Thursday, August 17, 2017

Route 1 Bicycle Route Upgraded

FABB member Kelley Westenhoff reports that on 1 August there was a ribbon cutting ceremony near Ft. Belvoir celebrating the completion of the Route 1 Expansion, a 3.6-mile-long road improvement project between Jeff Todd Way and Telegraph Road.  As part of the expansion, the Rt. 1 Bicycle Route was upgraded significantly.

Kelley and FABB member Rick Landers joined Fairfax County Bike Coordinator Adam Lind and other local cyclists for a short but hilly bike ride to explore and enjoy some of the infrastructure before the ribbon cutting ceremony. 

The new facilities include a bike lane for both directions on Rt. 1 as well as a 10-foot multiuse path that runs parallel to Rt. 1 on the west side. The multiuse path runs all the way to Lorton Road where it connects to bike facilities there.

This is an exciting development because this new infrastructure makes it possible to ride from the  Ft. Belvoir area to northern Fairfax County using bike facilities the entire way. By turning east on Rt. 235 cyclists can bike to Mount Vernon and then connect with the Mount Vernon Trail. From there it is simple to connect to the Martha Custis Trail at Rosslyn and then with the W&OD near Falls Church to travel on to the Reston-Herndon-Sterling areas. 

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VA Legislators Support Improved I-66 Parallel Trail

Several VA legislators recently sent a letter to Aubrey Laine, the Virginia Secretary of Transportation, to express their concerns about the design of the I-66 parallel trail. The trail will be included as part of the widening of I-66 outside the Beltway. Senator Scott Surovell spearheaded this effort, working with FABB and other advocacy groups. Thank you Senator Surovell and thanks to your Senate and House colleagues! Please consider sending a thank you note to these officials.

The Washington Post reported on the letter and the response from VDOT in the online article Virginia lawmakers oppose plan to sandwich I-66 trail between a sound wall and traffic. The article includes a link to an edited version of the simulation video produced by FABB. The original version is below.

From the Post article:
Some Virginia lawmakers, like their constituents, are unhappy with plans that put a bike and pedestrian trail alongside traffic lanes on busy Interstate 66.

The Virginia Department of Transportation proposal squeezes the walking path between the highway and the concrete wall that serves as a buffer between traffic noise and adjacent neighborhoods. A jersey barrier and fence would separate trail users and traffic.

“We believe this is an insufficient design,” says a letter addressed to transportation secretary Aubrey Layne and signed by 18 members of the Virginia General Assembly. “I-66 Trail users will be closely sandwiched between a sound wall and traffic exposing them to concentrated quantities of car exhaust, noise pollution and road debris.”
The letter concludes by asking Secretary Laine to "Please redesign this project to place the shared use path on the outside of the sound walls, ten- feet-wide with two-foot-shoulders on either side, or 14-feet-wide, and extend the shared use path the entire length of the widening project."

Here is VDOT's response in the Post article.
Susan Shaw, director of Mega Projects for VDOT said the department is working with the project’s private partners to find other locations within those five miles of trail where the facility could be moved to the other side of the wall. A modified design would be released for public review this fall, she said.
At last night's FABB meeting Adam Lind, the county bike coordinator, noted that FCDOT, VDOT, and the contractor are working together to find places where the trail can be placed outside the sound walls.

Organizations that supported the letter and legislators who signed on:

(1) The Virginia League of Conservation Voters;
(2) The Virginia Sierra Club;
(3) The Southern Environmental Law Center;
(4) The Virginia Bicycling Federation;
(5) The Virginia Cycling Association;
(6) The Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA);
(7) The Coalition for Smarter Growth;
(8) The Rails-to-Trails Conservancy;
(9) Mid Atlantic Bicycle Racing Association (MABRA)
(10) The Fairfax Alliance for Better Biking;
(11) Active Prince William;
(12) The Sierra Club – Mt. Vernon Chapter;
(13) The Alexandria Bike & Pedestrian Advisory Committee;

