The Office of Planning is leading a multi-year public effort to review and revise the District's zoning regulations. This site contains information on the process and multiple ways for you to get involved. Use this site to sign up for working groups, read draft recommendations, and offer your comments on any phase of the project. Please give us your thoughts and check back often for updates.
The Office of Zoning (OZ) is an independent District of Columbia agency which was created in 1990 by an Act of the City Council. Effective in 1991, OZ provides professional, technical, and administrative assistance to the Zoning Commission (ZC) and the Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA). The agency receives and processes all zoning related applications, which may be for a zoning change handled by the ZC, or to seek relief from a zoning regulation provision handled by the BZA. OZ schedules ZC and BZA public meetings and hearings and provides follow-up information on their actions and decisions; coordinates the zoning process with the Office of Planning and other District and Federal agencies; maintains, updates and publishes the District’s Zoning Regulations (through the District’s Office of Documents) and the Zoning Map; prepares records of appealed ZC and BZA cases for the courts; and handles all administrative matters associated with the daily functioning of the office. OZ consults with the Office of Corporation Counsel regarding legal issues and monitors the District’s legislative process to keep the ZC and the BZA apprised of matters affecting zoning. OZ also provides public information about the zoning process, the Zoning Regulations, the zoning of specific properties, and the status of cases pending before the ZC and the BZA. OZ, the ZC, and the BZA receive legal advice from the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) to ensure the legal sufficiency of their actions and decisions.
Drivers Feeling Shunned by D.C.
City Less Welcoming to Suburban Cars
By Eric M. Weiss
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, July 6, 2008; Page A01
The District is escalating what some suburban commuters are calling its war against workers who drive into the city.
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The city has changed parts of Constitution Avenue NE from a reversible commuter artery back to a quiet side street and is considering removing the reversible lane on 16th Street NW, a key commuting route from Montgomery County.
Mayor Adrian M. Fenty's administration also is studying closing the section of the Interstate 395 tunnel that connects with New York Avenue NW, expanding the use of speed cameras and increasing parking fees and enforcement. Fees for encroaching on a crosswalk would increase from $50 to $500 under a pedestrian safety proposal.
The District is moving toward becoming "the most anti-car city in the country," said John Townsend, a spokesman for AAA Mid-Atlantic. "They see commuters as the enemy."
City officials say that the moves are part of a policy of putting the needs of its residents and businesses before those of suburban commuters and that they are trying to create a walkable, bikeable, transit-oriented metropolis.
Like New York, London, Stockholm and Portland, Ore., District officials said, the city is reclaiming its streets for the people who live there. With billions of dollars invested in the Metro system, there are plenty of ways for commuters to get into the city without bringing exhaust-spewing vehicles with them, officials said.
May 29, 2008
FMCSA Administrator Hill Reports on Curbside Bus Carriers
Many of you likely spent at least part of the holiday weekend traveling – whether driving to the beach or perhaps flying somewhere to visit friends and family. Last week, I traveled from Washington, D.C. to New York City for a conference and decided to personally experience a relative newcomer to the transportation industry: “curbside” bus carriers.
Curbside buses transport passengers from predetermined locations after the rider purchases a ticket from a website, a local vendor or the driver. They post their schedules on-line, generally operate without ticket offices and make their stops street side instead of bus terminals. Besides those distinctions, curbside buses are held to the same federal safety requirements as the rest of the industry.
As I learned when purchasing my tickets, low costs are the big draw. Curbside carriers typically offer incentives to buy tickets early. For example, some curbside bus companies offer seats for $1 to the first purchasers. From there, the price increases as fewer seats become available. Buying a seat at the last minute, however, will still only cost about $35 for a one-way trip to NYC. In fact, I paid more for a taxi to take me 33 blocks in Manhattan than I did for the cost of the five-hour trip from Washington.
I tried two different companies – one for the ride up to New York and another for the return trip to Washington. Both were comfortable and affordable. Most importantly, however, they both operated in a safe manner, were familiar with our safety regime and both drivers appeared quite capable. And, for those of you who are wondering, I did not reveal my identity during either trip.
