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Work reversed on Rock Creek intersection after complaint

Thursday - 8/11/2011, 1:58pm  ET

rockcreekparkway/google maps
About $10,000 was spent on work at this intersection, according to the National Park Service. (Courtesy Google Maps)

Hank Silverberg,

WASHINGTON - Work has been stopped and $10,000 wasted on construction at a major intersection after a complaint that environmental plans were not being followed correctly.

The stoppage has occurred at the intersection of Waterside Drive and southbound Rock Creek Parkway, where the lack of an adequate acceleration lane has been a safety issue for years.

"We were not doing exactly what we had intended to do under the 2006 environmental assessment," says National Park Service spokesman Bill Line. "We've made immediate steps to stop that action."

The issue affects only about a 700-foot stretch of Rock Creek Parkway. Line says about $10,000 was spent on the project before a citizen alerted the park service through an email that the fix was not going to work as initially planned in 2006. Line declined to identify the person who sent the email.

The park service and the Federal Highway Administration -- the agencies doing the work -- are now going to restore the intersection to what it was before, remove construction equipment and reopen public comments on alternative solutions.

Line says that process could take as long as 10 months.

Line says the reversal will not affect the overall $7.1 million upgrade for Rock Creek Parkway. The stoppage also will not affect other park service projects along Cathedral Avenue, Shoreham Drive and Beach Drive. The work on all the roadways is about halfway complete and funded by federal stimulus dollars.

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