after moment)
May 27, 2006
June 16, 2018
4th at L, Looking Southwest (see more)

The process to build a new Douglass Bridge hasn't exactly been moving at lightning speed, but nevertheless an important milestone has been reached: on August 14 it was announced that "the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) approved the Supplemental Final Environmental Impact Statement (SFEIS) and issued a Record of Decision (ROD) for the South Capitol Street Corridor Project—both indicating federal approval of the project."
And with $587 million in DC's budget already earmarked for the project, DDOT can move forward with the next big step: choosing the design-build team, presumably from among the "final four" bidders identified back in February 2014, a process that is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016.
The current Douglass Bridge is now 66 years old, and has been classified as "functionally obsolete." DDOT says that if it is not replaced "within the next five years, the bridge would require an estimated $110 million in major rehabilitation work and would need to be closed for more than a year."
(And, maybe I'm just getting older and turning into even more of a fraidy cat, but holy moly is the traffic making the current bridge vibrate like crazy when you walk the pedestrian path. I just don't remember it moving that much even six months ago. Which perhaps might explain this bit of crumbling I saw on Saturday.)
This is now at least my 120th post on the bridge and the plans to replace it, so I'll go with a very quick summary (this post from last December is a good catch-up option). As you can see in the pilfered-from-DDOT graphic above, the new bridge will run immediately parallel and downriver of the existing bridge, with two new large traffic ovals on its approaches. There will also be a much-needed reconstruction of the I-295/Suitland Parkway interchange.
The bridge will have three travel lanes in each direction, along with 18-feet-wide pedestrian/bike paths on both the up-river and down-river edges of the bridge, which will be configured as one 8-foot-wide lane for pedestrians and a 10-foot-wide bidirectional bike path.
The eventual second phase of this overall "South Capitol Street Corridor Project" will be streetscape improvements to the north end of the street, similar to the spiffening that the blocks from N to Potomac received back in 2007 that give the street more of an "urban boulevard" feel. This will include a full redesign of the M Street intersection and a reconfiguration of South Capitol's interchange with I-395.
The full Request for Proposals is expected to be released in the spring of 2016.
While waiting for the new bridge to arrive, I may have to put out calls for volunteers willing to let me tether myself to them when I need to take pictures from the existing bridge, because otherwise the authorities will probably have to respond to calls of an old lady frozen in place on the pedestrian path, holding a camera but too terrified to move.
Comments (8)
   
 
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Jaybird says: (8/31/15 4:02 PM)
The 200th anniversary of the birthday of the "Lion of Anacostia" is 2018. That would be great to open it then.


apage says: (9/1/15 3:04 AM)
Progress!

I second Jaybird's sentiments above.

As someone who has biked over this bridge a number of times, I definitely welcome a more stable replacement and a wider path.


Maelstrom says: (9/1/15 6:58 AM)
Hey! Not sure if I missed the post when it was recognized (don't live in D.C. anymore and don't check in here too often), but it looks like there's new satellite imagery on google for the near southeast. Dated April 2015 from what I see on Google Earth


JD says: (9/1/15 9:35 AM)
Dang it! I was on my way to Google Maps over the weekend to check that, and got sidetracked, and never went back. Thanks for the heads up.


JES says: (9/1/15 11:20 AM)
I dunno how long it takes to build a bridge, but I'm assuming it won't be done in time for the ASG, correct?


JD says: (9/1/15 11:22 AM)
My assumption is that construction won't start until 2017, and probably take about three years (including the new circles, etc.).

The question will be whether they will hold *off* on building the circle at South Capitol & Potomac until after the ASG, to not screw up the pretty camera angles of that approach to the Home Plate Gate.


JES says: (9/1/15 12:04 PM)
Maybe they could prioritize the circles and try to have them done(ish) before? I can't imagine that part takes nearly as long as the bridge part. But, as said before, I know nothing about these kinds of things.


JD says: (9/1/15 12:07 PM)
I will be interested to see how they stage the circles--especially since the western one at Potomac Avenue needs the approach to the existing bridge demolished before it can be completed. There may be a period of time where the new bridge has a straight approach to it, or a half-circle, while they then get the rest of it completed.

I laugh every time I think about this bridge finally moving forward--when I first started down this path, the notion of a new bridge was in the offing, but "not starting before 2011." Which was eight years from when I was reading it.

