- Support recommendations for major expansion of shared use trails along the Fairfax County and Franconia-Springfield Parkways and counter usual demands for more (and self-defeating) highway widening.
The Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) will hold two virtual public meetings on March 1 and 2 on Comprehensive Plan Amendments for the Fairfax County and Franconia-Springfield Parkways. These meetings are intended to present and reaffirm final plan amendment recommendations that were presented to the public in 2020 before being presented at a Planning Commission public hearing on March 8 and to the Board of Supervisors on March 21.
Following robust public engagement between 2018 and 2020 during which local riders offered vocal support for better bicycle infrastructure, the study’s final recommendations noted a need and desire for enhanced bicycle and pedestrian facilities. Advocates showed strong backing for enhanced bicycle/pedestrian infrastructure and opposed road widening if it occurred at the expense of existing or future bike/ped facilities. Participants in the public outreach also demonstrated support for a continuous bicycle route along the parkways.
In a summer 2020 online survey, comments submitted by cyclists advocating for safer accommodations or by those who generally drive personal vehicles advocating for the safety of cyclists supported more and wider trails on both sides of parkways with protective barriers between the trail and the vehicular travel lanes. Because bicyclists also love nature and appreciate the improved trail experience provided by a good tree canopy, many comments sought to preserve existing trees, as well as adding more canopy, along the parkways.
The study’s final recommendation adds, where feasible, 35 miles of multiuse trails on both sides of the parkways to the 5 miles of the current Comprehensive Plan and includes improvements to existing trails.
FABB is asking area riders to Speak Up in support of the study’s bicycle-related recommendations to ensure they are included in the final plans.
The first virtual meeting will be on Wednesday, March 1, at noon. You can join online by clicking here. You can participate by phone by dialing 571-429-5982 and using access code: 73993879#.
The second meeting will be on Thursday, March 2, at 6:30 pm. Participate online by clicking here or dial in at 571-429-5982 with access code: 255512570#.
You can view the Staff Report Plan Amendment Study Final Report at the study webpage at: www.fairfaxcounty.gov/transportation/study/fairfax-county-parkway.
Don’t miss this opportunity to Speak Up! for better bicycling on the Fairfax County and Franconia-Springfield Parkways.