Dupont Lobbies for Circulator

March 26, 2014

Dupont Circle and Shaw are candidates for new Circulator Bus routes from Southwest. But Dupont Circle is mounting a more vigorous lobbying campaign.

At its regular monthly meeting March 12, Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2B/Dupont Circle passed a resolution calling for the creation of two new Circulator bus routes. One route would run from Southwest to Dupont Circle. Another would run from the Lincoln Memorial on the Mall to U Street, home of Ben’s Chili Bowl — spawning the nicknames “Abe to Ben’s” and “A to B” for the proposed routes.

Perhaps more importantly, Commissioners from ANC2B and ANC 2A/Foggy Bottom have been actively lobbying for the Dupont Circle routes. The Commissioners have been advocating for the Abe to Ben’s route on the blog Greater Greater Washington. These same Commissioners — Mike Silverstein (2B district 06) and Patrick Kennedy (2A Chair, district 01) — also testified at a DC Circulator public meeting held by the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) February 25 at Eastern Market.

There is no comparable campaign from the Shaw neighborhood. Both candidates in the April 1 Democratic primary for City Councilmember from Ward Six have promised to advocate for a Southwest-Shaw line if elected — see SALM blog post of March 13. But the general election is not until November, and the winners will not be seated until January 2015. By that time, decisions may have already been made.

The effect of the Dupont effort can be seen in the report of the February 25 meeting. At the meeting, participants were asked to post stickers on a map to show where they would like to see Circulator go. The results were then weighted and tabulated. Interest in the Dupont Circle alternatives scored twice as high as the proposed route from Southwest to the Convention Center in Shaw. The comments section of the report also shows much greater interest in another Dupont Circulator route.

As published by SALM – 3-25-14

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