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Board Approves Street Plan

The county board has approved an overhaul to its Master Transportation Plan that will provide new guidance for the design, construction and usage of streets in Arlington County.

The plan focuses on making sure that Arlington’s streets are safe and accommodating to a number of modes of transportation, including walking, biking, transit and driving.

“Arlington’s goal is to create ‘streets for people,'” County Board Chairman Chris Zimmerman said in a statement. “Today’s action is the culmination of years of work by citizens and staff to craft County policies that will achieve our vision for ‘complete streets,’ streets that will support sustainable development and encourage healthier lifestyles.”

Under the new plan, streets will be classified into ten subgroups of arterial and local streets based on adjacent land use. The plan calls for all types of arterial streets to have a bike lane, a designated shared bike and vehicle lane or an adjacent trail. It also calls for “urban center local” streets to include a shared lane.

To improve safety, the speed limit on “downtown” streets will be reduced to 25 miles per hour. Speed limits would also be reduced in work zones. Meanwhile, pedestrian walkways will be improved through enhanced signage and high-visibility markings.

Street repaving will be done more frequently (on a 15-year cycle) and the quality of street repairs will be improved. Major streets and streets in poor condition will receive repaving priority, while streets lacking maintenance-saving improvements like gutters and curbs will be repaired instead of repaved.

The board approved the plan by a vote of 5-0. See more details here and here.

Flickr pool photo by Chris Rief

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