Sherman Avenue is looking a lot better these days. The city has just finished the Sherman Avenue Streetscape Project, where they added wider sidewalks, medians with baby trees, bike sharrows (the arrows that make it clear that cars should share the road) and other fixes to the formerly woebegone street. The improvements were on the entire length of Sherman, between Park Road and Florida Avenue.
The plan also reduced the number of traffic lanes from 4 to 2 in order to reduce the amount and speed of traffic on the street, which city officials described as a "raceway" before. (This is a pretty common method for traffic calming, as for some reason people drive slower on fewer, narrower lanes.)
There was a ribbon cutting on Tuesday, attended by Mayor Gray, Ward 1 councilman Graham, DDOT director Bellamy and various other local bigwigs.
I've only heard a few complaints from locals, mainly that some plants are already dead or need to be maintained better, but in general, this was a sorely needed fix -- Sherman was kind of a dump before.
And it seems to be helping (or at least not hurting), as a new restaurant, the Hilltop, is coming to Sherman and Georgia, and a lot of the abandoned houses are getting fixed up or torn down and rebuilt. Of course this isn't just because of the streetscape improvements, but the improvements do make it a lot nicer to walk around, and foot traffic is important for more local businesses to come in.
Jim Graham also posted a list of the improvements and some photos. Here are the improvements:
The following changes were made to Sherman Ave Northwest between Park Road and Florida Avenue: