Dear PoP – Southwest Circulator Route and other Changes


Photo by PoPville flickr user fromcaliw/love

“Dear PoP,

You’ve probably already heard, but the Convention Center to Southwest Waterfront Circulator route is in danger of being terminated. A new “Priority Plan” recommends that the route end for two years and a new route be added in 2012. This Circulator route directly connects the hotels in the Convention Center area to Southwest Waterfront and provides a really important economic boost to the Arena Stage, Southwest marina and the few new businesses that have begun opening in the area. The city has invested millions of tax payer dollars in Southwest Waterfront’s revival – ending a key transportation source will seriously undermine the economic growth spurred by that investment.

If readers want to submit their comments in support of maintaining the route, they can do so on Circulator’s website here.”

Hmm, according to the press release below it looks like there will still be SW service.

From a DDOT press release:

On April 1, 2011, the DC Circulator will implement service changes affecting the Smithsonian-National Gallery of Art route, the Union Station-Navy Yard route, and the Convention Center-SW Waterfront route. Public notice of these changes was made on March 2 and a public meeting was held to discuss them on March 17. Details of the changes are as follows:

  • All service will end on the Smithsonian-National Gallery of Art route. Last year, an average of 2,427 passengers per month – fewer than 11 passengers an hour – utilized this route. The District was subsidizing each passenger an average of $11.50 per trip and has decided to end the service because it did not meet ridership or financial targets. (All historic ridership metrics can be found on our performance measures dashboard located at circulatordashboard.dc.gov.) Visitors to the National Mall should consult GoDCGo.com or the Metro Trip Planner at wmata.com to discover alternative public transit options in the National Mall area.
  • Savings gained from ending the Smithsonian-National Gallery of Art route will be reinvested to extend hours on the Union Station-Navy Yard route, providing a great travel option for evening activities on Capitol Hill and in the Capitol Riverfront area. Beginning April 1 through September 30, 2011, this route will operate Monday through Friday from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and on Saturdays from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • On Nationals home game days, the Union Station-Navy Yard route will continue to operate later into the evening and on Sundays in order to transport fans to and from baseball games. A 2011 baseball schedule with Circulator service hours can be found at DCCirculator.com under the “Where We Go” tab.
  • In the Southwest Waterfront area, service will be moved off Water Street, SW and onto Maine Avenue, SW, a very short distance away. Circulator stops will move to Maine Avenue at 7th Street, SW and Maine Avenue at 9th Street, SW. This change is made necessary due to pending construction of the Washington Kastles stadium on Water Street that will narrow traffic lanes.

You can see the full plan in pdf below:

Circulator-Transit-Development-Plan_Draft-Final_3-23-11

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