As the administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) – the federal agency that regulates the safety of interstate trucks and buses – I’ve always maintained that interstate passenger carriers have long been and continue to be among the safest mode of transportation in the United States, something that was demonstrated to me yet again last week. Our agency is committed to rigorous oversight of the bus industry.
DDOT is planning to force all low-cost bus carriers, like Bolt Bus, DC2NY, and the Chinatown buses to stop loading in Chinatown and at various other spots around the city (a few pick up in Dupont Circle), reports the Examiner (via DCist). Instead, all buses will have to load and unload at a special zone at 10th and D Southwest, right by the L'Enfant Metro.
This seems like a terrible idea. It sounds like it came from the LOS-watchers within DDOT: "Hmm, these buses are causing a lot of pedestrian congestion and taking up some room on our streets which should be used to move commuters in and out of the city as fast as possible. OK, let's put the buses in an empty part of the city, but one that's near Metro."
Intercity trains are much more energy-efficient than buses, but one advantage of buses is their flexibility. It's good that buses can choose to pick up in areas where there are many customers. Also, the service brings more pedestrian activity to those neighborhoods. At L'Enfant, there's nothing, and people will all just hop on the Metro.
If traffic is a problem, take away some curb parking or a traffic lane. Each of those buses carries as many people as a few blocks full of single passenger vehicles. There are some underutilized streets - how about a loading zone on the very wide F Street by Gallery Place?
Our street network is for the use of all, including buses. Buses aren't something we should move out of the way to speed transportation: they are the transportation. Let's move cars out of the way to make room for the buses.
Bus Rules: Let's Call a Time OutThe number of cheap buses from DC to New York (like the Chinatown buses, DC2NY, Bolt Bus, Megabus, and others) has exploded recently. That's great for riders who want to get to New York cheaply, and to bring New Yorkers here to see what a great city we have (and spend money here).
It also causes noise in some neighborhoods. That's a problem, and one we should deal with. But after years and years of these buses operating, the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) has suddenly imposed "emergency" rules to banish all of these buses to the barren sidewalks of L'Enfant Plaza.
With only one month's notice, suddenly all of the bus companies will have to apply for permits, and can't pick up in more convenient areas. Some will go out of business. Visitors to our city will only see bland, depressing L'Enfant Plaza instead of vibrant, exciting Chinatown, Metro Center, Farragut Square, or Dupont Circle. There won't be anything to eat while waiting for a bus. People will feel less safe. Our businesses will lose revenue. And while private cars can still park for free or almost free on most blocks, we're hurting an environmentally friendly mode of transportation.
What's the rush? Can't we take a moment for a public discussion of better alternatives? What about auctioning off a few loading areas around the city? Or creating a bus zone in the huge parking lot that used to be the old convention center, or on one of the wide but mostly empty streets around Gallery Place or Judiciary Square?
Let's find a solution that keeps lively competition among our intercity buses while also fixing the problems. The buses have been operating for years. Let's take a time out on these rules until we can all work out a better solution.
DDOT is accepting comments for a few more days. Please send them a letter below asking them to call a time out on the new bus rules. Feel free to also weigh in with your opinion on what should be done.
Make Your Voice Heard
Issue in Spotlight: Intercity Bus Loading & Unloading in Public Space In response to various complaints with regard to intercity buses using public space for loading and unloading passengers, DDOT has instituted new regulations* that will now require intercity bus operators to obtain a permit as well as use newly identified, designated area(s) for pickups and drop offs. Existing intercity bus service operators, who utilize public space for loading and unloading passengers, should submit their application* for permits by July 3rd. Limited space is available. Applications filed by July 3rd will be processed together. Any of these applications that include requests for use of the space at the same time will be resolved by the District Department of Transportation. All applications received after July 3rd will be given space as available on a first come first served basis. Applications must be submitted in person at 941 North Capitol Street, NE, Suite 2300 along with a check made out to the DC Treasurer for the $100 application fee. The hours for submission are from 8:30 am and 4:15 pm, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday. The new regulations are part of a one-year pilot program to provide safer pedestrian environments in public space for visitors and residents.
