News of transportation and transit across Fairfax County:
SUPERVISORS MULL ADDING PROJECTS TO FUNDING LIST: The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors on Jan. 28 was slated to consider a resolution that would submit a pair of city of Fairfax transportation projects near Oakton for possible Northern Virginia Transportation Authority regional funding in fiscal years 2024 and 2025.
The projects would:
• Replace a signalized intersection at Eaton Place and Chain Bridge Road with a two-lane roundabout. The crossing now has seven approaches, which lead to considerable delays at the intersection and major congestion on Chain Bridge Road, especially during peak periods, officials said.
City officials extensively analyzed alternatives and decided the two-lane roundabout was the best way to lower congestion, improve safety, maintain access and bolster mobility. Residents on Willow Crescent Drive would enter Chain Bridge Road via a new access point just north of Eaton Place. This intersection’s signal would be in the city of Fairfax, but would be installed by the Virginia Department of Transportation as part of its I-66 improvement project.
• Reconfigure southbound lanes on Jermantown Road to permit dual left-hand turns onto Lee Highway.This would allow city officials to allot more green-light time to Lee Highway, thus improving traffic flow for both passenger and transit vehicles.
The project also would install higher-visibility signals on mast arms and provide upgraded pedestrian facilities.
Neither project would have direct fiscal impact on Fairfax County or require the hiring of additional employees, county officials said. NVTA officials likely will approve projects for regional transportation funding this summer.
SUPERVISORS TO SEEK NVTC FUNDING FOR McLEAN METRO STATION ENTRANCE: Fairfax County supervisors on Jan. 28 were slated to approve a resolution authorizing county Department of Transportation Director Tom Biesiadny to seek $10.1 million from the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC) to pay for several projects, including $1 million for construction of a second entrance to the McLean Metro station.
The new entrance would be located north of Dolley Madison Boulevard (Route 123) and serve residents living along Scotts Crossing Road and people using the new facilities being built on Capital One’s adjacent campus.
“The increase in the number of residential dwelling units in the area presents an opportunity to capture commuters that would otherwise drive single-occupancy vehicles on the Dulles Connector Road and 1-66 inside the Beltway in efforts to reach Arlington and downtown D.C.,” the county’s staff report read.
The county’s resolution also authorizes Biesiadny to ask NVTC for:
• $8.6 million for multi-modal transportation improvements near the Reston South Park and Ride Lot. These would include creation of Fairfax Connector Express Route 598 that would provide bus service between the parking lot and the Pentagon, Pentagon City and Crystal City in Arlington; construction of a traffic signal and pedestrian crossings at Fox Mill and Pinecrest roads; and bicycle and pedestrian improvements in the parking lot’s vicinity that would be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act and standards set by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.
• $500,0000 to reduce the fare on Fairfax Connector Route 599, a route from Reston to Pentagon City, from the current $7.50 to $4.25 in order to boost the route’s ridership by 5 to 10 percent.
NVTC officials will rank eligible projects in May and submit them to the Commonwealth Transportation Board, which would approve them June. The projects would be financed via NVTC’s I-66 Inside the Beltway Commuter Choice Program funding for fiscal years 2021-22.
FAIRFAX TO KICK IN FUNDING FOR ROUTE 7 INITIATIVE: The Fairfax County government will toss in $140,000 in support of the next phase of a plan to develop high-quality bus service in the Route 7 corridor.
That is Fairfax’s share in covering the $560,000 cost of a “mobility analysis,” the fourth phase of the study.
Arlington County and the cities of Alexandria and Falls Church also will contribute cash to the effort, and local officials are seeking state support for half the total amount.
The study is expected to take 12 to 18 months to complete.
The Route 7 bus-rapid-transit proposal aims to connect Tysons to Alexandria by way of Falls Church, Seven Corners and Baileys Crossroads. It will touch on Arlington’s southernmost border.
The proposal is being overseen by the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission.
WAPLES MILL ROAD TO SEE CONSTRUCTION AT I-66: Drivers using Waples Mill Road over Interstate 66 can expect delays over the next six months, as Virginia Department of Transportation officials embark on construction of a new bridge.
Waples Mill at I-66 has been reduced to one lane, with a temporary traffic signal directing drivers. The speed limit has been reduced to 25 mph for the duration of construction, which began Jan. 24 and is expected to last into summer.
The existing sidewalk on the east side of the bridge is expected to remain open throughout the construction project, transportation officials said.
BOARD CHAIRMAN HAS LEADERSHIP POST ON N.VA. TRANSPORTATION COMMISSION: Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay has been tapped to serve as secretary/treasurer of the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission for 2020.
Katie Cristol, a member of the Arlington County Board, has been tapped to chair the commission. She succeeds Matt Letourneau, a member of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors.
Canek Aguirre, a member of the Alexandria City Council, was chosen to serve as vice chair.