Friday, October 14, 2011

Is Metro minimizing "Petworth"? Should they add "Park View"?

Is Metro looking to change the name of the Georgia Avenue-Petworth Metro? An reader on the Petworth Yahoo Listserve spotted that in the proposed Metro map, it says "Georgia Ave" with "Petworth" in small letters underneath.

I can't link to the discussion because I am not (yet) a member, but basically some folks say that's a dumb name and should be changed.

Georgia Avenue is a very long street and actually goes well into Maryland, it doesn't make sense to use it for a specific neighborhood. Would there be a 16th Street Metro? Pennsylvania Avenue? No. (I know there are New York Ave. and Rhode Island Ave. Metro stations, but I think those are kind of dumb names too.)

A few readers make the point that the Metro station should have Park View in the name, and considering the streets are also mentioned on the new map, Georgia Avenue is redundant. The Park View name was mentioned before and supported by the ANC. Here's resident Brian's post on the matter:
The WMATA goals for updating the maps are to reduce redundancies, increase consistencies and improve location descriptions without adding more word space.  These goals are not achieved with the current draft map.
Redundant - WMATA uses 4 words to describe the stop: Georgia, Petworth, Georgia, New Hampshire.  There is no need to use the descriptor Georgia twice when we only have four words to work with.  One instance of Georgia should be removed to reduce redundancy.
Consistent - Each metro location stop shows the intersecting streets on third line.  We should keep Georgia Avenue as a description of the street in the third line and remove it from the title to ensure consistency across all station stops.
Description - Since we removed one word from the stop name, we can add another word that describes the neighborhood metro stop without increasing word space.  Adding Park View would increase the descriptive nature of the station stop without increasing the space on the map.
Changing the Stop from:
Georgia Av [sic]
Georgia Ave & New Hampshire Ave
Petworth – Park View (or put Park View on second line)
Georgia Ave & New Hampshire Ave
would meet WMATAs goals in updating the station maps.
(Full disclosure, Brian is my buddy, but it's a good point in any case.)

Your thoughts?


  1. AGREED! I don't think WMATA would consider changing the Tenleytown-AU stop's name to Wisconsin Avenue even though that station is right on Wisconsin Avenue.

    Changing the metro stop's name to Petworth-Park View would give a stronger sense of place than Georgia Avenue. If WMATA decides to rename this stop Georgia Avenue, it will give the impression that this one metro station serves an entire aveneue that's over 30 miles long.

    We must create a groundswell of customer feeback to WMATA to let them know we cannot abide by this! Otherwise they will go ahead with the proposed change and sweep our dissention under its tracks.

  2. Also agreed. Petworth-Park View sounds perfect to me.

  3. There are also "Braddock Road" and "King Street" in Alexandria, even though the former runs well into Fairfax. Stations don't have to be named after neighborhoods, and subways traditionally use street names for stations.

    It's fine if such a long street as Georgia Avenue is known to be centered in the Petworth area. I'm not sure how it would benefit Park View to have its name in the Metro station since it doesn't have any major developments or tourist attractions (correct me if I'm wrong).

    "Park View" is also a somewhat outdated name since the park that it has a view to is no longer open to the public. Not well known other than locally, all it would do for most people is add clutter.

  4. About streets, you're right in that others use them, but why not be more specific? I think Park View is well-known locally, and should be more well-known.

    As for attractions or developments, is there a lot going on in Dunn Loring-Merrifield? Twinbrook? I have never heard of those places aside from as Metro stops.

  5. A positive change about the new map is that they have all the streets on the map so you don't need to put them in station names.

    If I lived in Alexandria, I would be bitching about King Street and Braddock Road. How about Old Town?

  6. The old map had the street names too for the purpose of identifying intersections (say, in case there's a long street and you don't know where the station is). :)

    Merrifield has had a lot of development lately. It's a bit far from the station at the intersection of Lee Highway and Gallows Road, but it is something of a landmark. The main U.S. Post Office is also there.

    What bragging rights does Park View have?

    Signs pointing the way to the neighborhoods Mt. Pleasant and Pleasant Plains were recently added to the Columbia Heights Metro station. Should Mt. Pleasant be added to that station as well? I would argue no.

    Station names are only needed to differentiate among stations within the system. They shouldn't be a laundry list of everything near them (I wouldn't mind taking Merrifield off of Dunn Loring either if I had the choice).

  7. I don't think Park View is well known and would not be helpful as a metro stop name. Just because a neighborhood has a name doesn't mean that it anyone knows it or uses it.


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