Issue in Spotlight: Intercity Bus Loading & Unloading in Public Space
In response to various complaints with regard to intercity buses using public space for loading and unloading passengers, DDOT has instituted new regulations* that will now require intercity bus operators to obtain a permit as well as use newly identified, designated area(s) for pickups and drop offs. Existing intercity bus service operators, who utilize public space for loading and unloading passengers, should submit their application* for permits by July 3rd.
Limited space is available. Applications filed by July 3rd will be processed together. Any of these applications that include requests for use of the space at the same time will be resolved by the District Department of Transportation. All applications received after July 3rd will be given space as available on a first come first served basis.
Applications must be submitted in person at 941 North Capitol Street, NE, Suite 2300 along with a check made out to the DC Treasurer for the $100 application fee. The hours for submission are from 8:30 am and 4:15 pm, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday. The new regulations are part of a one-year pilot program to provide safer pedestrian environments in public space for visitors and residents.
Low-cost, regional bus companies forced to load in designated zone
Responding to the exploding popularity of inexpensive bus rides between Washington, New York and other destinations, the District plans to funnel all buses that load and unload passengers on city streets into a single “intercity bus zone” in Southwest. The myriad bus services, a staple of the downtown for years, will face fines up to $1,500 for loading
outside of that zone, which can accommodate only two buses at a time.
The D.C. Department of Transportation claims that the various Chinatown buses, DC2NY and BoltBus, among others, are congesting streets, disrupting transit and causing a safety hazard for pedestrians. With fares as low as $15 each way and modern amenities such as wireless Internet, the buses have proliferated as gas prices have skyrocketed.
“In some instances, this activity poses safety concerns to the general public and to the bus customers themselves,” Karyn LeBlanc, DDOT spokeswoman, said in an e-mail.
Under a soon-to-debut one-year pilot program, intercity buses will be routed to a curb lane on northbound 10th Street Southwest, just south of D Street beneath the L’Enfant Promenade. The regulations require that all buses obtain a DDOT permit to load there — the application for which must include a proposed schedule, plan for queuing passengers and a $100 fee.
This site tells the story of the Washington Metro, a 103-mile rapid transit system serving Washington, D.C., and the surrounding areas of Maryland and Virginia. Planning for Metro began in the 1950s, construction began in 1969, and the first segment opened for operation in 1976. Metro is one of the largest public-works projects ever built, and it is the second-busiest rail transit system in the United States.
Metro is the creation of thousands of planners, engineers, architects, and builders, and hundreds of thousands of neighbors and riders. Whatever your role, we hope you will share your own experiences as part of the ECHO Science and Technology Memory Bank.
This site was researched and written by Zachary M. Schrag, author of The Great Society Subway: A History of the Washington Metro (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006).
Welcome to MVP Bus Line
Express Bus Service*
$20 Oneway/$35 Roundtrip
New Baltimore Address:
1910 N Charles Street, Baltimore, MD, 21218
Starting 04/15/2008, we will run Summer schedule. Please click here=> to find out more.
Holiday Schedules(2/18/2008) Click here
New York(Mid Town,Penn Station) ==> Washington DC/Baltimore
Washington DC/Baltimore ==> New York(Mid Town,Penn Station)
*Note:We do not stop in New York Chinatown
*NYC<=>DC takes about 4.5 hours subject to traffic
*NYC<=>Baltimore takes about 3 hours subject to traffic
Featuring:· Guaranteed Seat for online reservation*
· Brand new comfortable air-conditioned buses
· Lavatory equipped
· Newly released movies shown on most trips
· Convenient pick-up & drop-off locations in both cities
· Express bus service
Welcome to Washington Deluxe Bus Commuter
Washington Deluxe is ready to provide you and your group with the finest, safest and
most reliable bus service in Washington and NY. With more than 24 years of experience, our staff is friendly, professional and ready to work one on one with you and your group.
