Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Tysons proposed bike project meeting update

Local cyclists were well represented in a crowd of approximately three dozen attendees at the meeting last night on Fairfax County's efforts to provide dedicated bike facilities in Tysons. Fairfax County is working with VDOT to use this summer's planned repaving of deteriorated roads to re-stripe selected streets to create bike lanes, climbing lanes, and sharrows.

The county and state representatives expressed great confidence in their departments' assessments that improved safety for everyone, better traffic flow, and a more walkable and bikeable Tysons will result from the 8 proposed projects--3 road diets that will create new bike lanes in both directions, lane diets to add 3 climbings lanes, and 2 sharrows, which are listed and shown on the Fairfax County government website and in the image on the right.

The speakers stressed that these improvements were interim low to no cost solutions until the ultimate development of Tysons is completed, more biking and walking facilities are added, and the bike lanes are connected. They also emphasized that the re-striping will not change the configuration of any intersections, which they cited as one reason why traffic flow will not be affected by the new street designs. 

In response to questions from the attendees, the speakers said that signage will accompany the new bike lanes but not the sharrows, that the speed limit on West Park will be reduced from 45 to 35 mph to bring it in line with other streets in Tysons, and that the County, VDOT, and local businesses are working together to publicize the changes. A representative from TyTran, the Tysons transportation management association, confirmed that local businesses were aware of the changes and were committed to improving safety for bikers and walkers in Tysons.

The County and VDOT have completed the conceptual design and traffic analysis stages of the process and are now in the public outreach and comment period, which will last through 1 April 2015. After public comments are reviewed, plans will be reevaluated as needed with the goal of completing the design in April. Submit comments to Adam Lind of the bicycle program.

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