At its meeting Tuesday, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors gave its seal of approval to plans to widen Leesburg Pike (Route 7) from Reston to Tysons.
The Virginia Department of Transportation project will involve nearly seven miles of Route 7, between Reston Avenue and Jarrett Valley Drive, which is just before the Dulles Toll Road interchange. Supervisors approved the plan, with two minor amendments, as it was presented at a public hearing in November. (View information shared and discussed at that meeting here.)
“[This has been] a long-awaited case,” Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins said at the meeting prior to the vote.
This is the latest stage of VDOT’s work to add two lanes to the heavily traveled highway, bringing it to six overall. They also plan to add facilities for cyclists and pedestrians, and make “substantial intersection and other improvements” along the corridor. Those improvements, according to VDOT, will include constructing a partial interchange at Baron Cameron Avenue to reduce congestion.
A rendering provided by VDOT shows the Baron Cameron interchange will have the eastbound lanes of Route 7 traveling under the road, connected via ramps. Westbound lanes will continue to face a stoplight at the intersection.
According to 2011 traffic counts provided by VDOT, the stretch of Route 7 carries between 46,000 and 54,000 vehicles per day. That number is expected to increase to 73,000 to 86,000 by 2040, VDOT says.
Anticipated cost of the project is $234 million. VDOT is expected to put out its request for proposals on the project later this year. Work is planned to start in late 2020 and last until 2025.
Rendering and map courtesy Virginia Department of Transportation
Virginia Department of Transportation signage on the road indicates scheduled milling and re-paving will begin Tuesday morning. It is scheduled for 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays after that.
The good news for drivers? The work shouldn’t take long. Only a small amount of the road will be re-paved: about 500 feet on the east side of the intersection with Fairfax County Parkway and about 700 feet between Reston Parkway and Reston Avenue.
Bigger re-paving projects are planned for Reston later this season, including on Colts Neck Road, North Shore Drive, Twin Branches Road, Glade Drive and North Village Road.
A meeting is slated for June 1 to discuss the effects of widening of Route 7 from Reston to Tysons.
Michael J. Coughlin is the eminent domain, land use and zoning, and real estate lawyer for Walsh, Colucci, Lubeley and Walsh PC. He will host the meeting on the project Thursday, June 1 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Sheraton Tysons (8661 Leesburg Pike, Tysons).
The proposed Virginia Department of Transportation project will involve nearly seven miles of Route 7, between Reston Avenue and Jarrett Valley Drive, which is just before the Dulles Toll Road interchange. Coughlin is inviting residents to the meeting to “learn about the project, potential impacts to properties, what to do to prepare for the project, the eminent domain process in Virginia, and the legal rights of owners and businesses affected by the project.”
This is the latest stage of VDOT’s work to add two lanes to the heavily traveled highway, bringing it to six overall. They also plan to add facilities for cyclists and pedestrians, and make “substantial intersection and other improvements” along the corridor.
Those improvements, according to VDOT, would include:
- Constructing a partial interchange at Baron Cameron Avenue to reduce congestion
- Relocating Lewinsville Road and creating a displaced left-turn intersection
- Replacing and raising the Difficult Run bridge to reduce flooding
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is slated to vote on the project design next month. Upon approval, VDOT is expected to put out its request for proposals on the project later this year. Work is planned to start in late 2020 and last until 2025. Anticipated cost of the project is $234 million.
Photo: Intersection of Route 7 and Baron Cameron Avenue. Map via Virginia Department of Transportation.
Work to rehabilitate bridges and close joints on Reston Parkway will affect drivers this weekend and next.
The bridges over the Dulles Toll Road will have the work done Friday night through Monday morning each weekend, causing delays and detours in the area. In total, the closure schedule is:
- 10 p.m. tonight through 9 a.m. Sunday: Southbound two right lanes closed
- 8 p.m. Saturday through 3 a.m. Monday: Northbound two right lanes closed
- 10 p.m. Friday, April 28 through 9 a.m. Sunday, April 30: Southbound two left lanes closed
- 8 p.m. Saturday, April 29 through 3 a.m. Monday, May 1: Northbound two left lanes closed
While the northbound work is being done this weekend (8 p.m. Saturday through 3 a.m. Monday), traffic traveling in that direction will not be able to make the left turn onto the westbound Dulles Toll Road. Those cars will be detoured via Sunset Hills Road and Wiehle Avenue.
