Pity the Car

I agree with David Alpert that this is a phenomenally stupid use of Washington Post journalistic resources. Essentially, Eric Weiss went around the suburbs asking folks to bitch about the District’s efforts to make the District a better place for people who live and pay taxes in the District. I especially enjoyed the fact that the story appeared on the same day as this piece about Tysons Corner’s efforts to erase some of its many, many acres of parking (“District drivers feeling shunned,” the headline could say).

The obvious point is that everyone in the region, and indeed the nation, is trying to do this. Maryland and Virginia are trying to make their urban places less car-friendly, for the very good reason that car-friendliness in dense, growing urban places has proven to be an abject failure. And the brighter folks in Maryland and Virginia have learned that their citizens seem to prefer living near transit, so that they don’t have to drive into the District.

The Post has taken a bizarrely backward view on this issue. Good cities are built to serve people, not cars. Sadly, our city’s paper of record is among the last to get it.


  1. Ralph Garboushian says:

    The Post’s bigges adviertisers are suburban home builders and car dealers and they have always been the lead local cheerleaders for more highways and more sprawl. Poor Eric Weiss, he thought that landing a job at the Post would lead to real stories and real journalism and not puff pieces for AAA, the home builders and the rest of the highway/sprawl lobby.

  2. Dave Murphy says:

    I was absolutely blown away that both of those articles were printed in the same paper on the same day.

    We’re lucky DC hasn’t levied any tolls on its roads. Driving isn’t a “god-given right” as commenter RedskinsFan1 stated on Weiss’ article. Driving is a privilege. Though I disagree with the closing of the 395 tunnel at this point in time, I think we’re abusing our privilege to drive in the city anytime we speed, drive aggressively, park illegally, or treat any city street like a traffic gutter.

    Please fix up NY Av. Take out a couple lanes and lower the speed limit. Make it what it should be: an open boulevard with a vista to the White House.

  3. IMGoph says:

    i feel like a campaign along the lines of “dc for dc residents” is needed here somewhere. yeah, i don’t really believe that, but there’s such a sense of entitlement that some people from the ‘burbs have with regard to our town that we could NEVER have the other way around (imagine the paper interviewing washingtonians asking us if we agree with things that alexandria is doing to make the city nicer for its residents).

  4. Dave M. says:

    RE: “We’re lucky DC hasn’t levied any tolls on its roads.”

    It’s not luck, it’s a lack of true home rule. Tolls are a dead issue with Congress so no one makes a serious proposal.