It shouldn’t surprise anyone that the popular Director of DDOT, Gabe Klein, is leaving. It appears that Vince Gray has asked the popular and effective director of the city’s transportation hub not to come back under his administration. Projects that Klein brought to the forefront during his four-year tenure include the DC Circulator, the beginnings of the Streetcar system, expanded bike lanes and counterflow lanes, and the new Capital Bikeshare system.
Klein was impressive in charge of DDOT, especially given that he had only a private sector background, coming from Zipcar. His projects were visionary, effective, and came to be talked about more than pretty much anything else that happened during the Fenty Administration, which was likely the cause of his departure. It’s also likely that Klein would have been stifled under a new Gray Administration with no money to spend on any urban transportation projects. That’s not a complete argument for him leaving, mind you, but it might suggest that we’re to look for a low-level functionary administrator instead of someone with actual ideas and plans.
Klein’s last day will be January 1st. If you’d like to thank Klein for the Circulator, or bike lanes, or the Bikeshare system, you’ve got until then.
Sorry to see you go, Mr. Klein.