The work will include bridge deck resurfacing, repair of deteriorated concrete on abutments and piers, repaving of the roadway leading up to the bridges, and joint closures. In addition, the southbound bridge will receive repairs to the concrete barrier that separates the road from a shared-use path.
All work is weather-permitting, the Virginia Department of Transportation says.
According to VDOT, the northbound bridge was built in 1959, and the southbound bridge was constructed in 1976. Both were widened in 1989, with the northbound bridge’s deck also replaced at that time.
As part of the overall project, the Monroe Street/Van Buren Street bridges and the Herndon-Monroe Park and Ride ramp bridge are also scheduled to have work done at a later date. All work is expected to be completed by summer, VDOT says.
The Fairfax County Police Department reports that Georgetown Pike (Route 193) is closed just west of Great Falls due to an overturned dump truck.
Road closure: Reston, Great Falls area, Georgetown Pike at Ellsworth Ct and Georgetown Pike at Applewood Ln. 2 hour closure. pic.twitter.com/gFmBtWgT9y
— Fairfax Co. Police (@fairfaxpolice) April 12, 2017
— Charlie Bragale (@charlienbc) April 12, 2017
NBC Washington reports the collision involved the dump truck and a car, but the drivers of each suffered only minor injuries.
The closure is expected to last into the mid-afternoon.
Map via Google
According to information provided within the board’s April 4 meeting package, the hump will be located adjacent to 2320 Colts Brook Drive. A Reston Association pathway between the Colts Brook Recreation Area and the Tournament Recreation Area crosses Colts Brook Drive just south of where the hump will be installed.
Information provided to the Board of Supervisors indicates that there is community support for the traffic-calming measure. The Fairfax County Department of Transportation has been instructed to do the work “as soon as possible,” with a budget of $7,000.
The project is part of the county’s Residential Traffic Administration Program. Also through the program, the board in 2015 approved additional speeding fines on Thunder Chase Drive in the same neighborhood. On the other side of Fairfax County Parkway, they did the same on Rosedown Drive in 2016.
Map via Reston Association
(Updated at 2:30 p.m. after Lawyers Road was reported to be reopened.)
Lawyers Road between Hunter Mill Road and Galloping Way was blocked off for several hours Friday as steady rain pounded the area.
According to an alert from Fairfax County, that area was being monitored by county crews as water levels continued to increase. The road was closed from about 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
At the Hunter Mill Road/Lawyers Road intersection, barriers were placed blocking eastbound turns onto Lawyers Road.
In addition, Fox Mill Road was closed in Herndon at Thoroughbred Road because of high water.
A flood warning is in effect for the central portion of Fairfax County, including the City of Fairfax, until 5:15 p.m. Friday.
According to VDOT’s website, more than 1,300 miles of roads will be repaved in Fairfax, Prince William, Loudoun and Arlington counties during the 2017 paving season. Among the scheduled projects are the following locations in Reston:
- the entire length of North Shore Drive (3.53 miles)
- the entire length of Colts Neck Road (1.82 miles), excluding the intersection with Glade Drive
- 1.93 miles of Glade Drive, from Glade Bank Way to Twin Branches Road
- 2.21 miles of Stuart Mill Road, from Fox Mill Road to Birdfoot Lane
- 1.07 miles of North Village Road, from Baron Cameron Avenue to Hollow Timber Way
- the entire length of Twin Branches Road (.85 miles)
- the entire length of Triple Crown Road (.43 miles)
- .13 miles of Wiehle Avenue, from Reston Parkway to Reston Avenue
In addition, the Fairfax County Department of Transportation has plans to make alterations to lane patterns and bike lanes on North Shore Drive, Colts Neck Road and Twin Branches Road as part of the repaving process. A community meeting on this issue is scheduled for March 16.
VDOT’s website shows the only repaving work completed in Reston in 2016 was along a stretch of Baron Cameron Avenue, from Leesburg Pike (Route 7) to near Browns Chapel Road.
Other roads in the area on the 2017 schedule include portions of Centreville Road, Frying Pan Road and McLearen Road in Herndon; and Lee Jackson Memorial Highway (U.S. Route 50) at the Fairfax County Parkway interchange.
VDOT says repaving work is “usually limited to outside of rush hours,” with work in residential areas typically scheduled from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays.
