MAY 2009 FABB News

A periodic publication of Fairfax Advocates for Better Bicycling

MULLIGAN ROAD/TELEGRAPH ROAD PUBLIC HEARING

Before it was closed after Sept. 11, 2001, many cyclists used Woodlawn Road to travel through Fort Belvoir between Telegraph Road and the Route 1 area. Mulligan Road is a new road that will replace Woodlawn Road from Route 1 to Telegraph Road. As part of the project, Telegraph Road will be widened. VDOT is holding a public meeting on the project on Tuesday, May 26, 2009 from 5:00-8:00 p.m. at Hayfield Secondary School cafeteria, 7630 Telegraph Road, Alexandria. There will be a presentation at 6:00 p.m. Cyclists are encouraged to attend to speak out for on-road bike facilities on both roads. See the public hearing flier.

LAWYERS ROAD BIKE LANES

VDOT recently held two meetings to discuss a proposal to reduce the travel lanes on Lawyers Road from 4 to 3 lanes with 5-foot bike lanes and a center turn lane between Fox Mill Rd and Myrtle Lane, about 2 miles in length. Both meetings were well-attended, with many bicyclists speaking out in favor of the proposal. The route is used by bike commuters and recreational cyclists who travel in that area. This section is part of the Reston Triathlon bike route and is used by many cyclists training for the event.

Because of the changes in the lane configuration, traffic crashes could be reduced by as much as 20%. After the lane reduction VDOT estimates that travel delays will be increased only slightly, between 1-3 seconds on average at the two signalized intersections, Soapstone and Steeplechase. It will also provide the first ever bike lanes in Reston. Some residents are opposed to the project. Cyclists should contact VDOT (Randy.Dittberner@vdot.virginia.gov) and Supervisor Hudgins (hntrmill@fairfaxcounty.gov): Support VDOTís proposal to make Lawyers Road a safer road with a design that will help reduce crashes, slow traffic, and provide bike lanes. Summary of the meeting, Project details.

GALLOWS ROAD BIKE LANES

VDOT is also going to add bike lanes to Gallows Road from the Dunn Loring Metro station north to Old Courthouse Road in Tysons. An information meeting was recently held to allow the broader community to hear about the proposal, see the plans, and comment on the project. About 25 people attended the meeting hosted by Supervisor Smyth, who introduced the VDOT and Fairfax County DOT team who presented the plans.

Attendees were able to view several large aerial photos of the project, showing how the road will look after the striping of the bike lanes. The first phase of the project will consist of bike lanes from just north of the I-66 bridge to the W&OD Trail. There will be a short section of wide curb lanes between the W&OD Trail and Idylwood. Construction is expected to occur this summer.

The second phase will include bike lanes and wide curb lanes from Idylwood to Old Courthouse. This phase involves more extensive median and pavement work and will not happen until 2010.

FABB supports the project and sent a letter of support to VDOT earlier in the year. At the meeting several bicyclists spoke out in favor of the project. A representative from an adjacent homeowners association submitted a list of questions. Most comments were positive and we look forward to the completion of the first phase later this year.

UPDATE: Some local residents are strongly opposed to the bike lanes. Cyclists should contact Supervisor Smyth to voice your support for the project.

Notes from Gallows Road briefing given by VDOT at a recent FABB meeting.

NON-MOTORIZED ACCESS TO TYSONS

Many people want to be able to bike and walk to Tysons. Since the only parking available at the four Tysons Metro stations is for bicycles, driving there is not an option. One way to ensure that gridlock in Northern Virginia continues is to propagate the current conditions that prevent people from easily walking and biking between neighborhoods. Candidates for Vienna Town Council will discuss this and other issues at a forum scheduled for April 29, Wednesday at the Vienna Community Center from 7:30-9:00 p.m.

CUTS TO THE FAIRFAX BICYCLE PROGRAM

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors recently cut the Bicycle Program operating budget by 45 percent or $170,456. This is money that was supposed to go toward several bicycle pilot projects that would create bicycle facilities in targeted areas.

With the Comprehensive Bicycle Initiative passed in 2006, the county has made progress in providing funding for bicycle activities; now is not the time to cut what little funding is available, especially now that more people are being encouraged to use alternative forms of transportation.

TYSONS METRO ACCESS GROUP

Supervisor Hudgins, along with Supervisors Smyth and Foust, has asked Fairfax County staff to form a group to review multimodal access to the four planned Metro stations in Tysons, including "bicycle connectivity to and from surrounding communities that will be to the success of the new urban 'downtown'".

FABB participated in a similar effort for the planned Reston Metro stations, the Reston Metro Access Group. We hope to be represented on the Tysons group and will present our draft Tysons bike plan, which was presented to the Planning Commission on February 19.

FABB CHAIRMAN ELECTED TO WABA BOARD

At the WABA Annual Membership Meeting on March 31, Bruce Wright, FABB Chairman, was elected to the WABA board. His main goals are bicycle advocacy and education, especially in Northern Virginia. If you have ideas for how FABB can help WABA in these and other areas, please contact us at chairman@fabb-bikes.org.

PAUL'S RIDE FOR LIFE

Some of you may remember hearing about a cyclist who died as the result of a crash on the W&OD trail on June 4, 2006. Paul Rossmeissl was riding alone on the trail just east of Hunter Mill Road when, according to Fairfax County police, he hit a pedestrian, fell and struck his head. He died 3 days later. As a result of this tragedy, Paul gave the gift of life to three individuals who received his liver and both of his kidneys. Many other individuals benefited from the donation of his heart valves, bone and tissue.

Paul's Ride for Life is dedicated to his memory and will benefit the Washington Regional Transplant Community. The ride will be held on Saturday, June 6 and will consist of 9 and 32 mile ride options. See the Paul's Ride website for details and registration information.

UPCOMING EVENTS

FABB BLOG

For other news and articles of interest, visit the FABB blog.


Fairfax Advocates for Better Bicycling is a grassroots initiative, affiliated with the Washington Area Bicyclist Association, aiming to make bicycling an integral part of Fairfax County's transportation network. Visit us on the web at www.fabb-bikes.org. FABB News provides periodic updates on Fairfax County bicycling issues, along with occasional updates and action alerts on breaking news. We encourage all FABB supporters to join WABA at www.waba.org. If you would like to subscribe to the newsletter, send a message to .

Contact FABB via email: info@fabb-bikes.org

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