Fairfax County supervisors have approved using I-66 toll money for bus projects servicing Reston, one of which involves creating a new bus route.
The commuting programs will create a route from the Reston South Park and Ride to key destinations in Arlington County and reduce fares for the Fairfax Connector Route 599 from $7.50 to $4.25.
Supervisors approved the efforts during a public meeting yesterday (Tuesday), following transit officials’ approvals last year.
Like Route 599, the new service will go to the Pentagon, Pentagon City and Crystal City. It’ll involve 10 morning and 10 evening express routes for a period of two years.
The $5.1 million in funding awarded for that project mostly covers the costs of acquiring six new buses, eyed for purchase in 2023.
A county document suggested that the fare reduction could start in the fall of 2022, with $154,500 in funding lasting through Sept. 30, 2025.
The money for the projects comes through the Commuter Choice program, which seeks to improve transportation in the I-66 corridor, with the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission and Commonwealth Transportation Board deciding last year to award the money to Fairfax County for the projects.
The Northern Virginia Transportation Commission plans to fund a new express bus service, part of efforts aimed at reducing congestion connected with Interstate 66 and the Beltway.
The commission approved a plan yesterday to fund the bus service with over $5.1 million for two years. Routes would run from the Reston South Park and Ride lot to key destinations in Arlington County that include the Pentagon, Pentagon City and Crystal City.
With the new service, proposed by Fairfax County, funding would also cover buying six diesel buses to operate the 10 morning and 10 evening peak direction trips.
More environmental friendly vehicles require significant infrastructure, such as charging stations, which weren’t part of the proposal, officials said.
The commission’s approval sends the matter before the Commonwealth Transportation Board, which could vote on the matter Oct. 20.
Two other projects and $400,000 in administrative costs were included in the NVTC plan, too.
A second project involves $85,000 in funding for an effort by OmniRide to provide a $200 a month incentive payment to newly formed, eligible vanpools.
The third project calls for nearly $155,000 to subsidize and reduce fares of the Fairfax Connector express bus service between the Reston North Park and Ride and stops in Arlington County that include the Pentagon, Pentagon City and Crystal City. It would reduce fares from $7.50 to $4.25.
The three projects are part of a Commuter Choice funding program of which the NVTC approved an initial batch of projects last year. Toll revenues fund the program.
Regional transportation officials are considering more ways to improve transit along the I-66 corridor, led by a multi-million-dollar proposal to create a new express bus route from Reston to key Arlington County work sites.
The express bus is one of four projects now up for public comment as the Northern Virginia Transit Commission decides what to fund for the latest round of the agency’s I-66 Commuter Choice program, which has $7 million in available funds, according to NVTC senior manager Ben Owen.
These four projects are part of a supplemental fourth round for fiscal year 2022 after the NVTC approved an initial batch of projects last year that was limited by the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on I-66 toll revenue, which funds the Commuter Choice program.
The available money includes prior-year carryover that hasn’t been allocated, interest from the funds, and money released back to the commission from past projects that finished, NVTC communications and public affairs manager Matt Friedman said in a statement.
One of two projects proposed by Fairfax County, the new express bus service would connect Fairfax Connector’s Reston South Park and Ride lot with key employment destinations in Arlington County, including the Pentagon and Pentagon City and ending in Crystal City.
The county is seeking $5.1 million to cover two years of operating costs for the service as well as the purchase of six buses.
For its other project, the county has requested $154,000 to reduce Connector fares from $7.50 to $4.25 on the 599 express route from the Reston North Park and Ride to the Pentagon, Pentagon City, and Crystal City Metro stations in Arlington.
The other projects up for public comment come from OmniRide, which is seeking $85,000 to provide $200 per month incentives for new vanpools along I-66, and the Town of Vienna, which has applied for $5 million to design and construct a new Park and Ride lot at the soon-to-be-renovated Patrick Henry Library.
Staff presented a report on the proposed projects to the commission yesterday (Thursday). They recommended funding all of the projects except for the Patrick Henry Park and Ride.
For each round of Commuter Choice funding, NVTC staff give each of the submitted projects a technical score out of 100 that’s based primarily on their potential for reducing congestion, but also takes other factors into account.
The Town of Vienna’s proposal actually received a higher technical score of 56 than Fairfax County’s Reston North fare subsidy idea, which got a score of 44. However, staff said that the Patrick Henry Park and Ride would “exceed the available funding,” pushing the total cost of the projects to $10 million.
“The staff recommendation to fund Fairfax County’s fare buy-down proposal reflects the strong regional interest in fare reduction and equity initiatives,” NVTC staff wrote in their report. “It would also be a low-cost/costeffective means to help rebuild transit ridership in the I-66 Corridor.”
The OmniRide project received the highest score (62), followed by the Reston South express bus service (59).
Excluding the Vienna Park and Ride, the projects would move an additional 250 transit users through the I-66 corridor inside the Capital Beltway each morning when fully implemented, according to NVTC estimates.
The Commuter Choice program allows proposals to be resubmitted for future funding cycles if they’re not approved.
The public comment period runs through Sept. 17. People can participate by filling out a 12-step online form, providing feedback by email and phone, and joining in a virtual town hall this coming Wednesday (Sept. 8).
After the public comment period, NVTC will determine what it wants to fund, but the 17-member Commonwealth Transportation Board will have final approval over which projects are selected.
The commission is scheduled to approve its program on Oct. 7, followed by the CTB vote on Oct. 20.
The first day of school is always a nerve-wracking affair, but the stakes felt especially high on Monday (Aug. 23), when Fairfax County Public Schools brought back roughly 180,000 students after more than a year of mostly virtual instruction due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While the return to school unfolded relatively smoothly, students, staff, and parents raised a multitude of concerns as well, primarily around transportation and the lack of distancing and masks in cafeterias, Fairfax County School Board members said during a work session on Tuesday (Aug. 24).
The transportation challenges were largely expected, as FCPS advised families last week that a school bus driver shortage would lead to delays. In a presentation to the board, Superintendent Scott Brabrand reported that the district had filled 86.4% of its 1,121 bus driver positions as of Monday, leaving 152 vacancies.
Still, the advance warning didn’t make the delays less frustrating for students and their parents.
“[Parents] want to know how long is it going to take for their children to come in, and [there were] also lots of concerns with students who were left outside to wait for their buses, and they don’t know how long,” Mason District Representative Ricardy Anderson said. “Is it 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 45? When we have the heat we had yesterday and rain that’s going to come, because let’s be clear, this transportation issue is not going to be resolved any time soon.”
According to an FCPS spokesperson, the Langley area has been hit hardest by the shortage, though the school system was unable to provide data on exactly how many students have been affected by bus delays.
Noting that the school system has 20 “double-back” routes this year, compared to just eight last year, FCPS Assistant Superintendent of Facilities and Transportation Services Jeff Platenberg told the board that delays were reduced by 40% from Monday morning to Tuesday.
Even on Tuesday morning, however, late runs to Langley High School, Spring Hill Elementary, and Longfellow Middle School were all an hour off of their schedules.
“We know everybody is anxious about it, including us,” Platenberg said. “We’re excited about this start for the school year. We have some extreme challenges with this bus driver shortage, but we are working with our communities.”
He added that kiss-and-ride lines at schools were “jammed” on Monday and Tuesday, calling it “a healthy problem to have” since the crowds indicated that parents were heeding FCPS’ advice to drive or walk their children to school if possible.
One parent who asked to not be identified described the kiss-and-ride experience at her son’s elementary school as “absolute pandemonium,” with supervising staff seemingly scrambling to figure out where students were supposed to go.
In one case, a 4-year-old girl ended up on a shuttle to an after-school program that she doesn’t attend, leading her parents to post on social media that she was missing.
“I’m not trying to disparage the teachers who are clearly out there doing the best that they can, but from a system standpoint,” the parent said on Tuesday. “Yesterday and today were very, very hot days to just sit there for 30 minutes with no shade. What if it’s a pouring rainy day? What is your system? There has to be a better way to think through this.” Read More
Local closures are in effect today as snow continues to fall in the Reston area today.
A Winter Storm Warning is in effect through early Friday morning, with the possibility of three to six inches o of snow and one-tenth t one-quarter inch of ice is also expected.
Fairfax County government offices and courts are closed today and all employees have been given emergency leave.
The Fairfax Connector will operate a on holiday weekend service schedule. If road conditions get worse, service may be reduced further.
All Fairfax County Public Schools and central officers are also closed today. In-person and virtual learning is also canceled.
Today’s school board meeting will take place virtually at 7 p.m.
