WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Report: Army Used Poor Data For BRAC Traffic Assessment

Play associated audio
Critics of the DoD's new Mark Center building say the 6000 workers scheduled to start working there in September could add an extra two hours of traffic for commuters on I-395.
Jonathan Wilson
Critics of the DoD's new Mark Center building say the 6000 workers scheduled to start working there in September could add an extra two hours of traffic for commuters on I-395.

The U.S. military used poor data in a traffic assessment it conducted before relocating thousands of workers in Northern Virginia through its Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC), according to a new report [PDF] from the Department of Defense's Inspector General. Virginia lawmakers are furious over the findings.

The traffic surrounding Alexandria’s Mark Center -- the new home to DOD's Washington Headquarters Service located at Interstate-395 and Seminary Road -- is bad now, and the new report says it’s only going to get worse unless Army officials act soon. The Pentagon is shifting more than 6,000 people to the new office complex, but outside experts say the roads surrounding the space can't handle all the new traffic.

Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) says the Army seems to have misled local and federal leaders in order to get speedy approval of their relocation plan. "It appears that there was, in a sense, cooking the books going on, in terms of when and how these first traffic studies were conducted," says Warner.

Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.) says the Army created the mess and now it's their duty to come up with a plan to avoid turning some roads in Alexandria into parking lots. "We can avoid chaos if we act now," he says. "We would like for them to come up with some solutions themselves, but we do think there are some practical solutions.” 

Moran is calling on the Pentagon to limit the number of open parking spaces at the Mark Center and consider shuttling in some workers to decrease the expected congestion. The Army is questioning its own inspector general's report, and says it's already providing more than $20 million for road improvements in the area.

NPR

In Iran, A Poet's 700-Year-Old Verses Still Set Hearts Aflame

The 14th century Persian poet Hafez remains venerated in Iran, even though he wrote of wine, romance and other topics not necessarily welcome in today's Islamic Republic.
NPR

Buy Crop Insurance, Double Your Money

The nation's crop insurance program is really a lottery, says one economist. And it's rigged so that farmers win. In fact, farmers typically get back double the money they pay for premiums.
WAMU 88.5

The Politics Hour - February 12, 2016

D.C. Council Member Yvette Alexander (D-Ward 7) joins Kojo and Tom Sherwood to chat about her upcoming fight for re-election.

NPR

Do You Like Me? Swiping Leads To Spike In Online Dating For Young Adults

A study by the Pew Research Center finds the use of online dating sites has mushroomed in the past few years, particularly among 18- to 24-year-olds.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.