Sunday, October 15, 2017

Woodmont Avenue Signage -- FAIL

Suppose you are on Bethesda Avenue in Bethesda, Maryland, and you ask for directions to the Bethesda Metro Station, about a ten minute walk away.

You might be told to walk north on Woodmont Avenue to Edgemoor Lane, and then turn right.  After two blocks (at Hampden Lane), Woodmont Avenue becomes one way southbound.

Is the next street Edgemoor Lane?

You have no idea.  The street name signs only face the southbound automobile traffic.

You look off to the right, and can't see anything.  You don't know that the accessible elevator entrance to the Metrorail Station is just two blocks down Montgomery Lane.  So you keep walking north.

At the next corner (North Lane, which is labeled), a small sign for Metro points toward this hodgepodge of driveways and passageways.  This could get you to the buses and the Metrorail escalator, but you would have to climb stairs, so it's not an accessible route.

You continue on to the next intersection, still hoping to find Edgemoor Lane.  Once again, pedestrians cannot tell where they are because the signs only face the southbound automobile traffic.

You look off to the right.  Could that be the Metro station?

Does Montgomery County design for pedestrians or for automobiles?  On Woodmont Avenue, in the heart of downtown Bethesda, the design for the street name signs doesn't even include pedestrians as an afterthought.


  1. People have begged for better signage, a protected bike lane, and a safe, accessible Metro entrance there for years. Basically since Metro opened, with that entrance designed for trucks. Even cars get confused since it's unclear where to drop off passengers (kiss and ride). It's not a priority until someone is hit or killed.

  2. And one more point: Walking inside the bus terminal to reach the top of the Metro station is not pleasant. An older friend of mine with mild balance issues has a lot of trouble navigating among the bike crates, the bus shelters, the narrow sidewalks, and of course the pools of urine.