B-52 Flyover Attracts Attention — A B-52 Stratofortress flew low and loud over Arlington Thursday morning, likely as part of an Arlington National Cemetery funeral, turning plenty of heads. [Twitter, Twitter]
Va. Coronavirus App Gets Positive Reviews — “I often use this column to warn about the dangers of apps that track you. This time, I’m going to recommend you actually install one. There’s a new kind of app that uses your smartphone’s Bluetooth wireless signals to figure out when you’ve been in contact with someone who has tested positive for the novel coronavirus… It’s called Covidwise, and works in the state of Virginia.” [Washington Post]
Pedestrian Committee Chair Slams County — “‘The response that we got back from the County Manager’s Office and senior County leadership was that pedestrians are not a priority,’ said Eric Goldstein, Chair of Arlington County’s Pedestrian Advisory Committee (PAC), during the group’s first virtual meeting last week.” [Street Justice]
New W&OD Trail Detour Monday — “Upcoming construction activity for the new W&OD Trail Bridge over Lee Highway (Route 29) in Arlington will require a trail detour for about two weeks beginning Monday, August 24.” [Press Release]
ACPD Food Drive Deemed Success — The Arlington County Police Department’s “Fill the Cruiser” food drive collected just over 6,500 pounds of food last week. [Arlington Connection]
D.C. Area Leads in Tech Leasing — “Among the 10 markets reporting the most tech leasing volume in Q2, the year-over-year change in tech leasing activity ranged from +71% (Atlanta) to -74% (San Francisco Bay Area). Washington, D.C., and San Diego were the only other markets with volume increases, while Manhattan also had a large decrease. The five markets with the most leasing volume in Q2 were Washington, D.C., San Francisco Bay Area, Atlanta, Manhattan and Dallas/Ft. Worth.” [CBRE via Potomac Tech Wire]
A portion of the Custis Trail will be detoured next week for construction of a roundabout.
The roundabout is being installed on the south side of the pedestrian underpass beneath I-66, which is currently a somewhat dangerous T-intersection. The project is part of VDOT’s larger I-66 widening project.
For two weeks, from Monday, Aug. 24 to Sunday, Sept. 6, those heading to and from the W&OD Trail on the Custis Trail will be detoured around Bon Air Park, via Wilson Boulevard and N. Lexington Street.
More from VDOT:
The Custis Trail will close in Arlington’s Bon Air Park between the Washington and Old Dominion (W&OD) Trail and the I-66 underpass for up to two weeks for construction to create a roundabout to enhance safety for trail users. The closure is planned from Monday, August 24, through Sunday, September 6. Detour signs will be posted to direct pedestrians, cyclists, and other trail users around the closure. This work is being done as a component of the Transform 66 Inside the Beltway Eastbound Widening Project.
A posted detour will route users around the closure using the W&OD Trail, Wilson Boulevard, N. Lexington Street, and N. 9th Road to reach the bike/pedestrian bridge over I-66. Delineators will be placed temporarily on a short span of Wilson Boulevard to separate cyclists from vehicle traffic and provide a wider bike lane to allow cyclists to travel in both directions for about 500 feet. The sidewalk on the north side of Wilson Boulevard will also be available for trail users.
A roundabout is being constructed on the south side of the Custis Trail I-66 underpass to improve safety and sightlines for pedestrians, cyclists, and other users of the Custis Trail and Bon Air Park. The Custis Trail remains closed under I-66 for safety reasons while an additional travel lane is added overhead. The trail is expected to fully reopen in late October 2020.
The I-66 Eastbound Widening Project will add a travel lane along four miles of eastbound I-66 and install approximately 12,000 linear feet of new and replacement noise barriers. The project also includes constructing a new direct access ramp from eastbound I-66 to the West Falls Church Metro Station at the Route 7 interchange, and a new W&OD Trail bridge over Lee Highway (Route 29).
A portion of the W&OD Trail is being put back onto a temporary pavement trail and off sidestreets as VDOT continues work on a new trail bridge.
The new detour will take trail users, who previously had to travel on nearby streets, on a 200-foot temporary pavement path adjacent to the new bridge under construction.
The bridge will separate trail users from traffic at the intersection of Lee Highway and Fairfax Drive in the East Falls Church aera, with the aim of enhancing safety for both trail users and motorists.
“This section of the W&OD Trail serves approximately 1,500 trail users on weekdays and over 2,000 on weekends,” VDOT said on its website. “On weekdays, the W&OD Trail is a significant commuter route, carrying a steady flow of cyclists in both directions, tying together much of the region’s trail network. On weekends, the trail is a prime recreational resource for thousands of cyclists, runners, walkers, and more.”
A press release noted that the new configuration will mostly remain in place until the project is completed, though the previous detour onto side streets could come up again during some phases of construction.
Meanwhile, work continues on the bridge with an expected opening this fall. New abutments and bridge beams have been installed, VDOT said, with crews currently working on installing steel onto the deck. Concrete pours are expected to finish by late April.
“W&OD Trail bridge construction is part of the Transform 66 Inside the Beltway Eastbound Widening Project, which is adding a travel lane along four miles of eastbound I-66 and installing approximately 12,000 linear feet of new and replacement noise barriers,” VDOT said. “The project also includes constructing a new direct access ramp from eastbound I-66 to the West Falls Church Metro Station at the Route 7 Interchange, which is scheduled to begin in spring 2020.”
A $2.6 million project to renovate Benjamin Banneker Park will close the park and a portion of the W&OD Trail starting the week after Thanksgiving.
