Pennsylvania and Potomac Avenues SE Intersection Pedestrian Safety Improvement Project

Project Overview

The Pennsylvania and Potomac Avenues SE Intersection Pedestrian Safety Improvement Project proposes to enhance safety at these street intersections for neighborhood pedestrians and transit users of the Potomac Avenue Metrorail Station and the numerous area bus stops.

The current configuration of the six-legged intersection has multiple crosswalk locations making crosswalk signal timing challenging. Despite the numerous crosswalk locations, pedestrians traverse the intersection through the grassed median owned by the National Park Service. Proposed intersection changes will seek to reduce the number of pedestrian and vehicle conflict points and provide safer, more direct routes for the pedestrian and transit users.

An environmental planning study of the impacts from reconfiguring the intersection began in early 2009 but was put on hold and restarted in Fall 2012.

The study is anticipated to be concluded with the completion of the Final Environmental Assessment in Fall 2014.

The project was originally proposed in the 2005 Middle Anacostia River Crossings Transportation Study (MAC) as a mid-term improvement for enhancing the transportation network in the Middle Anacostia River region.

Why Is DDOT Evaluating This Intersection?

  • The Pennsylvania Avenue SE, Potomac Avenue SE, and 14th Street SE intersection has multiple striped crosswalk locations, which creates pedestrian and driver confusion.
  • Current striped crosswalks provide indirect means to cross Pennsylvania Avenue SE.
  • Pedestrians have created a more direct path through the grassed median of Pennsylvania Avenue SE. This path is not striped and not included in the pedestrian signal timing.

Project Needs

  • Enhance pedestrian safety for residents and multi-modal transit users traveling in and around the Pennsylvania Ave SE, Potomac Ave SE, and 14th Street SE intersection.
  • Meet District of Columbia Comprehensive Plan Transportation Planning Elements and Policies investing in pedestrian connections as a means to enhance multi-modal use.
  • Align with Regional and District transportation planning policies to reduce reliance on the automobile through investment at transit centers.

Proposed Project Design Concepts

Three design concepts are currently under DDOT review for the project:

Concept 1: No Build

No changes would be proposed to the intersection of Pennsylvania Ave SE, Potomac Ave SE, and 14th St SE.

Concept 2: Mid-Block Crosswalk

A signalized mid-block crosswalk at Pennsylvania Ave SE would be constructed.

Concept 3: T-Intersections

The Potomac Ave SE intersections with Pennsylvania Ave SE would be reconstructed to connect  “T” configurations.

Public Meeting Materials

Download Project Fact Sheet PDF


Milestone Date
Circulate Draft Environmental Assessment and Hold Public Meeting Spring/Summer 2014
Issue Final Environmental Assessment and Project Decision Fall 2014


  • $3.3 million

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