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The city’s chief intermodal transportation center, Union Station already is home to Amtrak and high-speed commuter trains, Metrobus and rail, privately operated tour buses, rental car pickup and drop-offs, easy taxi services and retail and food establishments. In addition, placing a terminus there would situate riders within walking distance of Capitol Hill.

And what’s truly interesting is that D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray is already on record saying he wants the H Street/Benning Road line to cross the so-called “Hopscotch Bridge” on H Street and roll the streetcars into downtown Washington.

As things now stand, DDOT’s chief arguments against sites other than Spingarn are trumped up, as they are either tied to rising costs or land-ownership issues, highlighting the fact that the agency - and, ultimately, the mayor and the council - have yet to envision the long-term potential of streetcar lines, perhaps focusing a bit too closely on ribbon-cuttings and other hip-hip hoorays they want to take place in 2013.

Stakeholders interested in DDOT’s points of view can view them on the DC Streetcar website. Phoney baloney survey results are accessible there as well.

The website provides residents plenty of ammunition for Monday’s meeting, which, as Mr. McDuffie pointed out, is worthy of being labeled an “emergency.”

The streetcars are not yet in the station, giving residents and other stakeholders several opportunities to voice their displeasure or question certain aspects of the project, just as they are doing with Costco.

Deborah Simmons can be reached at