- Although only in the recommendation stage, the NPS is advocating for significant safety and other improvements to the trail.
- Local riders should continue to ask the Park Service to implement the recommendations.
FABB wanted to make sure everyone saw this excellent article by David Cranor on the National Park Service’s recommendations for widening and modernizing the Mount Vernon Trail.
The Park Service recently completed a Mount Vernon Trail study that recommends trail upgrades and changes to operations and maintenance to improve the trail’s safety and user experience. Among the recommendations are the repair of most and the replacement of some of the trail’s 38 bridges. Four of those replacements are already programmed, most notably the long boardwalk underneath the Roosevelt Bridge, the so-called Trollheim Bridge.
The study identified problems with signage and wayfinding, trail width and at-grade crossings that need to be corrected. Short term recommendations (FY2021-2023) call for signage and pavement marking improvements, hiring a trail manager; trailhead enhancements, and new trail counters. In the medium term (FY2024-2026), the study recommends reconstructing and widening much of the trail.
FABB thinks local riders should continue to ask the NPS to do more to make the Mount Vernon Trail as safe as possible with changes to the adjacent George Washington Parkway. This includes creating safe crossings by implementing proven road designs that slow driver speed and prioritize pedestrian/bicyclist safety over car speed/movement. The NPS also should try to calm driver speeds with cameras, roundabouts, and road diets in select areas.