Plan now to join in a VDOT virtual public information meeting on Wednesday, September 29, at 6:30 pm for a 495 NEXT Project update. This project involves the proposed northern extension of express lanes on I-495 between Tysons and the American Legion Bridge. The plan includes a shared-use trail that FABB supports with the recommendation that the proposed trail be built behind the noise wall along the three-mile corridor.
Following more than three years of environmental study and traffic analysis, the project is advancing to the design and construction phase. It recently received a “Finding of No Significant Impact” from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and National Park Service on its environmental assessment along with an approval from FHWA on its interchange justification report.
The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) will have representatives at the meeting to provide information on its New American Legion Bridge I-270 to I-70 Traffic Relief Plan, which includes proposed improvements in Virginia near the George Washington Memorial Parkway and across the American Legion Bridge into Maryland. VDOT will update the ongoing collaboration and coordination between Virginia and Maryland project teams to improve travel and bring multimodal transit solutions to I-495 and the Capital Beltway area.
This meeting is intended to address many of the questions raised by opponents about the balance between its likely benefits and its negative impact on other transportation options and environmental and health issues. Even though the larger project remains controversial, FABB encourages bicyclists and others to Speak Up at the meeting in support of the planned parallel trail.
Regardless of the final decision on the projected express lanes, FABB believes that VDOT and Fairfax County should construct this parallel trail and include other improvements to the plan we have previously recommended. The planned trail alone will promote pedestrian and bicycle connections in and around Tysons. If built, the trail will help spur the county to take action to assure pedestrian and bike facilities along secondary streets throughout the project corridor.
Please Speak Up for the trail at this meeting.
You can join using this link:
You also can call in by dialing 1-866-692-4530 (toll free) and entering meeting code: 1613318294##.