Good afternoon! We start this Hill Buzz off by sharing a few items on the constant scourge known as DOCKLESS VEHICLES– jumping off the road and getting into places they do not belong. What are dockless vehicles, you may ask? It’s a cheeky way of calling vehicles, really. And let’s face it: Cars, trucks, vans and other motorized vehicles crash a lot. And only when you are a pedestrian or a biker do you realize how scary and how present the danger is. Take it away, Councilmember Charles Allen:
Of the many egregious uses of the space by dockless cars, the one that really stings is the delivery truck going the wrong way. How can a large vehicle block the road this way and not even remotely attract the attention of a DPW ticketing employee– or of a citizen who reports it via the 311 app?
To underscore the need to tackle this very large (pun intended) problem, we turn to Greater Greater Washington. Libby Solomon does a round-up of the many places where cars have jumped the curb and landed in spaces where people walk, bike, play and sleep. It’s a long list and we’re not halfway into May yet.
The last item in the GGW list is a car that jumped the curb at 17th and Massachusetts SE. Now, DDOT has claimed that 17th Street east has been studied on multiple occasions and does not need additional traffic lights or stops. There are radar speed signs at several places along the road where there are no stop signs, such as at A Street NE and C Street SE, and there is a lot of bright paint. But cars still speed, regardless of what the sign says. They develop a lot of speed in a city block or two, especially when the road is straight and wide, as is the case with C Street NE, especially between 14th and 20th Streets NE.
Paint cannot stop cars. Radar signs cannot stop cars. Flexposts (as evidenced by the photo in Councilmember Allen’s tweet) cannot stop cars. We know that better street design that takes pedestrians and cyclists into account helps, but it seems that the District Department of Transportation is only moved to act when there is a fatality at an intersection, and that is a terrible way to operate.
On Saturday afternoon, 29-year old Keith Frye was stabbed to death in the 400 block of 8th Street SE, near Eastern Market Metro park. (Washington Post.) The stunning daytime murder came as a shock to neighbors and businesses along the strip, but no one is more devastated than his family. We send our deepest condolences to the Frye family. If you have any tips for police, call (202) 727-9099 or text 50411. NBC-4
In restaurant news, Little Pearl will be closing because of the cicadas. That’s it. That’s the story. (They will probably also be doing updates, but you can’t serve Michelin-starred exoskeleton– though I’d like to see them try.) Washingtonian
Art & Soul, inside YOTEL, at 415 New Jersey Avenue NW, has reopened with a new menu and a new chef, Danny Chavez, at the helm. The restaurant will be an homage to the diversity of American cuisine and will put its stamp on dishes from the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
In vaccine news, the FDA has approved emergency vaccines for 12 to 15 year olds (NBC News). The Children’s pre-registration portal is currently full, but you can check updates by visiting the District’s vaccination website.
In snack news, if you want to support the Amidon-Bowen PTA, click here and get yourself some popcorn. You’ll be glad you did.