Mapped: How the D.C. region gets to work

Cars drive along a moderately-congested Greenbelt Road, a six-lane suburban throughway overlooking a green horizon.

Michael Theis/Route 1 Reporter

Cars drive along Greenbelt Road near Beltway Plaza.

Despite having one of the more comprehensive mass transit systems in the entire country, the Washington, D.C. metro area is still a car-centric region for commuters. But a regional overview of commuting habits conceals a surprisingly diverse set of commuting modes at the neighborhood level. To this point, it has...
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2 thoughts on “Mapped: How the D.C. region gets to work

  1. Great maps! As an out-of-shape person, I wonder how important topography is for the biking stuff. From the darkest areas, you only have to go uphill to get home, which is the better direction to sweat in terms of professionalism.

    • I would hypothesize that topography and infrastructure are two of the biggest factors in ones decisions to adopt cycling as a utilitarian mode of transport. Focusing on our area: it’s pretty easy to bike up and down the Anacostia’s northeast and northwest branches because it’s a string of towns connected by mode-segregated trails, and it all gently slopes toward D.C. But if you go much past Kenilworth Avenue, then the stream systems begin to drain west toward the Patuxent, making it harder for a D.C.-oriented commute. That’s compounded by a general lack of cycling infrastructure in Prince George’s County areas south and east of the Anacostia Tributary Trails system. Have you ever seen Strava’s global cycling heat map? There’s void of cycling activity in Prince George’s central inner-Beltway communities. :

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