The downpour that turned the east Cleveland Park Metro entrance into a waterfall in summer 2016 focused a lot of attention on the area’s longstanding stormwater runoff problem. One result is a new DDOT plan that proposes to improve drainage and the streetscape at the same time.
The plan, DDOT says, aims to “elevate” the pedestrian experience, define flexible use of public space, and create spaces that draw people to Cleveland Park. It was unveiled at a community meeting on January 23rd. Take a look here and see what you think.
Using feedback from the Cleveland Park community, DDOT’s proposal includes raising the service lane between Ordway and Macomb Street and turning it into a shared space for pedestrians and motorists in search of parking.
Another big change, at Quebec and Porter Streets, would eliminate the slip lanes that merge onto Porter and Connecticut and turn all that impervious asphalt into a pedestrian plaza with rain gardens.
Across the street, the wider sidewalks at the Uptown Theater, the fire station and Walgreens would get larger tree boxes, seating and permeable paving.
Susie Taylor, the co-chair of the Cleveland Park Citizens Association’s Streetscape Committee, said the community response, particularly to the changes in the service lane, were mostly positive.
“There are a few people that are terribly concerned that DDOT can’t fix the all of the drainage issues within the scope of this project,” Taylor told the Connection, “but… water run-off problems are city-wide. They are not confined to Cleveland Park.”
And the good news, Taylor said, “is that the work anticipated for the [Cleveland Park] Streetscape and Drainage Project will not need to be affected by a future, larger drainage project. DDOT plans to begin work in January 2019.”