Metro Looks to Adjust Bus Stop Where Woman Was Hit

By James Hohmann
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, October 8, 2009; 4:32 PM

Metro officials have reached out to the District to inquire about moving the bus stop where a woman got off seconds before another Metrobus fatally struck her this week, representatives from both agencies said Thursday.

Stephanie Richardson, 47, of Northeast Washington died Tuesday, less than 24 hours after a Metrobus struck her on Mount Olivet Road NE, between Trinidad and Montello avenues. The bus stop was in the middle of the block, and there was no crosswalk nearby. So Richardson jaywalked, something many do at that location.

D.C. Department of Transportation spokesman John Lisle said that someone from Metro is talking with his department's pedestrian program coordinator to decide whether to install a crosswalk in the middle of the block, move the stop or leave things as they are.

"We are looking at it," he said. "At the same time, it's important to keep in mind that apparently there's a lot of mid-block bus stops. We're not going to be able to get rid of all of them. Even if we do move them all, that's not going to eliminate jaywalking."

Metro General Manager John B. Catoe Jr. stressed that moving a bus stop -- of which there are more than 12,000 -- requires advance work and planning.

"This is a long, tedious process," he said. "We do not independently choose bus stops."

Lisle said a D.C. employee needs to assess the impact on other curbside uses, including parking. If moving a stop impacted even a single parking spot, the District would have to allow formal public comment through the Advisory Neighborhood Commission.

At the bus stop involved in Monday's accident is a concrete path for those waiting to catch the bus.

"So if we moved the stop, we'd have to put in a new" path, Lisle said.

Catoe pleaded with pedestrians not to jaywalk.

"Even though that stop was mid-block, if someone's going to be crossing the street, we want them to go to an intersection or a control light," he said.

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