Sheila Barton, Resident Board Member, gave the following testimony at the County Council CIP hearing last night.
Good evening. My name is Sheila Barton. I have been a resident board member of Friends of White Flint for two years and currently serve as treasurer. Prior to that, I was the chair of the Friends of White Flint Resident Ambassadors.
The 2,000 supporters of Friends of White Flint, including property owners, residents, and businesses, want the promise of the White Flint sector plans to be fulfilled. The implementation of those innovative sector plans is possible only through the funding of CIP projects. One of the underlying tenets of the White Flint sector plan is transit-oriented development. Needless to say, it is difficult to have transit-oriented development without transit, which is why we are extremely disappointed funding was eliminated in the CIP for a northern entrance for the White Flint metro station.
Now that Metro has eliminated the Grosvenor Turnback, more and more people are using the White Flint metro. A northern metro entrance significantly expands the metro walkshed, and it is critical to encouraging development in the Pike District. Friends of White Flint strongly urges you to fund the second metro entrance in this year’s CIP budget. It is simply not a reasonable strategy to ask a financially struggling WMATA to pay for this new entrance.
Walking and biking in the White Flint area continues to grow. Many more want to walk and bike to work, retail, and residences but are stymied because more needs to be done to make the White Flint area as walkable as possible as quickly as possible. As a resident of the White Flint/Pike District area and a Friends of White Flint board member, I ask you to fund the second metro entrance and essential pedestrian and bicycle improvements.
Through the CIP, the County sets its long-term priorities. Show that your priorities are multi-modal transit. Demonstrate that your priorities are transit-oriented development that encourages new development. Demonstrate your support for the transformation of the White Flint area through this CIP by fully funding a second metro entrance.