Here’s more from the Fairfax County Department of Transportation on recent changes.
Routes 231, 232, 335, 351, 393, 394, 395, 396 422, 432, 461, 494, 495, 556, 585, 599, 624, 634, 697, 698, 699, 722, 724 and 985, which will not operate.
Route 980 will run every 12-15 minutes instead of every 6-8 minutes.
Passengers are encouraged to check the status of routes online before heading to a bus stop. If a bus is on detour, the county’s BusTracker will not reflect real-time estimated arrival information.
The county has also cancelled all COVID-19 vaccine clinics administered directly the Fairfax County Health Department for today. Residents will receive an email with a re-registration link for the upcoming week.
Reston Association’s member services office is also closed for appointments today. Members can call or email RA for more information.
You know the drill: #StayHome and stay OFF the roads, friends. Ice, snow, and sleet are impacting many parts of #Virginia. Remember, it's nearly impossible to travel safely in icy conditions. Be safe! #VaWx pic.twitter.com/45FC096FKK
— Virginia Department of Emergency Management (@VDEM) February 18, 2021
Photo by Marjorie Copson
With only a week left until President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, Fairfax Connector announced that two bus routes will stop operating today (Wednesday) through Jan. 20 due to planned road closures in Washington, D.C.
Route 699, which normally travels between the Fairfax County Government Center and downtown D.C., will instead serve as a free shuttle to transport riders from the government center park and ride to the south entrance of the Vienna Metro station.
“The shuttles will leave the government center at the time on the schedule,” Fairfax Connector said in a tweet. “The shuttles will leave Vienna about 45 mins after their DC departure time with the goal of getting riders back to the P&R lot near their regularly scheduled arrival time.”
Fairfax Connector suggests Routes 631, 632, and 634 as travel alternatives for passengers on Route 697, which goes from the Stringfellow Road Park and Ride in Centreville to D Street SW in D.C. Routes 631, 632, and 634 all stop at the Stringfellow Park and Ride and the Vienna Metro station.
⚠️ Due to road closures for Inauguration, Route 697 will not operate into DC starting immediately through Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. Passengers should use shuttle between Stringfellow P&R and Vienna Metro South. Use alternative Routes 631, 632, & 634. Thanks for your patience.
— Fairfax Connector (@ffxconnector) January 13, 2021
⚠️ Due to road closures, Route 699 will not operate into DC starting immediately through Wednesday, January 20, 2021. Route 699 will shuttle passengers (free of charge) between Government Center Park & Ride and Vienna Metro South. Thanks for your patience.
— Fairfax Connector (@ffxconnector) January 13, 2021
Fears that the violence that embroiled the U.S. Capitol last week could return during the lead-up to Inauguration Day have put the D.C. region on edge, prompting thousands of National Guard troops and federal, state, and local law enforcement officers to mobilize for the National Special Security Event.
Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay joined other local and state public officials in warning community members against traveling to downtown D.C. on the day of the inauguration and the days preceding it.
“Sadly, the terror that occurred at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, was not a contained or isolated incident, and there is continued concern that similar violence is an ongoing threat to Americans and our democracy,” McKay said in a statement today.
The chairman says that the Fairfax County Police Department has been in contact with D.C. police about “the evolving situation” and has increased its presence in “key areas” of the county.
McKay advises residents to stay home if possible, avoid downtown D.C., and report any suspicious activity to police at 9-1-1 or the FCPD’s non-emergency line at 703-691-2131.
“Fairfax County will do all we can to help our partners in the region ensure a peaceful and safe transition of power on January 20, 2021 because that is the will of Fairfax County residents and the majority of Americans across the country,” McKay said.
Photo via Fairfax Connector/Facebook
Fairfax County Public Schools is getting its first electric school bus today as part of a statewide initiative led by Dominion Energy.
The bus is expected to arrive at the Stonecroft Transportation Center in Chantilly. It is the first of eight vehicles that FCPS will receive from Dominion in an initial deployment of 50 buses throughout Virginia.
FCPS says it anticipates getting the remaining seven buses by the end of January.
Made by Thomas Built Buses, the new vehicles will join Fairfax County’s fleet of approximately 1,625 diesel-fueled school buses, one of the largest in the country.
“Electric school buses in FCPS will benefit not only the school division and its community, but the entire national capital area,” FCPS says. “…They will help reduce carbon emissions, serve as a resource for national emergency planning efforts, and provide stability and capacity to the grid with meeting increasing energy demands.”
While electric buses are more expensive to purchase than diesel ones, they are cheaper to maintain and operate. FCPS is covering the difference in the initial cost with a grant from Dominion Energy, which also funded the installation of electric charging infrastructure at the Stonecroft facility and is responsible for maintaining the equipment.
FCPS says training for bus drivers, maintenance technicians, and other staff will start once the first bus arrives. The vehicles will undergo testing before being assigned to routes in early to mid-April, though whether there will be any students for them to transport at that time remains to be seen.
The arrival of Fairfax County’s first electric bus is a welcome step forward for community members and public officials who have been advocating for a transition to electric vehicles, citing health and financial benefits as well as environmental ones.
One of the most prominent advocates for electric school buses has been the Fairfax County branch of the national climate advocacy group Mothers Out Front, which launched a campaign in 2019 calling on FCPS to commit to converting its entire fleet to electric power by 2024.
“We are so excited for Fairfax to get its electric school buses on the ground and running,” Mothers Out Front Fairfax co-leader Barbara Monacella said in a statement. “…Every electric school bus we add to our fleet reduces the air pollution from diesel that harms our kids’ health, and brings us closer to our goal of converting every bus in order to reduce emissions and fight climate change.”
The community advocacy group has teamed up again with Del. Mark Keam (D-35th) on legislation that would create a state fund for school districts to purchase electric buses, a move aimed at addressing concerns about the amount of control Dominion has over the current initiative.
Last year, lawmakers opted to pursue the utility company’s pilot program instead, but Monacella says Keam will reintroduce his bill when the Virginia General Assembly convenes for its 2021 session on Wednesday (Jan. 13).
“We applaud the buses Fairfax has added, and we hope to add more through the state grant fund in the future,” Monacella said. “With every electric bus we add, we move the needle for our kids’ health and their future in the face of climate change.”
Several Reston and Herndon’s local officials came together virtually yesterday (Monday) to discuss the possibilities of what the retail industry will look like after the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Dulles Regional Chamber of Commerce hosts “Metro Monday” on the last Monday of each month. This month Herndon’s Mayor Lisa Merkel, Fairfax County’s Director of Economic Initiatives Rebecca Moudry and other local business owners were present to talk about the future of retail in Reston and Herndon.
The possibilities of the future of retail include promoting more online ordering for food, creating new digital ways for businesses to interact with its customers, and merging more restaurant and retail places together.
Merkel believes “restaurants are becoming anchors for retail centers which promotes social engagements and draws in the office crowd during lunch hours.”
Although many local businesses received grants to help with its loss of income, Moudry said the coronavirus pandemic has particularly affected the retail system.
“RISE grants have been awarded. We mailed postcards to every single business for local and federal grant programs,” Moudry said. “Economic Recovery Framework was recently launched to confront the economic shifts. That is the current task at hand.”
Job access and workforce development are essential factors in the framework. Moudry said the framework will work with the local transit system to improve both.
“The Reston bus plan will significantly improve bus transit and people’s access to jobs, as well as more opportunities for retail and people to come in and out,” Moudry said.
Tony Stafford, owner of Ford’s Fish Shack, said many businesses have had to take steps they thought they would never do.
“A lot of businesses had to reinvent themselves. We’ve seen a loss of lunch business because people aren’t going to work,” Stafford said. “This time last year, our takeout business was 7 p ercent of our overall sales, this year its 43 percent. of our overall sales. People are now comfortable ordering their meals off computer screens.”
Omar Aru, the owner of Escape Room Herndon, said setbacks posed by the pandemic have been significant, despite grants from the federal government and local assistance.
“There used to be a 15-minute wait period between each visit, but now it’s a 30-minute to an hour wait period between each visit to allow more time for proper cleaning and for rooms to air out,” Aur. said. “This means that we’re getting fewer games in and less people because we’re taking longer to clean.”
Photo courtesy of Omar Aru
Bus service between the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station and Dulles International Airport has officially resumed.
The Silver Line Express Bus provides transportation between the Dulles Terminal and the metro station. The 15-minute trip costs $5 each way and is free for children under two years of age.
Service is offered every 15 minutes during peak times and every 20 minutes during off-peak times. Free WiFi is also offering on the buses.
The schedule for the service and information on how to purchase tickets is available online.
Other transportation services have resumed or are planning to resume services, including Fairfax Connector, which will resume service next Saturday.
Fairfax Connector will resume full service on all routes beginning Aug. 29, bringing a return to a new normal after months-long disruptions in service.
The bus service — which is the largest local bus system in the state — will also feature new services, including a new commuter route from Stringfellow Road Park and Ride to Southwest DC.
Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay thanks customers for being patient with past service reductions. Throughout the pandemic, the bus service maintained roughly 70 percent of its service in order to cater to customers who depend on it for essential jobs and vital services.
“As we return to full service, the health and safety of Fairfax Connector passengers and personnel continue to be our top priority. Working together to diligently follow public health and safety guidelines will result in safer travel conditions for all,” McKay wrote in a statement.
A breakdown of new service being offered is below:
Route 699: Enhanced service on this route includes two additional morning and afternoon rush hour trips from the Fairfax County Government Center to Downtown Washington, D.C. (Foggy Bottom); adjustments to the departure times to better align with rider demand; and morning and afternoon rush hour reverse commute trips from Downtown, Washington, D.C., to the Fairfax County Government Center. This route is supported by the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC) Commuter Choice Program and I-66 toll revenues.
Route 334: Enhanced weekday service operating every 30 minutes during rush hour and every hour during non-rush hour to better serve the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) facility in Springfield by way of Springfield Center Drive and Metropolitan Center Drive, with access to the Franconia Springfield Metrorail Station, the Defense Logistics Agency, and the Army Museum.
Routes 340/341: Minor route adjustments to maintain efficiency and dependability.
Transdev, the bus system’s operations contractor, will implement improved cleaning protocols, especially on common touchpoints like door handles and handrails.
Customers must continue to enter and exit the bus through the rear doors. A face mask is still required while riding the bus.
Riders are encouraged to practice social distancing by keeping six feet apart, when and if possible.
The Fairfax County Department of Transportation has selected its preferred bus service plan for the Fairfax Connector in Reston and Herndon.
County planners say the plan “aims to improve on-time performance and streamline service to meet the needs of the community and commuters.”
Here’s more from FCDOT on what’s being considered:
Some of the key improvements to the bus service in the area include new and more direct connections and routes; new connections to Chantilly, Centreville and the Dulles Corridor; service to Northern Virginia Community College (Loudoun Campus); and routes travelling from Sterling to Herndon. The plan, which also uses elements from all three of the proposed alternatives, shortens travel time, increases access for transit dependent populations, and maintains bus stop coverage at most locations.
The implementation of the proposed service changes will coincide with the start of the new Metrorail Silver Line service and will provide connections to the Reston Town Center Station, Herndon Station, Innovation Center Station, Dulles Airport Station, Loudoun Gateway Station and Ashburn Station.
The plan will include three new routes: Chantilly to the Dulles Corridor, Northern Virginia Community College’s Loudoun campus, and Sterling too Herndon. Planners say the proposal shortens travel time and creates more direct connections.
The average travel time could be reduced from 57.3 minutes to 49.4 minutes. The updated plan would also improve service to more households, especially those that are low-income.
More information about the proposal is available online.
The county is seeking feedback via an online survey and via email at [email protected]. Residents can also call the county at 703-877-5600, extension 711, or mail comments to 4050 Legato Road, Suite 400.
The county is also hosting a virtual public meeting on the plan with Hunter Mill District Supervisor Walter Alcorn and Dranesville District Supervisor John Foust on Wednesday, July 8 from 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Staff photo by Jay Westcott
Revenues from decreased ridership are taking a hit on the Fairfax Connector as the fallout of COVID-19 outbreak continues to unfold.
The bus service is set to receive $1.85 million in funds from the Commonwealth Transportation Board, which oversees statewide transportation and transit projects, to help address the impact of the novel coronavirus, including a dip in revenue from fares. Last week, the board approved supplemental funding to help stave off the impact of service reduction, ridership losses, and decreases in revenue.
But the funding, which was OK’d by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors at a meeting yesterday (Tuesday), would only keep the buses rolling for about two months.
Fares on buses were temporarily suspended last week because fare boxes are located at the front of buses. Customers are required to enter and exit buses using the rear doors.
