CFA 21/JUL/22-3


K Street between 12th & 21st Streets, NW
Washington, DC
United States

D.C. Department of Transportation
K Street Transitway Project
Roadway reconfiguration and landscape improvements
Review Type


Dear Mr. Lott:

In its public meeting of 21 July conducted by videoconference, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed a concept design for the new K Street Transitway, to be located along K Street between 12th and 21st Streets, NW. The Commission approved the concept with the following comments and recommendations.

The Commission members observed that the proposal would be an improvement over the current conditions of K Street, potentially softening the relatively harsh context of extensive pavement within such a broad street right-of-way. Expressing strong support for the deliberate placement of trees to define view corridors and to provide shade, they recommended establishing a more consistent line of trees along the medians and maximizing the extent of natural landscape. For the development of the proposal, they recommended improving the clarity of the design, particularly at potential points of conflict among pedestrians, bicyclists, buses, and general traffic to address safety. They commented that wayfinding signage would be an important component of the design, as well as lighting to enhance nighttime safety, particularly for the bicycle lanes.

In their discussion, the Commission members observed that the K Street Transitway is presented as a stand-alone proposal, and they raised concerns about the lack of documentation regarding the conditions of adjacent streets and the project’s impact within the context of the neighborhood, which they requested be included in future presentations. However, acknowledging that the transitway has a more limited scope than what was originally envisioned as a crosstown corridor with streetcar service, they concluded that this project will elevate the quality of K Street and the associated modes of transportation, potentially serving as a pilot project for other parts of the city.

The Commission looks forward to further review of this important infrastructure project. Please continue to consult with the staff which, as always, is available to assist you.

/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA

Everett Lott, Director
D.C. Department of Transportation
250 M Street, SE
Washington, DC 20003

cc: Gerard Baxter, JMT
Adrienne Ameel, Kimley-Horn
Adrienne McCray, Lee & Associates