Parents at a heavily-Hispanic elementary school in Mount Rainier are angry after a permission slip for a fourth-grade field trip to the White House required students to provide proof of citizenship if they wanted to attend.
You can now bike from downtown Washington, D.C., to Beltsville, Maryland, almost entirely on paved trails, courtesy of an effectively-complete, not officially-opened, extension of the Little Paint Branch Trail along Cherry Hill Road.
On the narrow question of does this project achieve it’s stated goals — shortening highway commute times — Maryland may have a success. But on the greater question of proactive, responsible planning according to objective public policy, this plan is highly suspect.
Prince George’s County officials had harsh words for Maryland transportation officials pushing plans to add new lanes to the Beltway. Members of the Prince George’s County Council were briefed on the proposal, dubbed the I-495-I-270 Managed Lanes Study, at a March 25 meeting. The proposal calls for the addition of variable-rate toll lanes to the Maryland portion of the Capital Beltway. During discussion of the proposal – heavily backed by Gov. Larry Hogan’s administration – District Three County Councilor Danielle Glaros said the project lacked broad buy-in from local communities. She contrasted the toll lane proposal with the efforts to build the Purple Line, a transportation infrastructure project more enthusiastically endorsed by the communities and local governments through which it wends.
Last week, we explored how massive engineering projects and car-centric post-war suburbanization transformed the Route 1 corridor over the past 70 years. Now, we’re going to focus on a more-recent phenomenon which has also fundamentally altered the built environment of the Route 1 corridor: urbanism. For decades between the end of World War II and the new millennium, the Route 1 corridor was shaped by the road, the car and by single-use zoning. You had your office parks, your shopping centers and your residential areas, and never the treble shall meet. But something has changed.
Editor’s note: Please see correction notice at bottom of article. Developers want the Prince George’s County Planning Board to tap the brakes on a proposed overhaul of the county’s procedures for reviewing new development plans.
The most prominent changes include the establishment of a formal pre-application conference with county planning staff and new deadlines that prevent developers from making last-second changes to their plans.
The formalized pre-application conference is designed to create an opportunity for planning staff to learn more about developers’ plans, in turn giving planning staff an opportunity to inform the developers of what types of reports and documentation will be necessary to move ahead with an application. Initially, it will be optional. But that could change if Prince George’s County Council overhauls the zoning map to reflect a new zoning code passed by the previous Council in 2018. The new zoning code requires a pre-application meeting between developers and planning staff.
Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks’ political committee is responsible for a phone poll asking detailed questions about local policy issues, including legalizing recreational marijuana and the relocation of the Washington Redskins. Route 1 Reporter first learned of the poll in late January. In addition to policy-oriented questions, it also asked several questions designed to assess the respondents’ feelings about Alsobrooks herself. Multiple phone calls, emails, text messages and other attempts by Route 1 Reporter to contact Alsobrooks’ office for comment on the poll were met with silence. But Alsobrooks could not stay silent on the matter on the Kojo Nnamdi Show’s Local Politics Hour on WAMU this past Friday, Feb.
Richard Lee, a 37-year old District Heights resident, is the latest person to be killed by a motorist in Prince George’s County. He is the 145th pedestrian to be killed by motorists in Prince George’s County since 2010.
The poll focused particularly on recently-sworn in County Executive Angela Alsobrooks, asking respondents to rate their perceptions of Alsobrooks across a series of questions. So, did Alsobrooks’ office commission the poll? Good question.