Senator Scott A. Surovell, 36th District, Fairfax, Prince William, & Stafford Counties
Senator Jeremy McPike, 29th District,Manassas, Manassas Park, & Prince William County
Senator Barbara Favola, 31st District, Arlington, Fairfax, & Loudoun Counties
Senator Janet D. Howell, 32nd District, Arlington & Fairfax Counties
Senator Jennifer T. Wexton, 33rd District, Fairfax & Loudoun Counties
Senator David F. Marsden, 37th District, Fairfax County
Delegate Ronald A. Villanueva, 21st District, Chesapeake & Virginia Beach
Delegate Richard C. Sullivan, Jr. 48th District, Arlington & Fairfax Counties
Delegate J. Randall Minchew, 10th District, Clark, Frederick, & Loudoun Counties
Delegate Sam Rasoul, 11th District, Roanoke
Delegate Kenneth T. Plum, 36th District, Fairfax County
Delegate Kaye Kory, 38th District,Fairfax County
Delegate Vivian E. Watts, 39th District, Fairfax County
Delegate Mark H. Levine, 45th District, Alexandria, Arlington & Fairfax Counties
Delegate Charniele L. Herring, 46th District, Alexandria
Delegate Patrick A. Hope, 47th District, Arlington County
Delegate James M. LeMunyon, 67th District, Fairfax & Loudoun Counties
Delegate Jennifer M. Boysko, 86th District, Fairfax & Loudoun Counties

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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Faces of Fairfax: Krishtam Chin

Krishtam Chin
Herndon resident Krishtam Chin stopped by the Tysons pit stop on Bike to Work Day and helpfully answered FABB’s brief survey questions.

FABB: Why do you ride? 

Krishtam: I ride for the exercise and the sheer pleasure of being on my bike. I’ve just started this year trying to commute to work at least one day each week. 

FABB: That's great! Where do you ride? 

Krishtam:  I mostly ride on the Washington and Old Dominion Trail. For commuting, I ride from Herndon on the W&OD and then use bike lanes and side streets to get to my job in Tysons.

FABB: What do you most like about riding? 

Krishtam: I love the fresh air.

FABB: What would you like to change to make it easier and safer for you to ride? 

Krishtam: I would like to see more bike lanes and more connected networks of bike lanes. 

Businesses in Tysons, such as Tysons Corner Center, are devoting more attention to making the area a more bike-friendly destination for employees and customers.  FABB is working with the Tysons Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Tysons Partnership  to help insure that the needs of cyclists (and the benefits of serving the bicycling community) are taken into consideration as Tysons continues its quest to become America’s next great city. FABB applauds initiatives, such as Access Tysons, that seek to improve multimodal transportation options to reduce congestion in the area.  

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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

FABB Meeting tomorrow: Providence & Mason Districts

Please join us tomorrow to discuss bicycling in the Mason and Providence Districts. Meet-up with other local bicyclists at FABB's meeting in Annandale. We'll hear about plans for an Arlington Boulevard Trail and get an update on bike improvements happening in your area of the county. FABB also wants to hear from you about ways to improve bicycling for you in your community. Hope you can make it!

August 16, 2017 at 7:30 pm
Mason District Governmental Center
6507 Columbia Pike, Annandale
  • Learn about the Arlington Boulevard Trail, a proposed trail connecting Washington D.C. to the City of Fairfax. See the Arlington Boulevard Trail Concept Plan.
  • Hear from Fairfax County Dept. of Transportation’s Adam Lind about local bike improvements in the Mason and Providence Districts.
  • Share your concerns and suggestions for improving bicycling in your community.
  • Find out about upcoming events and other bicycle activities.
Hope to see you tomorrow night!

Sonya Breehey
VP, Board of Directors

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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Faces of Fairfax: Kathleen Kelley

Kathleen Kelley
Kathleen Kelley of Falls Church spoke to us at the Tysons pit stop on Bike to Work Day, telling us that she commutes daily from her home to Tysons.  She said that she rides because it is way more fun than driving.  In addition to her daily commute, she has a few favorite routes she rides to Shirlington and around the Harper’s Ferry area.  

Kathleen told us that one of the things she likes most about bicycling is the friends she has made over a common love of biking. 

Kathleen would like to see better transportation planning to correct car-centric networks such as is found in and around Tysons. The good news is that a number of projects are underway in the Tysons area that address Kathleen’s concerns.  For example, shared use paths on both sides of Route 7 from Tysons to Reston Avenue are included in the Route 7 widening design. And grade separated ramp crossings for the Route 7 bridge over the Dulles Toll Road are under construction. The 14-foot-wide shared-use path being built for pedestrians and bikes as part of this project will tie into future trails.

