Room for Tunnel Access & Constructability?
Under the idea of deferring the tunnel, planning relies upon the idea of drilled (bored) rather than cut and cover tunneling: an option that is touted without consideration of soft soil conditions that may significantly increase the construction costs.
But it will still need an area for its inevitably cut and cover transition area for any ramp connections, perhaps at M Street as suggested by at least one of the year 2003 studies, and definitely at its north end with I-395.
Below is a map, created by The Washington Post, of that area's development.
Mouse over the numbered lots below for more information. The "'Near Southeast' D.C. Redevelopment" blog maintained by Post intranet editor Jacqueline Dupree also has dozens of photos showing changes in the neighborhood. A printable (PDF) version of this map is here.
GRAPHIC: Jacqueline Dupree and Nathaniel Vaughn Kelso, The Washington Post; Alyson Hurt and Brian Cordyack, washingtonpost.com - Aug. 15, 2005; updated Jan 17, 2006.
Note the plots at both these areas along
The stadium effectively blocks placing the tunnel east of
Hence, the tunnel would have to either to the east, beneath
If it were to not go to the west, and with planning seeking to eliminate the existing transitions near M Street by St. De Paul Church and Dominos Pizza, by process of elimination and such M Street area tunnel access would likely be along 1st Street SE. The parcels to the north of M Street have new development projects 80 M Street Wells Real Estate Investment Trust, office building completed 2001,First Street between M and L Streets, Faison Associates. The parcels to the south of M Street on the east side of 1st Street SE, ”First and M Streets” Cohen and Camilier families, are listed as a possible 700,000 square foot mixed use development, across a 1st Street from a Southeast Federal Center. One might ask if any of the existing planning studies outline any sort of right of way reservation for a northbound to surface ramp, or a southbound to tunnel ramp anywhere along this block of
Any reference to a planned tunnel alternative as a common element of all three bridge proposals, to use the studies that presented this tunnel, and the reality of the Nationals Stadium, as guides, most likely means the option of an alignment directly beneath
But regardless of the method or the route, any such tunnel will require space for cut and cover segments to connect with I-395, with a design that anticipates a concurrent or future under grounding of the SW/SE Freeway with minimal cost and demolition.
Looking south from the SW/SE Freeway:
Ramps to I-395 just north of I Street