I like that they are going to be red.

Flickr: Streets of Washington

A Circulator bus near NPR headquarters.

Now reading about the future of D.C. transit, via “The Case for Streetcars“:

Almost 50 years ago, streetcars in Washington, D.C. stopped running and most of their tracks were removed. Now they’re back and ready for a revival, with parts of the first two lines slated to open next spring. In this post, we talk to Dan Tangherlini, the former DDOT director under Mayor Anthony Williams, who committed to building one of the first two lines, about why streetcars matter for the nation’s capital.


The streetcars were conceived in 1997, when Mayor Marion Barry’s Department of Public Works published “A Transportation Vision, Strategy, and Action Plan for the Nation’s Capital.” The plan called for circulator buses and streetcars to connect existing Metrobus and Metrorail lines and activity centers close to the city’s core. Planners think these additional connections are important since current rail lines connect neighborhoods to the city center but not necessarily to each other; this sometimes makes travel between neighborhoods and activity centers on different transit lines difficult, despite the 106 miles of Metrorail track and 319 Metrobus routes that exist today. Plus, as one presentation of the city’s transportation department puts it, overcrowding on Metrorail will be “unmanageable by 2013” and several Metrobus lines are already over capacity.

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Speak Up About the Circulator!


The Circulator!

The Circulator buses are popular because they are pretty (to me), clean, cheap and generally easy to use. I just took this survey to help improve their service– and tell them how much I like it. If you’d like to tell them what you think, go here and let them know. Questions include:

- What should change about the Circulator over the next 5-10 years?

- What should stay the same?

One of my favorite things about D.C. is how it’s possible to function here without a car. When I lived in Georgetown, the Circulator was my conveyance of choice for getting to work– or a metro station. It’s nice to be asked for input regarding a service I enjoy and appreciate.

Circulator’s New Route? East of the Anacostia River.

It’s happening, next year:

DDOT is currently conducting a comprehensive study to guide the expansion of the Circulator system over the next five to ten years. That includes an ongoing collaboration with neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River to determine the best route for a new line in this location. This planning effort will be completed this fall.

DDOT anticipates the route with service east of the Anacostia River to garner much demand and has already directed First Transit, which operates the DC Circulator, to purchase buses for the new line in preparation for starting service next year.