Near Southeast DC: Past News Items
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12 Blog Posts Since 2003
Southeast Blvd. and Barney Circle Public Meeting Nov. 21
Nov 21, 2013 1:28 AM
DDOT is hosting another public meeting tonight
(Thursday, Nov. 21) on its project to both turn the old sunken portion of the Southeast Freeway into "Southeast Blvd.
" and also to remake Barney Circle.
This meeting will "seek community feedback on updated design concepts" that "illustrate ways to transform the Southeast Freeway between 11th Street SE and Barney Circle into a boulevard that integrates with adjacent neighborhoods and provides new connections to the Anacostia River."
The meeting is from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at Payne Elementary School, 1445 C St., SE.
This is a study that I'm actually pretty interested in, but I missed the previous meeting and ensuing discussions owing to my Annus Horribilis, so I can't give you a whole lot of details on how it has all gone up to now. The project web site
has the basics, including the presentation slides from the first meeting
, and ANC commissioner Kirsten Oldenburg posted 6B's first comments on the concepts back in April
Some of the work on Southeast Blvd. has of course already begun, with tons and tons of dirt already having filled in the former underpass
beneath 11th Street, so that traffic coming from the freeway will be able to exit to a signalized intersection at 11th. But little work has been done east of 11th, which is good since it's this study that is to determine exactly what that work should be.
Also, if you can't get enough of public meetings on transportation issues, you can also mark your calendar for an upcoming DDOT meeting regarding updates to the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative Transportation Master Plan. It's on Dec. 12 from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at the Capitol Skyline Hotel at South Capitol and I streets, SW.
Checking Out the Changes Along on 11th Street
Oct 24, 2013 3:18 PM
I was otherwise occupied on Sept. 7, the day of the big celebration on the now-completed 11th Street Local Bridge
, but I finally wandered down to that neck of the woods a few days ago with my camera to capture the current state of affairs. And one might say that the landscape at 11th and O
has changed a bit thanks to this project:
But there's more than just the newly wide open spaces at 11th and O. The girders for the new flyover that will carry traffic from the Southeast Freeway to the outbound I-695 bridge are all now in place; couple that with the demolition earlier this year of the old outbound flyover, and you have a very different vista at 11th and L
than what's been there up to now:
(The low height of the flyovers above 11th does make that little stretch a bit claustrophobic, though, especially on foot.)
You also now have two-way traffic on 11th between O and M, so that vehicles coming across the local bridge from Anacostia can drive straight north on 11th.
And the dirt-fill-in work for Southeast Blvd.
has progressed enough that the west side of 11th at the freeway no longer feels like an overpass, just the regular road.
Plus there's also work at 8th Street and Virginia Avenue to create a new on-ramp and also fashion the new exit to Southeast Blvd./11th Street.
If you don't feel like clicking on each of these photos, just head to my 11th Street Bridges
and Southeast Blvd.
pages to see them alongside a few other new shots. You may also want to dig into my photo archive to check out the before-and-afters at 11th and the freeway
, 11th and L
, 11th and M
, 11th and N
, and 11th and O
. Though the photos don't quite seem to do the changes justice, especially if you're someone who has walked those blocks of 11th many times over the past few years.
Photos: Tearing Down, Filling In, Building Out, Building Up
May 27, 2013 9:54 PM
The showiest demolition in the neighborhood in years is coming to an end, and while I haven't been able to document it in the obsessive-compulsive way I would have liked, I did manage to make it to 11th Street this weekend to see the gator tail-like final remnants of the old flyover to the outbound 11th Street Bridges
before it completely comes down.
At the same time, I was able to check out the progress on the filling-in of the sunken eastern portion of the Southeast Freeway to build Southeast Blvd
., and dang if they haven't already piled the dirt up so that 11th Street is now level with the "land" just to its west.
Needless to say, I had to create a photo gallery of the remants and the progress
, where you'll also see that work is speeding along on the new flyover to the outbound I-695 bridge.
But I wasn't just interested in the tearing down and filling in, so I continued down to O Street, where not only is the 11th Street Local Bridge inching ever closer to getting all of its lanes and pedestrian path opened, but the new asphalt Anacostia Riverwalk Trail
path to the river has been laid, which also takes you to the spiffy new landing just completed by the riverside. And from that landing you can see the spiffy new overlooks that reach out onto the old bridge piers from the new local bridge. (For the record, I could have easily sidestepped the construction barrels and ventured onto the overlooks, but I am a good little citizen.)
