As a college student at American University, I have a hard time getting to Georgetown. For one, I don’t have a car on campus, so that’s not an option. (Even if I did have a car, I most likely wouldn’t drive to Georgetown anyway. The few parking lots they do have are expensive and really hard to park in, and there’s never any street spots. Also, there is always crazy traffic on M Street, so why would I want to add to that?). My first instinct (and many others I’m sure) is to take the metro. However, Georgetown lacks a metro stop. Because of the lack of a metro stop and the fact that I lack access to a car, my only three remaining options are walking, bussing, or ubering to Georgetown. I have walked before – it’s long, but all downhill – however I’m rarely able to find anyone who likes long walks like I do. Bussing is easy – shuttle to Tenleytown, hop on a 30 bus, boom you’re there! – but it takes three times the amount of time it takes to uber. Ubering is an expensive luxury not available to everyone (you must have a phone, a credit card, and obviously the funds), so really the only logical (and cheapest) option for me and other non-Georgetown students is to bus.
By not including a metro stop with easy access to Georgetown, there is a large demographic who aren’t able to visit with ease. In his book City of Rhetoric, author David Fleming touches on this idea: the reasoning behind leaving out a metro stop is architectural exclusion. Another author who writes about architectural exclusion is Sarah Schindler. In her article “Architectural Exclusion: Discrimination and Segregation Through Physical Design of the Built Environment,” Schindler gives many examples of how small design elements can add up on top of each other contributing to institutionalized racism and classism. (When I googled ‘Sarah Schindler’ to be able to add a hyperlink to her page, I stumbled across one of my classmate’s projects. Although her mapping commonplace isn’t Georgetown, she mentioned Georgetown’s lack of a metro stop in her first reading analysis here. I know I’m getting off topic here, but I wanted to take the time to say that I think it’s really cool how we’re all connected over the internet. What an amazing tool!)
Here is some further reading on the Georgetown Metro Myth: