Friday, July 30, 2010
Georgia Avenue Pedestrian Road Safety Audit
I n March, 2009 I participated in a Road Safety Audit of Georgia Avenue. I spent 6 hours over two days with a team of people made of representatives from MCDOT, SHA, MC Police, Mel Tull, and neighborhood residents. This group was led by consultants hired by Montgomery County - as part of their HIA ( High Incidence Area) program. We walked Georgia from Sligo to Spring several times, taking note of conditions, talking about possible solutions, and discussing perspectives. I was their blind person, mostly.
MCDOT did the right thing here. This could be considered a proactive approach - even as part of a reactive program.They sent people who could participate at a high level. SHA sent a note-taker. She was a very nice person, but she had only been with SHA for 6 months, and couldn't really add anything to the discussion. She certainly did not know enough to answer questions about how SHA would see things. There was a feeling in the room ( which I believe was openly expressed) that this wasn't a priority for SHA.
Sgt Harmon was there from MC Police, and he was a great contributor.
About a year ago I started asking to see the report from the RSA. I took some calls, and reminding people that we spent two days working on the project, It wasn't cheap, so where is the report? It took a while, but I got the draft report a few weeks later. I asked if the team could get together once more to discuss the report, and I made a few suggestions about how to amend the document -- and that was the last I heard ofrom anyone. The repost has still not been released as a finished document.
That report provided a snapshot of the conditions on Georgia Avenue. Now that we have waited over a year, conditions have changed. Still, I think the 115-page report should be released so that the community can look it over. The result were interesting.