Rep Moran Wants Wider Streets

Virginia Congressman Jim Moran thinks the DC government should alter more of its policies to serve the interests of his constituents rather than the interests of the people who live here. And he has some specific ideas of how we can help out:

As Virginia works to add hot lanes to I-95 and 395, Virginia Congressman Jim Moran says HOT lanes wont end the rush hour congestion if the District doesn’t do its part.

“Once they get to D.C. it stops, so what D.C. should do is widen 14th Street Bridge, widen 14th Street and get some of the revenue that’s coming from these HOT lanes,” he said. “We’ve suggested it time and time again and they just won’t listen, let alone act on it.”

Maybe DC doesn’t want to widen 14th Street because it’s an urban street with buildings on both sides:

Instead of demolishing the city to make the streets wider, the sensible thing to do would be to have a toll on the bridges from Virginia or a congestion charge for entering the central city. Alternatively or in addition, downtown parking could be taxed more heavily. That would leave a less-congested drive for those who place a high priority on speedy private motor vehicle access to the central business district. And the funds could be used to enhance the metro area’s existing transit options.


And of course this isn’t an idiosyncratic feature of our 14th Street. Severe traffic congestion problems tend to emerge in areas where we’ve already gone and built a lot of stuff. Attempting to ameliorate them by building more lanes would require demolishing the stuff. But the congestion is problematic primarily because access to the stuff is valuable. If you just leveled the whole city, traffic jams would abate (and there’d be plenty of parking!) but there’d be no city left.