Why Choose Washington Deluxe Bus Commuter
Washington Deluxe knows you have a choice when it comes to selecting a transportation service provider for in Washington and NY. Our dedication to customer satisfaction and safety is what sets our company apart. With experience comes a greater ability to provide our clients with the flawless service they have come to rely on Washington Deluxe for their travel needs
Best Buses. Best Rates.
Offering an award winning combination of commuter buses at rates that can fit most budgets is how Washington Deluxe has become one of the most recognized names in the bus business in Washington and NY. Call us today
We take Extra Effort to Provide you a Comfortable and Pleasent Experience, when you Travel with us
Saturday Service Provided By*
Boltbus starts D.C. to New York City service
Washington Business Journal - by Erin Killian Staff Reporter
A new bus service is launching between D.C. and New York City.
Secaucus, N.J.-based Boltbus, a division of Greyhound Lines Inc., said tickets went on sale Monday for the service that will start March 27.
Boltbus will run between Metro Center at 11th and G streets NW and two stops in New York City -- near Penn Station at 33rd Street and 7th Avenue and in south Manhattan at 6th Avenue and Canal Street.
Boltbus will compete with the Washington Deluxe, Apex Bus, Vamoose Express and DC2NY, a service that started in July 2007 between Dupont Circle and Penn Station in New York with a stop at the McPherson Square Metro station.
DC2NY launched in July and marketed the service by offering free water and high-speed wireless Internet service onboard.
Boltbus is not only also offering wireless, but it is also using a first-come first-serve incentive to sign up riders.
The company said one-way tickets start at $1 plus a 50 cent booking fee and become more expensive as the bus gets full. Also, Boltbus is offering a free one-way ticket for every eight round trips purchased.
Tickets for each bus company vary, but are typically between $30 and $40 round trip, which is significantly cheaper than Amtrak's cost of about $140 and up for a round-trip ticket.
The buses tend to attract travelers and students who are looking for an affordable way to get between the cities.
Boltbus said it will offer eight trips daily, starting at 7:30 a.m. from D.C. to New York.
Dublin Core communities will work together in the following ways:
* develop a formal RDA Element vocabulary (probably following the DC Abstract Model)
* develop an application profile of RDA for Dublin Core using FRBR and FRAD
* use RDF and SKOS to disclose RDA vocabularies
Non-Carpool Drivers Could Pay Up to $1.60 a Mile on I-95/395
By Eric M. Weiss
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, March 3, 2007; Page A01
Drivers in express toll lanes planned for Interstates 95 and 395 would pay as much as a dollar a mile in some spots along the 36-mile route during peak times, the highest rate for a commute in the country, officials from the companies building the new-style highway said as they filed a detailed proposal yesterday.
But regional transportation planners estimate that the cost for a rush-hour ride on the optional lanes probably will be far steeper: as much as $1.60 a mile in crowded segments. They estimate that a 21-mile, rush-hour trip from the Pentagon to Prince William Parkway would cost as much as $22.28. A round-trip during peak hours could cost $41.46.
The story he tells is relevant to all metropolitan areas struggling with multiple jurisdictions, federal constraints, and a shrinking economy.
There were a number of alternatives to a rail system in the 1950s, when Metro was first proposed. Ideas ranged from imposing strict land-use and fuel-consumption controls, to tolerating or encouraging decentralization, to building many more freeways, or (D.C.'s choice) building both freeways and rail. A brief comparison to Atlanta, which at first chose something more like the third option, suggests that Washington is not worse off.
To be sure, Metro does not guarantee transit-oriented development. This is the main message of Schrag's key eighth chapter, "The District." Suburban Arlington and Montgomery County managed to encourage transit-oriented development near Metro stations; Fairfax County did not. TOD, he concludes, "is a human cultivar, demanding care, foresight, and political will."
Even a transit line needs planning help to make a livable city.