Monday, February 22, 2016

Mt. Vernon Residents Hungry for More Bicycle Infrastructure

More than 30 Mt. Vernon area cyclists and other interested citizens turned out for FABB’s February meeting, our first to be held in the Mt. Vernon District.  A presentation by Adam Lind, Fairfax County’s Bicycle Program Manager, on the implementation of the county’s Bicycle Master Plan in the district flowed quickly into a valuable discussion on various bicycling related projects and issues that need county government and VDOT attention. 

Brett Kenney of Mt. Vernon District Supervisor Dan Storck's office spoke to the group about the Supervisor's support for bike lanes and focus on transportation issues. He mentioned that there would be an opportunity for the community to support bike projects on February 27th at the 29th Annual Mt. Vernon town meeting with Supervisor Storck, County Executive Edward Long, and Fairfax Co Board of Supervisors Chairman Sharon Bulova. 

Full house at Mt. Vernon FABB meeting. 

FABB looks forward to working with area residents and other interested groups in advocating for a wide range of issues raised during the meeting. Among the largest and highest priority are: 
  • Huntington Avenue (between Rt. 1 and Telegraph Rd.): Needs new infrastructure, such as a protected bike lane, a road diet, and sidewalks, to provide better bicycling and pedestrian access to the Metro station there.  
  • Sherwood Hall Lane: Needs improved connections between bike lanes on Sherwood Hall Lane across Ft. Hunt Road and along Morningside Lane to Mt. Vernon Trail along with a pedestrian crossing for a Metro Bus Stop near the intersection at Ft. Hunt/Sherwood Hall Lane/Morningside. 
  • Mount Vernon Trail: National Park Service, in response to local requests, is considering arranging for snow plowing during the winter.
  • Mt. Vernon Highway: Needs numerous improvements, such as marked bicycling crossings and pedestrian crosswalks.

Mt. Vernon Trail, photo courtesy of National Park Service.

FABB intends to continue working with Fairfax County and VDOT on existing plans for the southern part of the county. 
  • Potomac Heritage Trail: Trail extension to Route 1 is under way with a planned bridge scheduled to be built over Dogue Creek.
  • EMBARK Project (Richmond Highway/Rt. 1): Plans are being developed to include bicycle and pedestrian facilities to complement the planned widening of Rt. 1 to a consistent six lanes, construction of a median Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, and, later, a two-stop underground extension of Metro’s Yellow Line to Beacon Hill and Hybla Valley.
Mike Barth and other members of Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts (MORE) spoke to the meeting to seek additional citizen support for the group’s work with the Fairfax County Park Authority on a project in the Mt. Vernon District Park to provide better and safer natural surface trails there. Another part of the project addresses a major stormwater outfall problem that is a safety hazard and threatens Dyke Marsh.  

FABB appreciates the participation of all of the attendees, including local representatives of the Mt. Vernon Council of Citizens Associations, Fairfax County Trails and Sidewalks Committee, and the Fairfax County Tree Council. In addition to the projects above, the group raised worthwhile ideas about advocating for the enforcement of parking restrictions in bike lanes, multilingual outreach to area bike commuters, improved traffic light sensors, and making roads and trails safer with additional and well designed tree plantings. 

This meeting was part of FABB's effort to better serve and represent cyclists and other supporters throughout the county. During 2016 FABB plans to hold monthly meetings in all of the county’s districts and will be in the Mason District in March. If you would like to assist in setting up the program for the meeting in your district, please contact Steve Ward at

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