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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

New Bike Lanes in Reston

New North Shore Dr Bike Lane in Reston
VDOT is finishing the repaving of North Shore Drive in Reston. New bike lanes are included in the project. In most sections a bike lane is located on one side of the road and Shared Lane Markings or Sharrows are located on the other side. See the map of proposed options.

Other repaving projects in Reston still to be completed this summer are Twin Branches Road, Glade Drive, and Colts Neck Road, all located south of the Dulles Toll Road. See the Hunter Mill repaving projects page for details.

These new bike lane projects are well-timed as the county is proposing to add bikeshare stations south of the Toll Road (map of proposed stations). Currently all bikeshare stations are located north of the Toll Road. You can provide feedback on future station locations.

Sharrow on North Shore Drive.
Bike lane on opposite side.

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Friday, August 4, 2017

Fairfax County DOT Installing New Bike Racks

Fairfax County DOT recently installed bike racks at several county-owned locations. The racks are simple, functional inverted U (or Hoop) racks. These racks allow two contact points on the bike and the use of a variety of bike locks. See the county Bicycle Parking Guidelines for more info. Thanks to FCDOT for the following photos.

Gum S[rings Community Center
Patrick Henry Library in Vienna
Huntington Community Center
Sherwood Regional Library
Racks were also installed at several bus stops along Little River Turnpike in Annandale.

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Thursday, August 3, 2017

Workhouse Brewfest on Saturday, August 12

We're just over a week away from the Workhouse Brewfest in Lorton on Saturday, August 12. Have you used the $5 discount code: BIKE to buy your tickets yet? If not, there's still time, so please plan on attending this bike-friendly event. Check out the Brewfest website for details on and to purchase tickets

The Workhouse Brewfest runs from 1 pm to 8 pm and will feature food, live music, craft brews from Northern Virginia and throughout the Commonwealth, and more. More than a dozen bands and performers will be on the two main stages. Plus there will be a number of workshops, demonstrations, and other fun how-to’s related to beer!

See you there!

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Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Faces of Fairfax: Maureen Roche

Maureen Roche
Burke resident Maureen Roche told FABB that she loves to ride. She finds that getting out on her bike just makes her feel better.  Maureen also told us that she likes to ride because of the freedom it gives her and because she regularly meets new people while out on her bike. 

In response to our question about where she rides, Maureen told us that she usually rides on the W&OD Trail and along Rt. 123 for trips to Occoquan.  

Before heading off to finish her ride, Maureen mentioned that she also values biking because when she and others ride it helps reduce local traffic congestion by taking at least a few cars off the road. 

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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Feedback Needed on Bikeshare Expansion in Reston

Fairfax County is expanding bikeshare in Reston south of the Dulles Toll Road. All existing stations are located north of the Toll Road. See the map below for proposed locations. Click on image for a larger pdf version. Most (all?) of the proposed locations in the north part of the image are already in place. FCDOT will be doing outreach during August to get feedback on the proposed locations. From Fairfax County:

New Stations Planned for Reston - Feedback Sought on Proposed Locations

(Updated Aug. 1, 2017) Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) is seeking public input on the location of 10 new bikeshare stations in Reston. The goal of Phase II is to expand Capital Bikeshare to south Reston and increase the number of destinations within the system, while also taking advantage of new bike infrastructure in 2017 to make riding safer and more enjoyable for all.

FCDOT will conduct three public outreach events in Reston to gather community input on future Bikeshare stations:
  • Thursday, Aug. 10, Lake Audubon Pool, 2070 Twin Branches Road, 1-5 p.m.
  • Thursday, Aug. 17, Glade Pool, 11550 Glade Drive, 1-5 p.m.
  • Saturday, Aug. 26, Reston Farmer’s Market, Lake Anne Village Center, 1603 Washington Plaza North, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Since Phase II is federally funded, all stations must be located in the public right of way. FCDOT plans to replace some of the existing Phase I stations that were locally funded with federally funded stations, and then relocate those Phase I stations to south Reston where public right of way is not available. While FCDOT has identified several additional locations for bikeshare stations, these proposed stations represent those that meet the criteria of existing available public right of way. The Phase II map (click image to expand) also incorporates input received over the past year since Bikeshare launched in October 2016.

To submit feedback on proposed stations, use the comment form on this page, email or call the FCDOT Bicycle Team at 730-877-5600, TTY711.

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