Here’s more from the board matter approved by the Board of Supervisors:
County staff have been responding to the onset of COVID-19, ensuring that Fairfax Connector employees are prepared, and the County’s capital assets are cleaned frequently to help reduce the potential spread of the disease. At the same time, County staff have been ensuring Fairfax Connector service continues to be available to serve Fairfax County residents who have no alternate way to travel during this emergency. The Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) is continuing to implement changes necessary to protect the health and safety of Fairfax Connector employees, customers and the public during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as requiring passengers to enter and exit the bus using the rear doors, with the exception of customers who need to use a wheelchair ramp. Fare collection on buses has been temporarily suspended due to the location of fareboxes at the front entrance of buses. The County will continue make adjustments to Fairfax Connector service to prevent and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and will ensure information on such adjustments is provided to the public.
An FCDOT spokesperson told Reston Now that although ridership had dipped, statistics on the extent of the increases are not yet available.
Fairfax Connector Suspends Fares, Begins Rear Door Boarding — The bus service has temporarily suspended fare collection and all customers must enter and exit the bus using the rear doors. Fares will be suspended because fareboxes and SmarTrip equipment is at the front entrance of buses. Service continues in order to “serve Fairfax County residents who. Have no alternate way to travel during this emergency.” [Fairfax County Government]
Stonebridge Companies Acquires Residence Inn — The Denver-based company will manage the 168-room Residence Inn by Marriott in Herndon. The hotel is located at 315 Elden Street. [Hotel Executive]
Playgrounds, Parks, and Park Authority Restrooms Now Closed — “Effectively immediately, all Fairfax County Park Authority playgrounds, skate parks and restrooms will be closed until further notice. Portable restrooms will be placed near all bathrooms. Signs will be posted at all affected locations. Park visitors are asked to adhere to all closure notices and current social distancing recommendations.” [Fairfax County Government]
Herndon-Fish Offers Emergency Financial Help — “At least for the time being, we are making no changes in our criteria for providing assistance, and our operations remain in place to make this possible. Because our efforts related to providing emergency financial assistance are done by phone and online, we can carry out these activities without endangering the health of those involved. Changes in our revenue receipts or alterations in government policy could mandate that we alter these policies in the future, but they remain in place for now.” [Herndon-Reston Fish]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
County officials are evaluating if the Fairfax Connector bus service should continue normal operations. For now, Fairfax Connector is operating on a normal schedule.
A spokesperson for the Fairfax County Department of Transportation told Reston Now that changes in service levels are possible in the future, but no plans have been finalized yet.
Overall, ridership has taken a hit, but it’s too soon to tell by how much, according to Robin Geiger, an FCDOT spokeswoman.
The Fairfax Connector’s operations contractor has implemented a more rigorous vehicle cleaning cycle with “a special focus on bus interiors and critical touchpoints such as door handles, handrails, and other surfaces,” according to FCDOT. The contractor is also working with its workforce to ensure employees are informed about coronavirus and measures to slow its spread.
Passengers should continue to practice ways to prevent spreading COVID-19 by washing hands often with soap and water, avoiding touching your eyes nose or mouth, and avoiding contact with people who are sick.
The Fairfax Health District has 14 presumptive cases of COVID-19.
How do you think the bus service should respond to COVID-19? Let us know in the poll below.
Local Fairfax County transportations officials are considering changes to Fairfax Connector routes in the Reston and Herndon area to meet demands created by the expansion of the Silver Line next year.
Of three options presented for changes, the county is recommending the “transformation” option — Other options included increment changes to the development plan or streamlining existing routes.
The recommended model would offer new service options, all day local service, and more frequent service to Metrorail Station through feeder routes at peak times. New planned connections include Sterling Plaza, Centreville and George Mason University in Fairfax.
County officials say the transformation model covers a greater area and includes the future Innovation Station. The model was also endorsed by the Multimodal Transportation Advisory Committee for recommendation to the Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT).
A recent marketing survey found the following areas had the lowest rankings:
- Available when you need it
- Fast way to travel
- Goes places you need to go
- Offers real-time information
- Fits into your lifestyle
Users sought more frequent service, operation earlier or later in the day, and express bus service. Others said they were concerned about connections to Wiehle-Reston Metro East Station and Reston Town Center.
Reston Association’s Board of Directors will vote on a preferred service alternative on Thursday (Dec. 19).
Photo via FCDOT