AFTER READING YOUR COVerage of the National Capital Planning Commission’s (NCPC) action on the Whitehurst Freeway (“Street scape,” 10/15), I feel that some additional comments will contribute to the understanding of what transpired.
NCPC has made a concerted effort to work out a positive solution between the proposals offered by the Department of Public Works (DPW) and the concerns of the community, including the Committee of 100, for the completion of the east end of the freeway. An independent consultant was retained. In spite of what the article stated, a significant part of his recommendation was adopted by the commission at its Oct. 7 meeting. The other portions will undergo further study. Regardless of the results, the adopted NCPC position will result in more open space than was originally proposed by DPW.
Specifically, the commission requested that DPW revise its plans for the east end of the project and incorporate the alternative design for the southbound ramp from the Whitehurst Freeway east to I-66 recommended by the consultant. This will provide approximately two-and-one-half acres of additional parkland. Two components of the consultant’s proposal, however, were recommended for further study—the proposed realigned northbound ramp terminating at Pennsylvania Avenue in the vicinity of 27th Street and the at-grade connection on the south, terminating in the vicinity of Virginia Avenue and 27th Street. The changes to the westbound ramp from I-66 north to the Whitehurst were the only aspects of the consultant’s proposal excluded by the commission.
The issues are very complicated, and all the parties have made a full-faith effort to work out an acceptable solution. I think we have achieved this and, by doing so, have responded to and brought some consonance to differing points of view within the community.
Chairman, National Capital, Planning Commission, Foggy Bottom