What’s the story with Sherman Ave?

“Dear PoPville,

Why does it seem like the metro to Tysons will be completed before Sherman Avenue will be done? What’s taking so long?”

Construction was slated for completion around Oct. 2012. Looks like it’ll be closer to Nov. or Dec. but if the upper section looks as good as the lower section I think it’ll be worth the wait.

Any guesses on when they’ll finish?

21 Comment

  • It seemed like nothing was going on there for a good while. They’re finishing up pretty quickly now though – Luckily for me I only really drive on Sherman south of Harvard 🙂

  • It was originally scheduled to be down in late August if that is any indication. Though it appears they have upped the efforts in the past month, perhaps getting some pressure to finish before the year end?

  • I’ve noticed in the completed sections farther north, they’ve foregone the landscaped medians for yellow lines. I’m wondering if this is only temporary (to get the project finished on time); the medians were value-engineered out; or perhaps there was never an intention to extend the medians that far north in the first place.

    • Partially answered my own question — according to the March 2011 presentation, it looks like landscaped medians are planned for all blocks except between Harvard and Columbia. Perhaps I need to take a closer look next time I pass through to see where they do and don’t have the median.

      • The areas that don’t have a median likely have a street that doesn’t go all the way through, like Hobart. There is no median in that section to allow people turning out of Hobart to make the left.

        DDOT has updated the Pleasant Plains Civic Assn and ANC 1B Transportation Committee several times over the past year about the project. They were delayed in several instances due to utilities – once they started digging, they realized pipes were not where they thought they were, and needed to be replaced. Additionally, all the utilities had to coordinate their projects with DDOT to complete while the road was torn up. DDOT mentioned PEPCO as one of the main culprits in this issue – PEPCO was not ready when they said they would be and took longer than they claimed to finish work.

  • Are you kidding me? Every project has delays and if the delay here is only a month or two, you’re ahead of the game. Patience! Besides, the silver line to Dulles has been delayed by years. I’d find that rail line to be so useful, will that ever get done?

  • I emailed Jim Graham about this project a few weeks ago when the crosswalk safety situation was completely out of control. He said they’re 3 months behind schedule. The contractor had a tougher-than-planned time dealing with utilities it would seem, and that led to some of the delay.

    If you want to go straight to the horse’s mouth, the contractor point of contact is [email protected]
    The project is slated for a December completion.

  • What’s worse is the construction confusion paired with the cyclists who blow right through red lights across Sherman to gain momentum up the hill to Georgia. The number of people that come within inches of my car (without a helmet) when I very clearly had the right of way astound me. It is hard enough driving through there at night, but these jackwagons make it 1,000 times worse.

  • Yeah, it’s a mess. I pick up the 63 on Sherman and I’m definitely looking forward to it being done so I don’t have to stand in a construction zone anymore. Although, I will say, the construction workers have been great about making sure that my fellow commuters and I have a safe place to stand, so that’s appreciated.

  • Yeah, that makes “sense”. Schedule 630 days to redo a mile of road and the utilities underneath.

    Pretty ridiculous considering they excavated the foundation and built the 102 story empire state building in 410 days.

    There is zero excuse for any delays considering they would frequently go a week or more without any workers even being onsite to do work.

    Having some experience in this, heavy highway contractors treat DC jobs as their schedule fillers, because DDOT doesn’t have one remotely experienced project or contracts manager.

    This isn’t the case in Montgomery County, Arlington or Fairfax.

    • Not sure you should try using the “Empire State Bldg.” example. I did that a while back when people were talking about the construction on U Street.

      Though I wouldn’t argue your point about DC DDOT having experienced project/contract managers, delays happen all the time, all over the world, for lots of different reason. When you look at VA do you factor in the line to Dulles that has been in the making for years? The reasons for the delay may slightly vary but the proof is in the pudding. We ain’t got no pudding on the tracks to Dulles.

      • There is no DOT in VA responsible for the Silver Line. They shockingly decided to hand off the largest construction project in America 3 years running to a room full of junior MBA’s and an unqualified Board of entitled tax money spendthrifts whose biggest infrastructure project to date had been repaving a runway.

        Arlington and Alexandria are constantly replacing roads and the utilities within them. I have never, never seen them take 2 years to do it.

        • Sorry, I see my original response to you omitted the word “with.” I wouldn’t argue with your point about DC DDOT. All I am saying is that with projects that involve more than self, they always have delays and take longer than they should or expected. And they also have delays when only self is involved because there is always that beautiful gift of the “unexpected or oops, didn’t plan for, take that into account.” Although some of the delay of the silver line is due to money issues/funding (isn’t it often), I’m pretty okay with a couple of months delay, if they deliver in December, as suggested.

  • A few months overdue is actually great for a construction project of this complexity. I don’t doubt for a second that Pepco was the one holding the project up. My neighbor did a complete gut job on an abandoned house and had to wait nearly 6 months for Pepco to show up and connect the electricity. Another Pepco horror story was when a transformer in the sidewalk outside my office building was exploding. The fire fighters couldn’t do anything until Pepco showed up and it took them more than an hour.

  • I’m going to miss driving down the bumpy-construction version of Sherman in my car2go smart car!

  • So obviously two years isn’t enough time to complete an eighteen month job. Give them another six months, it will be done eventually.

  • I live on Sherman and have attended the community meetings. Oddly, when I moved there in 2007, my realtor told me there were plans to fix the street………..5 years later.

    They started in late 2010, and the city gave them until July 2012 to finish it. They came NO WHERE close to finishing it by then and blamed it on other things…like PEPCO not having electric lines properly mapped out. Then the city gave them until December to finish it. The construction company promised they would finish it by October, ahead of the new construction timeline.

    Bottom line, it looks nice, but you couldn’t convince me to let this construction company build anything for me.

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