Mystery Sidewalk Markings Related to Pepco Project

Mystery markings some have likened to sidewalk graffiti along Fenton Street are a part of the Pepco project to replace the 69kV underground lines between the Takoma and Sligo substations.

The Source queried the offices of several public officials, who in turn forwarded information from both Pepco and the Department of Permitting Services.

According to a DPS response to Councilmember Tom Hucker’s office (D-District 5), “The painted surveyed markings were to establish field adjustments and offsets for the proposed work/detail. Unfortunately, more than the usual markings were painted due to changes made from the initial stakeout. Found conflicting elements with existing unknown underground Pepco utility vaults which in return supplied the new development site at 8455 Fenton Street known as Central/Grosvenor (assuming a over-sight/missed in Pepco’s design) (sic).”

Pepco also responded to Silver Spring Regional Services Director Reemberto Rodriguez with the following:

“These are survey marks provided by Dewberry Engineering to reference points in which we can measure off the exact location of our trench in the road. This is water-based paint and will disappear over a few months or sooner. If need be, to accelerate, we can wash them away when finished without a problem.”

The project began in 2018 and Pepco expects to complete the work in December 2022.

Any inquiries about the construction or related issues can be directed to Pepco’s Community Advocate/Outreach, Tami Watkins, senior external affairs specialist, at

Photo courtesy David Asch, who first brought this to our attention. Map from Pepco’s website.

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