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Old streetcar line photo courtesy of DDOT.

Councilmember Tommy Wellsbill to allow overhead wires to power the planned streetcar network is set for a hearing this afternoon in the Wilson Building. Twenty-eight people are signed up to testify (full list after the jump), from preservationists to environmentalists to H Street-affiliated groups that most need the overhead wire technology available now, rather than the wireless technology that is in development.

One of those signed up is George Clark, president of the Committee of 100 on the Federal City, with whom Housing Complex spoke last week for a separate story. Here’s a preview of what we can expect from his testimony:

“We’ve always been public transportation advocates. But we’re not advocates of doing things in a slipshod manner. We’ve just become terribly disappointed in what we’ve seen as a lack of planning on the H street route,” Clark said, criticizing the state of planning for the terminus of the route at Union Station. “That’s the kind of thing that ends up with the city wasting tens of millions of dollars. We’ve said, let’s do streetcars right.”

“When I look down Pennsylvania Avenue, I see a vista. I don’t see overhead wires, utility or otherwise. I see clear views. I think someone was pretty smart back in 1889,” Clark continued. “By the time this system could be fully built, streetcar technology is going to be wireless. Quite frankly, I don’t see why there should be wires in H street and Anacostia, and wireless downtown and in Georgetown. One of the things in the committee we’re always trying to do is be more inclusive and citywide.”

Housing Complex will be getting a root canal during the hearing, but remains confident that recaps will abound. If you’d like to tune in during work, the webcast is here.

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Council of the District of Columbia Committee on Public Works and Transportation Agenda and Witness List

COUNCILMEMBER JIM GRAHAM, CHAIRPERSON COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC WORKS AND TRANSPORTATION

ANNOUNCES A PUBLIC HEARING ON

B18-823, the “Transportation Infrastructure Amendment Act of 2010”

Tuesday, June 22, 2010, 2:00 p.m. Council Chamber, John A. Wilson Building 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, D.C.  20004 ____________________________________________________________

AGENDA & WITNESS LIST

I.    CALL TO ORDER

II.    OPENING REMARKS

III.    PUBLIC WITNESSES

Panel 1 1.    Rich Bradley, President, DC Surface Transit, Inc. 2.    Jason Broehm, Chair, Transportation Committee Sierra Club – Washington DC Chapter 3.    Anwar Saleem, Executive Director, H Street Main Street 4.    Alison Reardon

Panel 2 5.    Bradley Green 6.    Tom Metcalf 7.    Ellen McCarthy 8.    Brett Rodgers

Panel 3 9.    Liz de Bagara 10.    Kenneth Archer 11.    Tony Richardson, Commissioner ANC 6C05 12.    David Holmes, Commissioner ANC 6A03

Panel 4 13.    Meg Maguire, Committee of 100 on the Federal City 14.    Monte Edwards, Capitol Hill Restoration Society 15.    George Clark, Chairman, Committee of 100 on the Federal City 16.    David Alpert, www.greatergreaterwashington.org

Panel 5 17.    Andrea Ferster, DC Surface Transit Inc. 18.    Crystal Sullivan 19.    Mark Bradshaw, Rappaport Management Company and Parcel Services Associates, LLC 20.    Martin Schroeder, American Public Transportation Association

Panel 6 21.    Scott Leonard 22.    Michael Stevens, Executive Director, Capitol Riverfront BID 23.    Jeff Oser 24.    David Bernhardt

Panel 7 25.    Jerry Clark, Chair, DC for Democracy 26.    Jen DeMayo,  Communications Director, Atlas Performing Arts Center 27.    Samuel Swiller, Associate Director, Real Estate Development Gallaudet University 28.    Lance Brown

IV.    GOVERNMENT WITNESSES

Gabe Klein, Director of the District Department of Transportation