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Recent Issued Building Permits Archive  
926 4TH ST SE   
01/16/19 
null / NA NA NA
EHOP19950290 / HOME OCCUPATION
1331 4TH ST SE CU   
01/22/19 
FC 1331 LLC / null
P1903139 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1346 4TH ST SE   
01/11/19 
ALAN OWINGS / SEV HENRY
AH1900404 / CONSTRUCTION
After Hours Work on Saturday (1 / 12 / 2019) and Sunday (1 / 13 / 2019) for the Following Operations Saturday, 1 / 12 / 2019 ---Interior Operations after 7PM Sunday, 1 / 13 / 2019 ---Interior Operations: 7AM-7PM ---Exterior Operations: 7AM-7PM ---Sitework Operations: 7AM-7PM
900 5TH ST SE   
01/02/19 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA HOUSING AUTHORITY / MATT HUPPMAN
D1900229 / CONSTRUCTION
the Berg Corporation has a project located at 900 5th Street SE that has suffered a major fire and is considered an emergency job. Twenty percent of original structure was immediately demolished following the fire for safety reasons. The Berg Corporation is now pursuing a demolition permit to remove the balance of the stick built portion of the structure. The following improvements are to ...
1000 5TH ST SE 1ST FL   
01/09/19 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / WALTER T JONES
E1903161 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1000 5TH ST SE   
12/27/18 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / TANYA HILL
B1902924 / CONSTRUCTION
DGS RENOVATION OF EXISTING WARMING KITCHEN AND FITNESS ROOM OF APPROXIMATELY 900 SF TO BECOME RESIDENTIAL GRADE DEMONSTRATION KITCHEN. RENOVATION OF EXISTING APPROXIMATELY 300 SF OPEN LOUNGE AND SOME DEMOLITION OF INTERIOR PARTITIONS, NEW FINISHES AND MEP. This permit dose not include the Child devolepment center, There work in this area.
   
01/02/19 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / null
P1902543 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
01/11/19 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / KASMIN HOLT
AH1900407 / CONSTRUCTION
Work under permit E1903161 on starting at 7pm - 7am.
1005 5TH ST SE   
01/04/19 
ALEXANDRA H HARRIS / HOLLIE MASON
F1800763 / CONSTRUCTION
Requesting permit to add an ornamental black iron fence with gate, not to exceed three feet, enclosing / surrounding front yard area. Installation of the fence may require concrete footings. The fence will be the same as others in the neighborhood and one of the approved transparent designs approved by the HOA; "hairpin" front section and "picket" return sections with ball finials on posts. Sol...
328 I ST SE   
01/11/19 
BRIAN HUSEMAN / MELVIN CRENSHAW
B1904212 / CONSTRUCTION
Remove and replace kitchen on 2nd floor and update electrical. Remove and replace bathroom on 3rd floor and update electrical. Total SQFT 248
401 L ST SE   
01/15/19 
MICHAEL R BRICKMAN / SHELBY FIGAROORE
P1902908 / SUPPLEMENTAL
250 M ST SE   
01/07/19 
SQUARE 769 LLC / BRIAN STROTT
SH1900002 / CONSTRUCTION
Support of excavation system for a nine story 188,000 GSF office building with three levels below grade located at 250 M St. SE.
   
01/08/19 
SQUARE 769 LLC / ROBERT HART
AH1900389 / CONSTRUCTION
After hours work permit for installation of DDOT approved TCP jersey barriers.
1200 NEW JERSEY AVE SE 20590   
01/03/19 
JBG/FEDERAL CENTER LLC / SAM HOLLEN
B1900891 / CONSTRUCTION
INTERIOR RENOVATION TO 7TH FLOOR OFFICE SPACE. PARTITIONS, FURNITURE, MEP, LIFE SAFETY AND NEW STRUCTURAL HANGING PARTITION. 7581 SQUARE FEET. US DOT **LEVEL 2 ALTERATION
71 POTOMAC AVE SE   
01/08/19 
RIVERFRONT HOLDINGS II, LLC / MITCH A. PERMUY
E1902865 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
01/10/19 
FORIDA ROCK PROPERTIES INC / DANIEL M. NARH
P1902751 / SUPPLEMENTAL
AH = After Hours; B = Alteration & Repair; D = Demolition; E = Electrical; FB = Boiler; M = Mechanical; P = Plumbing and Gas; PC = Post Card; R = Raze; SG = Sign; TL = Tenant Layout; TN = Tent; RW = Retaining Wall;

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