Join Club

Washington Blvd Bridge Work to Begin This Spring

The project has been nearly 20 years in the making, but VDOT has finally nailed down rough a construction schedule for the Washington Boulevard bridge over Columbia Pike.

At a community meeting on Tuesday, VDOT project manager Christiana Briganti-Dunn said land acquisition and construction is expected to begin this spring and will be complete by Aug. 2015. The $51.5 million project is being paid for primarily with federal and state funds, although Arlington is expected to contribute about $1 million for utility relocation and upgrades.

The project will replace the crumbling Washington Boulevard bridge, which dates back to the 1940s, and replace it with a new, wider span that will be dubbed the Freedman’s Village Bridge, in honor of the enclave of freed slaves that was established nearby in 1863 and remained until the 1890s.

The new, wider bridge will allow a turn lane to be placed in between the four existing lanes of Columbia Pike. It will also allow for a 10-foot mixed-use path next to the westbound lanes, and the possible future addition of dedicated bicycle lanes. The design of the bridge was elevated by couple of inches to accommodate the planned Columbia Pike streetcar, Briganti-Dunn added.

Another planned change is the addition of two traffic lights on Columbia Pike, at the intersection with two sets of reconfigured Washington Boulevard ramps. The intersection of S. Quinn Street and Columbia Pike will be reconfigured as a one-way only entrance into the Arlington View neighborhood, and the traffic light there will be moved to the intersection of Columbia Pike and N. Queen Street, where reconfigured ramps onto and off of eastbound Washington Boulevard will converge.

On the northwest side of the new interchange, a 15-20 foot sound wall will be installed. The size of the barrier, and the loss of trees along its path, drew some criticism at Tuesday’s meeting, though engineers argued that it was the only feasible way to keep highway noise out of a nearby condo complex. VDOT promised to preserve or replant trees, where possible, and touted the addition of two storm water management ponds next to the new ramps as a plus, environmentally.

One thing that won’t be changing is the “time of day lane use” on eastbound Columbia Pike. Briganti-Dunn said that VDOT expects to maintain the use of the righthand eastbound lane as a right-turn only lane onto Washington Boulevard during the morning rush hour. However, the agency plans to replace the current small, easy-to-miss lane restriction signs with lighted, dynamic lane signs. It’s hoped that the new signs will help make the accident-prone ramp safer.

During construction, traffic disruptions will be kept to a minimum for Columbia Pike and Washington Boulevard drivers, Briganti-Dunn said. All travel lanes will be kept clear during the morning and evening rush hours, and drivers will only have to put up with intermittent lane closures during the long construction process. During certain construction and demolition stages — during off-peak hours — Columbia Pike traffic will be redirected up the existing northbound ramps to a four-way traffic signal that will be placed on Washington Boulevard. Briganti-Dunn said the traffic light, when it’s in place, is not expected to significantly reduce the capacity of either thoroughfare.

No local street detours are planned, and no homes will need to be torn down to make way for the reconfigured interchange, Briganti-Dunn said.

Recent Stories

We could tell you how great CarCare To Go is. We could tell you about how they are transforming the way people care for their cars with free valet pick-up…

Meet the two new legal professionals to join The Law Office of James Montana team.

Wakefield High School has reportedly been placed in lockdown amid a report of a trespasser in the school.

A well-regarded corner market in Rosslyn appears to be closed. When ARLnow stopped by Gallery Market & Cafe at 1800 N. Oak Street earlier this week, the lights were off,…

The Arlington-Aachen High School exchange is returning this summer and currently accepting applicants.

The sister-city partnership started in 1993 by the Arlington Sister Cities Association, which seeks to promote Arlington’s international profile through a variety of exchanges in education, commerce, culture and the arts. The exchange, scheduled June 17th to July 4th, includes a two-week homestay in Aachen plus three days in Berlin. Knowledge of the German language is not required for the trip.

Former participants have this to say:

_”The Aachen exchange was an eye-opening experience where I was fully immersed in the life of a German student. I loved biking through the countryside to Belgium, having gelato and picnics in the town square, and hanging out with my German host student’s friends. My first time out of the country, the Aachen exchange taught me to keep an open mind, because you never know what could be a life changing experience.” – Kelly M._

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

Learn about the new assessment of Arlington’s urban tree canopy and the many ecological and social benefits trees provide. Staff from the Green Infrastructure Center (GIC) will share study results and compare canopy cover for different areas of Arlington.The webinar will include assessments of ecosystem services such as stormwater mitigation, air quality, carbon uptake, and urban heat islands. For background on Arlington trees see the “Tree Benefits: Growing Arlington’s Urban Forest” presentation at http://www.gicinc.org/PDFs/Presentation_TreeBenefits_Arlington.pdf.

Please register in advance to assure your place at the webinar,

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/29543206508863839

About the Arlington County Civic Federation: The Arlington County Civic Federation (“ACCF”) is a not-for-profit corporation which provides a forum for civic groups to discuss, debate, inform, advocate and provide oversight on important community issues, on a non-partisan basis. Its members include over ninety civic groups representing a broad cross-section of the community. Communications, resolutions and feedback are regularly provided to the Arlington County Government.

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

Valentine Pop-Up at George Mason University

Valentine gifts for someone special or for yourself are here at George Mason University from noon -4pm on February 14, 2023. Satisfy your sweet tooth with Kingsbury Chocolates, find a handmade bag from Karina Gaull, pick up treats from Village

Standup Comedy Showcase Starring Matt Ruby (Comedy Central)

Dead Horse Comedy Productions brings together top comedians from the DMV and beyond for a live standup comedy show!

Matt Ruby, Headliner

Matt Ruby is a comedian, writer, and filmmaker from New York City. His comedy has been filmed by

×

Subscribe to our mailing list