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Ball Game Shuttle Working Well

A month into the baseball season, fans and commuters seem to be having a relatively easy time dealing with the new stadium on South Capitol Street.

Cruzer.jpg Take the shuttle from the shuttle. The e-cruzer picks people up on south side of Nats Express bus stop.(Thomson)

After a few weeks of wandering around the outside of the stadium to view the traffic and transit concerns raised by readers, I went to one of the Nationals-Mets games last week. We drove to Lot 8 on the south side of RFK Stadium, parked for free and took the free Nationals Express shuttle to Nationals Park.

This was a breeze. From Lot 8 to the stadium turnstyle took 19 minutes, or about half the time it took to get a hot dog during the game. The trip back to Lot 8 after the game was similarly easy.


Couple of things along the way:

There could be a few more signs on the roads and around the stadiums making plain that Lot 8 is the place to park for the free shuttle and helping people find their way back to it after games.

The bus stop is at 300 M St. SE. Getting off there, about five blocks from Nationals Park, it's not hard to figure out where the stadium is. Just follow the fans and head for the bright lights.

But you might also want to leave a bread crumb trail behind. Because after games, as fans fan out from the stadium, it's a little more difficult to find the bus's departure point. Maybe a few directional arrows, some markers on the pavement?

The Nationals have some excellent transportation guides on their Web site, including an interactive transportation map that shows the bus stop and the walking route to Nationals Park. It's less helpful for finding Lot 8, which fans can reach by the RFK Stadium access road off the Southeast-Southwest Freeway (the best route for many Virginia drivers) or by a combination of East Capitol Street and Independence Avenue SE.

One of my initial concerns about the free shuttle was the problem older, frail or disabled fans would face in walking the five blocks from bus stop to stadium. Some of the Nats Express buses are handicapped-accessible, but then what?

Well, a company based in Ocean City called e-cruzers.com runs electric-powered cars from the south side of M Street, by the U.S. Department of Transportation offices, over to the northeast side of the stadium. Anyone can hop aboard for free. But it's an especially good solution for people who have trouble walking, and I hope it can continue.

The vehicles have three rows of double seats, and look a bit like oversized golf carts.

By Robert Thomson  |  April 28, 2008; 9:29 AM ET
Categories:  Stadium  
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