- Reminder! Please join in VDOT’s virtual meeting on the 495 Extension Study tonight.
- Let VDOT know that the planned shared-use path and crossings need to include appropriate safety and connection elements.
FABB’s strongly supports the 495 Northern Extension Study’s proposed bicycle and pedestrian facilities. The planned shared-used path to be built behind the noise wall along the three-mile corridor between Tysons and the American Legion Bridge should be constructed regardless of the final decision on the projected express lanes. The path’s addition would link numerous communities in the area with the developing “downtown” of the city of Tysons.
As the VDOT Bicycle Master Plan directs, “transportation agencies and local communities should go beyond minimum design standards and requirements to create safe, attractive, sustainable, accessible, and convenient bicycling and walking networks.”
It also notes that bicycle facilities are less expensive when they are integrated into larger projects at the time of initial construction as opposed to being retrofitted after a project’s completion.
FABB encourages local riders to join the virtual meeting here, and then ask for the following recommendations to be included in the plan:
- The path must be grade-separated.
- Upgraded traffic signals at the Georgetown Pike intersection should be added to account for pedestrians and cyclists using the trail crossings there.
- The trail crossings at Georgetown Pike and Old Dominion Drive need adequate signage to alert motorists (a High-Intensity Activated crossWalK beacon should be considered if the shared use path eventually generates periods of high volume use) along with adequate areas cleared of foliage and other obstacles that might limit user and motorist lines of sight.
- Segments of shared use paths on both sides of Old Georgetown Pike and Old Dominion Drive of appropriate length beyond that shown in the current plan should be included in the project to provide future connections.
- Adequate wayfinding signage should be included to get riders and pedestrians from the 495 shared-use path to Lewinsville Road and into Tysons to connect to existing and planned trails, such as the Vesper Trail to Vienna and the future Route 7 path to Reston, that start there.