A busy street in the East Falls Church neighborhood is slated to get safer crossings for pedestrians and cyclists.
Arlington County has selected N. Sycamore Street between Langston Blvd and 19th Street N. — near the East Falls Church Metro station and not far from the W&OD Trail — as site of a new Complete Streets project. This segment “presents intersection crossing challenges for bicyclists and pedestrians,” according to the project webpage.
The intersection of N. Sycamore Street and Washington Blvd, within the project’s boundaries, was the site of a fatal crash last Wednesday. Prior to the crash, the street segment has seen one serious collision between 2013 and this summer: one with severe injuries in 2019, according to Arlington County crash data.
The webpage for the project went live two weeks ago, says Department of Environmental Services spokeswoman Kathryn O’Brien. County staff will soon solicit public feedback that will be used to develop a concept plan.
“Existing Conditions Feedback will kick off later in November,” O’Brien said. “This feedback, along with other data and planning guidance, will help staff formulate a concept design. Once staff have developed a community-informed concept, that concept will be shared for additional public feedback.”
Funding for changes to N. Sycamore Street, first identified as having a need for safety upgrades in 2011, was included in the 2022-24 Capital Improvements Plan adopted this summer. It’s been a long road to get the project on the schedule, however.
Staff developed preliminary plans in 2015 and, in 2016, twice applied unsuccessfully for transportation grants for the 2018 fiscal year, O’Brien said.
“This project was deferred as part of the FY 2021 CIP, due to revenue constraints because of COVID,” she said.
Since 2011, staff have studied the street twice and have some hypothetical designs on hand as a result.
In 2015, the county received a grant to study ways to improve pedestrian and cycling access to the East Falls Church Metro station, once a popular station to ride to that is still recovering from the pandemic-era hit to commuting. A new $2 million, 92-spot bike facility to accommodate cyclists made its debut in August 2020.
Four years later, the county received a grant to study a gap in the W&OD Trail, where trail users are routed through Benjamin Banneker Park and residential streets.
Improved crossings at 19th Street N. could be an interim solution to the gap, according to the project page.
Although this transportation project’s scope is bound by 19th Street N. and Langston Blvd, eventually, the county envisions improved bicycle amenities further up and down N. Sycamore Street.
“The 2019 adopted Bicycle Element of the Master Transportation Plan recommends N. Sycamore Street as an enhanced bicycle facility between Williamsburg Blvd and the East Falls Church line,” the project page says.
The project is funded with a mix of Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, local and state funding, plus bond funds.
Hat tip to Stephen Repetski
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Lyon Park & Ashton Heights’ biennial home & garden biennial tour is back. The tour will include contemporary custom homes, older historic bungalows as well as renovated properties. One of the stunning homes on the tour is pictured above. In addition to beautiful & unique homes, the Villa & Vistas ’22 event will conclude with a festive reception at the Lyon Park Community Center at 414 N Fillmore Street, Arlington VA 22201. What could be better right?
All proceeds from this event will go to the Lyon Park Citizens Association (LPCA) towards our neighborhood jewel & hub, the Lyon Park Community Center (LPCC).
When: Sunday, October 2nd, Noon – 4 PM.
Where: Meet to get your tickets and the tour map at the Lyon Park Community Center (414 N Fillmore Street) We will have a table with information outside.
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