Lots of images of the new trail, the landing, the bridge, and the surroundings are in a second new photo gallery
If these two galleries
aren't enough, you might take some time to browse my before-and-afters all the way down 11th Street, from the freeway
to the river
, as nearly four years of construction have altered the vistas from a maze of flyovers and embankments to, well, a completely different
maze of flyovers and embankments. (But the new flyovers are a little lower on the horizon, at least.)
I also checked out the other projects that are in various stages these days, from Twelve12
to the Lumber Shed
to the leafed-out and fountain-ed Canal Park
to the hole in the ground that will be the Park Chelsea
There's new pictures on each of those pages, but I also couldn't help myself and pulled together a third photo gallery
, with photos from those spots and a few others that were particularly photogenic on a particularly photogenic day. (It even includes my very first visit to the footprint of one of the neighborhood's most central locations. Where might that be?)
[A postscript: I truly think Sunday was the most perfect day for taking pictures in the 10-plus years I've been wandering the neighborhood, with the achingly clear deep blue sky perfectly matched with the late-May sun strength and positions. I ended up walking more than eight miles in three separate treks, and came home with a smidge more than 1,000 photos, about 300 of which are now in my photo archive
Public Meeting Feb. 21 on Southeast Blvd., Barney Circle Planning
Feb 18, 2013 11:26 AM
With the reconstruction of the old Southeast Freeway east of 8th Street into the new Southeast Blvd
., DDOT is running a transportation planning study that is looking how best to integrate this rebuilt stretch of road with the adjacent neighborhoods between 11th Street and Barney Circle. To that end, there is a public meeting about this "opportunity for adaptive reuse"
being held this Thursday, Feb. 21, at 6:30 pm at Payne Elementary School at 1445 C St., SE. Representatives of DDOT and the technical team working on Southeast Blvd. will be there to provide details about the study and future plans for the area, as well as to answer questions.
This would probably be the perfect forum to ask some of the questions that have been posted in the comments here, such as whether the new boulevard will have an intersection with 13th Street, and how the pedestrian/cycling trail planned to be built alongside the boulevard will be handled.
Full Closure of SE Freeway East of 8th Begins Jan. 31; New Southeast Blvd. Page, and 11th Street Bridges Progress Pics
Jan 30, 2013 11:02 PM
As I wrote a few days back
, the portion of the Southeast Freeway between 8th Street SE and Pennsylvania Avenue will be fully closed after the evening rush hour on Thursday, Jan. 31, to both begin work on the new Southeast Blvd.
and to demolish the existing outbound flyover ramp and replace it with a new three-lane one.
One thing I didn't mention in that post is that, with these closures Thursday, both the 8th Street SE on-ramp to the outbound I-695 freeway bridge and the 9th Street ramp toward Pennsylvania Avenue will be closed
As the helpful graphic at right
from DDOT shows, if you're wanting to get on I-695 outbound, you'll need to use the ramp on the southeast corner of 11th and M.
Since this closure now makes the Southeast Blvd. project truly seem underway, I've been spurred into an unexpected burst of action, and have created a Southeast Blvd. project page
, separate from my recently refreshed 11th Street Bridges page
. Right now it's mainly drawings, "before photos," and links to my previous posts
on the project, but I will keep it updated throughout the expected 18-to-20-month span of construction:
I also threw together a new 11th Street Bridges Progress Photo Gallery
with some new shots from this past weekend, when I traipsed around N and O streets and up on the local bridge for the first time in way too long.
And now I think my guilt over some long-neglected photos is assuaged, at least for a little while.
Eastbound SE Freeway to Pennsylvania Ave. Closing Jan. 31
Jan 19, 2013 4:03 PM
The next step in converting the sunken portion of the Southeast Freeway between 8th Street SE and Pennsylvania Avenue to the eventual at-grade "Southeast Boulevard"
is coming, as DDOT has announced
that on Jan. 31, "all eastbound lanes along this stretch will be closed to traffic for approximately 18-20 months while crews fill the roadway to restore it to the local street elevation."
This will be preceded by for a week or so beginning around noontime on Tuesday, Jan. 22, with the route being reduced to only one lane.
Not only are these closures to allow for the filling-in of much of the old roadway
, but also to start construction of bridge piers for "a new bridge over the SE Freeway," which I believe will be the new three-lane flyover ramp from the freeway to the outbound 11th Street Bridge, replacing the current one (seen at top left in the photo).
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