Coalition forms to push the Georgetown-Rosslyn gondola idea

WASHINGTON — A plan for an aerial gondola connecting Georgetown with Rosslyn over the Potomac was first floated more than five years ago, and a feasibility study in 2016 seemed to give the idea some credibility.

However, any plans to do it have not meaningfully advanced.

Now a coalition of 35 area stakeholders hopes to breathe new life into the gondola idea.

The Georgetown-Rosslyn Gondola Coalition’s members include a diverse list of organizations from the Federal City Council, to Georgetown University, Georgetown Business Improvement District and private sector members.

The coalition supports further study and development of the aerial gondola linking Georgetown to the Rosslyn Metro, with a goal of winning support from D.C., Virginia and regional and congressional leaders and approvals from local, state, regional and federal regulatory bodies.

“To remain globally competitive, the Washington region must seize every opportunity to improve connectivity with better transit,” said Anthony A. Williams, former D.C. mayor and current CEO of the Federal City Council.

“Urban gondolas have proven their value in cities across the globe and there is no better place to introduce them to this region than by connecting the people, jobs, and retail of Georgetown and Rosslyn,” Williams said.

Funding would be some form of a public and private partnership should a gondola project move forward.

Georgetown BID argues that a gondola could be built decades before a Georgetown Metro station and at a fraction of the cost.

The 2016 study, which cost $215,000 and was paid for by the District Department of Transportation, Arlington County, Rosslyn BID, Georgetown University, Gould Property, JBG Companies, Penzance and the Georgetown BID, determined that a gondola could carry as many as 6,500 people on the four-minute ride a day, back and forth between Georgetown and Rosslyn.

The study also estimates the cost of building the aerial gondola at between $80 million and $90 million.

Here are the inaugural members of the Georgetown-Rosslyn Gondola Collation:

  • Federal City Council
  • Georgetown University
  • Georgetown BID
  • JBG Smith
  • Snell Properties
  • Monumental Sports & Entertainment
  • DC Sustainable Transportation
  • Rosslyn BID
  • The Levy Group
  • Prospect Street Homeowners
  • Institute for Market Transformation
  • Greater Greater Washington
  • Avison Young
  • Coalition for Smarter Growth
  • Tishman Speyer
  • Monday Properties
  • Chaia
  • Clyde’s Restaurant Group
  • Cox Graae & Spack Architects
  • The Elliott LLC
  • Friends of Legal Services Corporation
  • Georgetown Court Condominium LLC
  • Georgetown Suites
  • Gould Property Company
  • Hays LL
  • J Street Companies
  • Martin’s Tavern
  • Medstar Georgetown University Hospital
  • Nick’s Riverside Grill
  • Penzance
  • The Phoenix
  • Prospect Place Associates LLC
  • Prospect Place Parking LLC
  • TD Bank
  • Tony & Joe’s Seafood Place

Copyright © 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow @WTOP on Twitter to engage in conversation about this article and others.

© 2018 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up