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County Wants Residents’ Transportation Improvement Ideas

by Karen Goff — August 14, 2014 at 9:30 am 2 Comments

Transportation Improvements map/Fairfax County

Now that the Silver Line is operational, Restonians are walking more than ever. That’s why it is a good time to tell Fairfax County how to improve pedestrian safety.

The Fairfax County Department of Transportation has introduced a new interactive online tool where you can show the county where you think pedestrian safety can be improved.

Says the county: “This tool is an extension of the existing process that allows residents to email the FCDOT and request sidewalk and trail connections, curb ramps, improved signage, and other strategies for improving pedestrian safety.”

County officials said the online tool “continues FCDOT’s initiative to be more open and interactive with the public.”

Recently, citizens have requested these improvements in Reston:

  • A crosswalk at Upper Lake Drive and Sunrise Valley Drive.
  • A sidewalk on Glade Drive at bus stop near Red Maple Lane.
  • A crosswalk on Fox Mill Road at Stratton Woods Park.
  • A “Yield to Pedestrians” sign on Steeplechase Lane near Lawyers Road.

To see other suggestions or to make your own, visit the FCDOT website.

Fairfax County has allocated more than $300 million for pedestrian improvements on routes near the Silver Line. But the Silver Line opened in late July without most improvements in place, says advocacy group Reston 2020. Also, the Board of Supervisors recently approved a $100 million bond referendum. If approved by voters, most of the changes will benefit walkers and bikers.

Reston 2020 pointed out in a recent blog post that only 500 feet of sidewalk near the station has been built.

Reston 2020 pointed out the lack of pedestrian upgrades in a recent post:

… There is absolutely no excuse for this pathetic county performance. In Reston, the RMAG (Reston Metro Access Group) gave sound recommendations for improving access infrastructure in Spring 2008 — six years ago. The Silver Line has been under construction since Spring 2009, and its design specifically locked down so the county knew what to expect.

Yet here we are, the Silver Line launched nine months late and work on improving access to the station not even half done. This is a pathetic and unconscionable performance by our Board of Supervisors on transportation planning and implementation.

  • Terry Maynard

    Although I encourage all Restonians (and others in Fairfax County) to respond to this call for ideas, I am perplexed as to why this request is being put forward at this time.
    –The 2008 RMAG Metrorail access report (http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/sam_study.htm), accepted by the Board, included an extensive (maybe “comprehensive”) list of projects to improve Restonians’ ability to get to the our 3 new Metro stations. As the RestonNow article above notes, next to nothing has been done to address those needs yet.
    –In January 2014, the Board has already approved a 6-year, $1.4 BILLION capital investment plan (CIP) for County transportation investment, including a few Reston needs. Only about ONE percent of that money is intended for Reston projects, despite the arrival of Metrorail. See http://reston2020.blogspot.com/2014/01/reston-projects-high-priority-in-4.html
    –The County will be putting a $100MM bond referendum on this November’s ballot as part of the funding effort to fulfill that plan.
    So, my expectation is that any ideas Restonians and other County residents generate, if they are deemed appropriate by FC DOT, will not begin to be addressed until the next decade. (Heck, most of the major Reston projects in the current plan, including the already approved Soapstone extension across the Dulles Corridor, won’t become reality until at least the next decade.)
    That’s just a warning to those who submit ideas: Don’t expect much on-the-ground response anytime soon.

  • Debra Steppel

    The first of several times I have requested that a crosswalk across Twin Branches be added near the entrance to the Lake Audubon pool/boatramp was when I was wheeling my infant daughter’s stroller across the street to the pool in summer 2003. Eleven years later there is still no crosswalk. Will this easy change (requiring only paint, no construction!) be completed by the time she gets her driver’s license 5 years from now?

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