Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Comments on Route 7 widening project

In an earlier blog post we mentioned that VDOT is planning to widen Route 7 to 3 lanes in each direction from Reston Avenue to the Dulles Toll Road at Tysons. Wide sidepaths are planned on each side of the road. The last day for making comments on the project is Saturday, Dec. 8. Comments should be sent to with the subject heading "Route 7 Widening - Reston Avenue to Jarrett Valley Drive." We submitted the following comments today:
Thank you for this opportunity to comment on the Route 7 Widening project from Reston Ave. to Jarrett Valley Dr. I have the following comments:
  1. Public transit should be an integral part of the widening project, preferably on dedicated right of way. That right of way could be shared with bicyclists.
  2. We strongly support the inclusion of multi-use sidepats on both sides of Route 7. These sidepaths should have the same or similar elevation profile as the roadway and be as straight as possible. If not, the route could be hilly and divergent from the roadway and would not be an efficient way for bicyclists to travel along the corridor. 
  3. Intersections of the sidepaths and the roads should be designed for maximum bicycle and pedestrian safety. Curb radii should not be so wide as to allow motorists to exit without yielding to pedestrians. Pedestrian-activiated signals should use the "rest in walk" concept which allows a longer crossing signal for pedestrians and bicyclists and does not require bicyclists to stop to activate the signal. Motorists are not required to get out of their cars to push a button to cross intersections, and trail users should not have to do the same, especially along the mainline of Route 7. 
  4. There should be close coordination with the VDOT project to replace the Route 7 bridge over the Toll road that is located just east of this project. The trail through the Toll Road intersection should be grade-separated, and the transition between the two projects needs to be planned carefully.
Thank you,

Bruce Wright

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