FABB is happy to report that the Merrifield Comprehensive Plan amendment has been approved. The plan calls for a network of biking and walking trails, a bi-directional cycle track on Gallows Road, I-495 bicycle/pedestrian bridges, open space preservation, and new parks. Bicycling advocates have worked over the last 18 months with property owners and county staff to ensure the Merrifield plan included these needed bicycling and walking improvements in the Providence District.
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors also voted to amend the comprehensive plan allowing mixed used development for the Inova Center for Personalized Health (ICPH) campus on the old Exxon Mobil Headquarters site and Fairview Park across I-495.
As part of plan amendment, the Inova Center for Personalized Health agreed to:
- Provide and maintain a network of trails on their property;
- Build a separated 10-foot wide cycle track and 8-foot sidewalk on the east side of Gallows Road, north of Innovation Park Drive;
- Install a 10-foot shared use path on the west side of Gallows Road, south of IFMC Grey Entrance to Woodburn Road.
- Provide land for the bike/ped crossing over I-495 and making a $700,000 contribution towards the bridge;
- Grant public access to the trails, sidewalks, seven parks, and 55 acres of open space;
- Install bicycle racks and storage areas;
- Install marked, multi-leg pedestrian crosswalks at all signalized intersections adjoining their property; and
- Replace the existing 5-foot concrete sidewalk, east side of Gallows Road, south of Innovation Park Drive.
The amended comprehensive plan will also require the owners of Fairview Park to provide a network of trails and accommodate the construction of a I-495 bicycle and pedestrian bridge crossing north of Arlington Boulevard. The Fairview Park team provided a concept illustration showing the location of the bicycle and pedestrian crossing.
The comprehensive plan amendment details are described in pages 667 to 706 of the September 24, 2019 Board of Supervisors documents.
Since June 2018, FABB volunteers and our partners used a variety of advocacy efforts to have the much-needed bicycle and pedestrian improvements included in the comprehensive plan amendment. Thanks to Sonya Breehey and Howard Albers for testifying at the planning commission public hearing about bicycle and pedestrian safety and multimodal transportation needs.
If you are interested in learning more about advocating for your bicycle improvements or want to be involved with revisions to the 2014 bicycle master plan please send a note to [email protected].
Working together bicycling in Fairfax County will get better.