Check VDOT’s interactive map for more.
Map via VDOT
The National Weather Service said today the area could see some lightly accumulating snow between 10 p.m. tonight and 2 a.m. tomorrow morning.
In anticipation of the possible snowflakes, The Virginia Department of Transportation says it’s preparing area roads for wintry weather tonight through the weekend.
From a VDOT press release:
Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) officials will hold a public meeting Thursday to show its place for a proposed design for the widening of Elden Street between Monroe Street and the Fairfax County Parkway in Herndon.
Officials hope the project will reduce traffic congestion, improve safety and enhance access to and from the busy Fairfax County Parkway.
Planned improvements include widening East Elden Street (Route 606) from four lanes to six between Herndon Parkway and Fairfax County Parkway, as well as improving access management from Van Buren Street to Herndon Parkway.
Other planned improvements include a new raised median with streetscaping between Van Buren Street and Herndon Parkway, moving utilities between Monroe Street and Fairfax County Parkway underground, and replacing the culvert over Sugarland Run with a new bridge.
The proposed design also features accommodations for cyclists and pedestrians, including enhanced facilities like on-street bike lanes between Monroe Street and Herndon Parkway, and off-street bike lanes from east of Herndon Parkway to Fairfax County Parkway.
VDOT officials say they hope to have plans approved by the spring, though it could take a few years to receive authorization for right-of-way funding, and to advertise to potential construction companies for the job. All in all, construction could begin in the spring of 2022.
The total costs of the project, including preliminary engineering, right-of-way and construction, add up to just under $35 million.
Thursday’s meeting will take place at the Herndon Senior Center, located at 873 Grace St. The public is invited to drop by to view the plans and talk with officials anytime between 6:30 to 8 p.m.
Comments can also be sent to VDOT directly anytime before Nov. 28. by e-mailing [email protected] or by sending mail to Mr. Hamid Misaghian, P.E., Project Manager, Virginia Department of Transportation, 4975 Alliance Drive, Fairfax, VA, 22030.
View the East Elden Street Widening project page online for more information.
Image: VDOT/Google Maps
A car crash investigation has closed all lanes of the Fairfax County Parkway near New Dominion Parkway as of 9:15 a.m. Tuesday.
Fairfax County Fire Rescue and Fairfax County Police are both at the scene.
Additionally, there is a crash being removed from Reston Parkway and Fox Mill Road as of 9:35 a.m. so steer clear of that area as well.
Reston Now will have more details as they are available.
After a car crash with injuries on Wiehle Avenue earlier this week, many Reston Now readers chimed in that “something needs to be done” about the stretch of Wiehle from Baron Cameron Avenue to Sunset Hills Road.
The road is on a hill in that section and features a slight blind curve. Monday’s crash occurred at Wiehle and Inlet Court. That intersection was the site of nine crashes in 2015, according to Fairfax County Police. It was the second crash at the intersection in 2016.
A pedestrian was hit and killed by a driver at Wiehle and Chestnut Grove last October, one of three car-vs.-pedestrian incidents in 2015, records show. The woman killed in that crash was crossing Wiehle at dawn outside of a crosswalk.
FCPD points to several intersections as trouble spots on Wiehle. Since the start of 2015, there have been 20 collisions at Wiehle and North Shore Drive. The busy intersection at Baron Cameron has had 17 crashes in that time frame.
There have been 12 crashes at the intersection at Sunset Hills since the start of 2015, FCPD records show. That area continues to be a trouble spot, with the W&OD Trail also crossing Wiehle there. Access to the Silver Line station at Wiehle-Reston East and egress from Fairfax County Fire Rescue Station 25 also complicate things at that intersection.
The Fairfax County Department of Transportation plans a pedestrian bridge to take the W&OD over Wiehle. The $10 million bridge likely won’t be built until 2021, however.
Meanwhile, while it seems Wiehle is an increasingly dangerous road, FCPD spokesman Officer Don Gotthardt points out that incidents are actually down in 2016.
There were 53 collisions on Wiehle in 2015. With a little over three months left to go in 2016, there have been 25 recorded by police. Gotthardt said the reasons for the decline were unknown.
Overall, there have been 78 collisions recorded since the start of 2015, though, which does it make Wiehle a trouble spot. What do you think should be done to make it safer? Tell us in the comments below.
Also, check out the document from Fairfax County Police mapping and categorizing what has happened on Wiehle in the last 20 months.
The flurry of construction you see in the median of the Dulles Toll Road near Reston Parkway isn’t all the Reston Town Center Metro Station.
Designers of the Silver Line’s Phase 2 are planning way ahead — perhaps decades from now — when a possible new road will take vehicle traffic under rather than over the toll road.
Crews have started construction of a so-called “land bridge structure” in the median. The bridge will enable the future connecter — a four-lane highway linking Town Center Parkway to Sunrise Valley Drive — to be built without disrupting the toll road, said Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project spokeswoman Marcia McAllister.
The structure is being built in the median of the toll road near mile marker 4.8, approximately 500 feet west of the future Reston Town Center Station. That station is slated to open in early 2020.
The bridge was requested by Fairfax County as an element of the Board of Supervisors’ Six Year Transportation Priorities for FY2015 to FY2020. The county pledged $8.7 million for the $157 million underpass project in late 2014.
Building the bridge-like structure in advance would minimize any impact to Silver Line Phase 2 service during future construction of the planned roadway, McAllister said.
Graphic: Rendering of land bridge on Dulles Toll Road/Credit: Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project
This week (Sept. 19-23) is Try Transit Week in Virginia, and Fairfax County is hoping citizens get involved and get commuting by methods other than four wheels.
The county is even offering prizes for the most enthusiastic public transportation users. The county is holding a social media contest. If you take transit and post about it this week, you could win a $50 SmarTrip card or other prizes.
Here is what to do:
When you do that and mention them in a post, you will be automatically entered into the contest. Prizes include daily winners of a $50 SmarTrip card and a Grand Prize winner who will receive two (2) $50 SmarTrip cards.
Visit this Fairfax County page for more details on what to post and how to tag.
Try Transit Week includes Car Free Day on Thursday.
Car Free Day is a free international event celebrated every September 22 in which people are encouraged to get around without driving alone in cars and instead ride a train, bus, bicycle, carpool, vanpool, subway, or walk. For those that have the ability to work from home, telework also counts. Car Free Day is open to all people in the Washington metropolitan area.
If you are going Car Free, fill out the pledge form, then go car free or go car-lite on Thursday. Once you pledge, you’re automatically entered for a chance to win prizes, such one-year membershiop to Crunch Fitness, an annual Capital Bikeshare membership, and more.
Additionally, there is a Live More block party at Reston Town Center Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Reps will be on hand for you to “discover how to live more by making a better commuting choice.” There will also be refreshments, exhibits and family friendly activities.
How to ease traffic on Hunter Mill Road, a two-lane country road in the increasingly urban Reston-Vienna area, will be the subject of a community meeting this week.
The Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) meeting (Thursday, Sept. 15 at 7 p.m., at Aldrin Elementary School, 11375 Center Harbor Rd. in Reston), is actually the fifth on this topic since 2014.
FCDOT officials will talk about the project status and next steps.
At the most recent meeting in late June, transportation officials showed results of a new traffic impact study that showed installing roundabouts could result in fewer traffic backups.
Project manager Kristin Calkins said then that the project is still years away as the county continues to look at models and obtain citizen feedback. There also is no money set aside for the roundabouts as county transportation projects are planned and funded through 2020.
In any case, FCDOT is looking at what roundabouts would do at Sunrise Valley Drive and Hunter Mill Road, on Dulles Toll Road eastbound and westbound exit ramps at Hunter Mill, and at Sunset Hills Road and Crowell Drive, which would also be realigned to connect and further smooth traffic on Hunter Mill.
Some of those intersections/road areas are currently at an unacceptable level of service, said Calkins. Roundabouts would bring them up to an acceptable level when the county looks at the increased volume expected to be on the roads in 2030.
In addition to the roundabouts, the county would like to upgrade the area on Hunter Mill from Sunrise Valley Drive to Route 7 that is served by a one-lane bridge.
“It’s been found to be structurally deficient and functionally obsolete,” said Calkins. “Hunter Mill Road carries 7,900 vehicles a day. That warrants a two-lane bridge.”
Calkins said an acceptable amount of traffic for a road with a one-lane bridge is 400 cars per day.
Graphic: Proposed roundabouts on Hunter Mill Road/Credit: FCDOT