Vienna Town Council members on Nov. 4 unanimously approved applications for Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA) grants that would provide funding for bikeshare stations and the town’s share of a proposed parking garage at Patrick Henry Library.
The latter proposal is far larger, clocking in at $5.7 million. The town is coordinating with Fairfax County about jointly building a municipal parking garage at the library, which now offers only surface parking.
The amount requested would cover the town’s share of a three-story garage with 188 public parking spaces and 125 for the library. Vienna leaders also could opt to pursue a smaller, two-story garage, said Town Manager Mercury Payton.
NVTA distributes Northern Virginia transportation-tax revenues for projects that aim to relieve traffic congestion and/or increase road capacity. The library is located within 300 feet of four Fairfax Connector bus stops and within 500 feet of the Washington & Old Dominion (W&OD) Regional Trail, which has become a commuting highway for bikers.
To encourage mass-transit use, Vienna officials are considering assigning commuter-only spaces in the garage’s public section between 6 a.m. and noon on weekdays, said Public Works Director Michael Gallagher.
The town is not considering charging for parking at the garage and county officials said they have no plans to do so, either, for the library’s parking spaces, said Vienna Finance Director Marion Serfass.
Town officials also are working with Fairfax County regarding the possible on installing and operating an extension of the Capital Bikeshare program, which would link up with a planned extension at the Vienna Metro station. Vienna will seek $232,400 from NVTA for the project, which will cover $48,400 for construction and $184,000 for asset acquisition.
About 72 people arrive at the Metro station via bicycle on weekday mornings (roughly 1 percent of the station’s ridership) and town officials hope implementing the bikeshare extension will double that tally.
Town officials are considering four bikeshare stations, including ones along the W&OD Trail at the Vienna Town Green and the Vienna Community Center.