Earlier this month, Virginia’s Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT) released the Springfield to Quantico Enhanced Public Transportation Feasibility Study Executive Summary for public comment. The deadline for comments is 17 November, and FABB encourages riders in the Franconia, Springfield, and Lorton areas to Speak Up in support of including bike infrastructure (lanes, paths, parking, bike share, etc.) in the proposed enhanced public transportation services.
The General Assembly in 2020 directed the DRPT to conduct the study for enhanced services between the Franconia-Springfield Metro and Lorton, Potomac Mills, and Marine Corps Base Quantico. The study includes the cost and feasibility of extending the Blue Line and other multimodal options, such as bus rapid transit, along Interstate 95 and US Route 1.
The study notes that Fairfax County and Prince William County are expected to add a significant population and jobs in the next 25 years. It recognizes that successful transit-oriented development planning can result in more people choosing to combine biking and walking with public transit to reach nearby destinations. Yet the study includes no mention of bicycling and walking infrastructure in its assessment despite the likely role of biking and walking in potentially increasing ridership.
This seems like a missed opportunity to stress to our elected representatives in Richmond the importance of prioritizing biking and walking infrastructure to maximize the impact of enhanced public transportation. It also is critical to make biking and walking infrastructure part of the initial planning and project development for all transportation projects to make Northern Virginia more livable, economically dynamic, and environmentally responsive to the challenges of climate change.
Please take action today and send your comments in support of including biking and walking infrastructure in the final report for the General Assembly to [email protected]. Comments must be submitted by November 17, 2021, so don’t wait.