Don Alexander Hawkins’ topographic map of Washington, 1791.

Speeding you up isn’t the county’s only priority: A Bethesda driver writes the Gazette to complain about No Turn On Red signs. “We should do all we can to remove obstacles to efficient traffic flow,” he argues, but the county disagrees; with growing numbers of pedestrians, many intersections lack the visibility for drivers to turn right safely.

Uphill both ways: Combine new technology and dusty old archives, and you can see what Washington looked like in 1791, when L’Enfant first started designing a capital city.

Get a ride (and a human interaction designer): COG recently (re)launched Commuter Connections, a resource site for commuters. The new site features a carpool-matching service to match up those driving in similar directions, and Guaranteed Ride Home, which gives carpoolers a backup option for emergencies.

The program is a great one; the site itself a little more attractive than the typical governmental Web site, but similarly hard to navigate, with enormous numbers of links all the same size and many clicks required to get to anything useful. And the exciting heart of the site, the ride-matching, requires you to fill out forms and wade through legalese just to see it. Via We Love DC.

End Republican welfare: The City Paper criticizes the set-aside for non-Democrats in the Home Rule charter, where only one of the two at-large Councilmembers each year may come from the same party. The provision was originally included to appease Congressional Republicans, but even Carol Schwartz opposes it (at least publicly).

David Alpert is Founder and President of Greater Greater Washington and Executive Director of DC Sustainable Transportation (DCST). He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He lives with his wife and two children in Dupont Circle. Unless otherwise noted, opinions in his GGWash posts are his and not the official views of GGWash or DCST.