Since January, 2003
            
 Sliding from Before to After

Let's talk ovals. Well, one oval in particular, which is the oval that is going to be built on the western side of the new Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge, that big construction project you're seeing immediately downriver of the existing bridge.
As I've been taking pictures of the intersection of South Capitol and Potomac as it is currently configured, I've been having a hard time visualizing how it will change when the bridge and traffic oval are completed, and so even though I'm sure at some point DDOT has created an overlay exactly like this one, I decided to make one myself that's a little larger. (If you want a clean version of the current satellite view to better compare with, here's Google Maps.)
As you can see, the new bridge will not be arriving at the exact southern end of the oval, but instead more on the south-southeast edge. And the South Capitol-Potomac "intersection" does not split the oval in half. The northeastern part of the oval will chop off a bit of the large plaza at the approach to the Nats Park Home Plate Gate, and you can also see why some buildings near the current intersection have been demolished in the past year.
Here are some renderings showing what the view could look like up South Capitol from the oval, and also how the Anacostia Riverwalk will run under the bridge to allow for pedestrian/cyclist movement to and from Southeast and Southwest without having to navigate the oval's traffic crossings.
This oval (and also the one on the bridge's eastern side, which is outside the JDLand Coverage Area) are going to be a big deal when they arrive, and my guess is that there will be considerable squawking from all sides at first. But they are coming--and I'm almost as fascinated with this part of the project as I am with the new bridge itself.
Speaking of which, I went up there and took some pictures today.
If you want to know more, there's my project page, or the voluminous official site, NewFrederickDouglassBridge.com. It's all supposed to be completed by the end of 2021, but We Shall See. (And if you want to know more about the changes that are on the boards for the rest of South Capitol Street north of P, try my South Capitol Street page.)
Comments (10)
   
 
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MMRinDC says: (11/4/19 2:10 PM)
From a driving perspective, the oval looks fine to me. But I am curious about cycling. That looks like a scary bike ride around the top of the oval if I want to stay on Potomac Ave going west (or the opposite, for that matter). You would face the traffic exiting and entering the circle to and from S Cap. My family does ride though that intersection occasionally. With young kids, maybe we'd try to ride through the middle of the oval, but it looks like that would put you on a sidewalk on the South side of the street-- opposite the protected bike lane. Also looks a bit iffy for pedestrians. I can't tell if there would be traffic lights at the crosswalks.


JD says: (11/4/19 2:22 PM)
I think the thing to do, particularly with kids, would be to ride down to the waterfront alongside the bridge and cross that way, and then come back up to Potomac Avenue.


Westnorth says: (11/4/19 8:56 PM)
Yeah, the plan is for the trail to dive under the bridge. I definitely wouldn't want to bike across the oval with kids.


202_cyclist says: (11/5/19 11:11 AM)
It is SWTLQTC territory but there is a heated discussion on the social medias about ANC 6D favoring 26 parking spaces adjacent to Fort McNair instead of safe infrastructure for cyclists. I am really disappointed in ANC 6D for their lack of commitment to making our streets safe for all users, not just accommodating drivers.


JD says: (11/5/19 3:55 PM)
Floor plans and prices for the Kelvin (the east side of Half Street north of N, and the rental part, not the Envy condos): link


JD says: (11/6/19 8:01 AM)
Official word of JBG Smith buying F1rst: link


JD says: (11/6/19 3:02 PM)
Speaking of the South Capitol median, now that it's been removed traffic is going to be shifted for the foreseeable future, presumably to start prep work for the oval.



Sk8carl says: (11/6/19 4:17 PM)
Regarding the P Street cycletrack: P Street SW isn't exactly a major thoroughfare for cars. I don't see why a separate space for cyclists is needed. I've been biking on the street there for years. There are so many other places in DC where a cycle track would be more useful.


walt says: (11/13/19 10:51 AM)
@202cyclist - the ANC6D rep ran his campaign on parking. Want different focus? Maybe consider running yourself?


walt says: (11/13/19 10:53 AM)
@WestNorth

When I bicycle, I don't like to cycle very close to homeless encampments and these underpasses appear to be the future home to encampments. I can't imagine that I would feel safe if that were the case.

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