The project, which was given the green light in September, will widen the trails from 8 to 12 feet and upgrade the athletic field, playground, picnic area, dog park and more.
“We are giving people a two week notice to make adjustments,” said Arlington Dept. of Parks and Recreation spokeswoman Susan Kalish. “The trail and park will close December 3. We’ve provided detour recommendations on sandwich boards around the park as well as online. We are putting up a banner at the dog park directing people to the web to find an alternative dog park.”
Not everyone is happy about the trail detour, which will redirect pedestrian and bike traffic from the park — near the East Falls Church Metro station — to the busy intersection of N. Sycamore Street and 19th Street N., which has traffic lights and pedestrian crossing signals.
“Many of us are caught off guard with the total closure of the trail between the creek and the soccer field for the duration of the project,” said Kelly Alexis, a local resident, in an email to county staff that she also sent to ARLnow and other concerned residents.
“Arlington County has provided only one re-route option — funneling all pedestrian and bicycle traffic to the most congested possible intersection; passing across the entry and exit to the EFC Metro Kiss-and-ride lot,” Alexis continued. “This was not part of the plan that was presented to us at the open meetings and has a major impact on bicycle and pedestrian traffic.”
In response to a request to complete trail construction first, before the other park changes, a county staffer said that was not a viable option for a number of reasons. Among them: the need to fence off the trail from the rest of the under-construction park — thus creating “a safety concern for users who would then have very limited egress through a long confined corridor in the park if they were endangered or injured.”
Kalish said she is not aware of any plans to make changes to the detour.
Construction is currently expected to wrap up between July and September of 2020, according to the county website.
If you cruise Rosslyn streets late at night, you might want to avoid Wilson Blvd in Rosslyn over the next month.
From Sundays through Thursdays between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m., Wilson Blvd is scheduled to be closed between N. Oak and N. Quinn streets.
The closures are expected to start Sunday, Aug. 18, and continue through the end of September.
The street will be closed to allow Dominion workers to upgrade power service to handle Arlington Public Schools’ new Heights Building and the redevelopment of 1555 Wilson Blvd as luxury condos and retail, according to a press release.
Cars and buses are expected to be detoured north to Key Blvd during the closures, though the sidewalk on the south side of the street will remain open for bicycle and pedestrian traffic.
(Updated at 4:50 p.m.) Eastbound Clarendon Blvd was closed between N. Veitch Street and N. Courthouse Road for most of Friday due to a water main break.
Crews started digging up the street near the former Cosi this morning in an effort to fix the 12-inch pipe, and as of 4 p.m. were still working.
A detour was in place for eastbound traffic, though one lane reopened Friday afternoon.
Arlington’s Dept. of Environmental Services says that a number of water customers in the area, including businesses, are without water.
Update 4:20pm: Water service is restored in the Courthouse area affected by today's water main break. One lane of Clarendon Boulevard is being reopened for pm rush hour eastbound #vatraffic. pic.twitter.com/23Zq6rxM62
— Arlington Department of Environmental Services (@ArlingtonDES) June 7, 2019
Incident: Water Main Break
Location: EB Clarendon Bl btwn N Veitch and N Courthouse Rd
Impact: A traffic detour is in place. ETA to completion is 3 pm. Seek alternate routes. Questions? Call 703-228-6555. pic.twitter.com/GZbP3P6Ewf
— Arlington Alert (@arlingtonalert) June 7, 2019
Photo courtesy anonymous
Construction work around some of the Pentagon’s parking lots is prompting a new round of traffic changes and detours in the area.
Work focused on the new I-395 express lanes previously prompted the closure of the west side of S. Eads Street from Army Navy Drive to where it nears the Pentagon’s south parking lot at S. Rotary Road. Starting yesterday (Tuesday), workers are now moving to the east side of S. Eads instead, allowing traffic to use both sides of the street once more in the area.
Drivers will now be able to access the 395 HOV lanes as normal once more, but there are still some detours planned for the area, according to a press release.
During the morning rush hour, from 6-9 a.m., drivers will be able to use S. Rotary Road to access I-395’s southbound HOV lanes, but won’t be able to access a section of the western side of S. Eads Street. Anyone on 395 will be able to turn left to reach the Pentagon’s south parking lot, or turn right onto S. Eads.
During the afternoon rush hour, from 3-8 p.m., both sides of S. Eads Street will be fully accessible.
TRANSPORTATION ADVISORY: EFFECTIVE 1/22/19. NEW traffic pattern on Eads St. to begin on or about 1/22/19. Both lanes will open up with restrictions as construction continues. Please use caution and pay attention to updated signage and traffic control officers. #395expresslanes pic.twitter.com/7xfjuUTqjL
— WHS Transportation (@WHS_Transport) January 22, 2019
Signs will be posted to guide drivers about all these changes, and construction is expected to continue through the spring.
A full 395 HOV shutdown is also scheduled for this weekend, starting at Friday (Jan. 25) at 11 p.m and concluding Monday (Jan. 28) at 4 a.m.
Arlington Police Involved in D.C. Standoff — County police are working with their counterparts in D.C. to arrest a man wanted on rape charges in Arlington. When they attempted to arrest him last night, he barricaded himself inside his home on the 3300 block of Mt. Pleasant Street N.W. [Twitter, PoPville]
ART Route Changes Start This Weekend — Riders on Arlington Transit’s 41, 42, 43 and 75 lines may notice some schedule adjustments starting Saturday. Service will become more frequent on all of the lines, and the northbound stop at the Courthouse Metro Station will become permanent. [Arlington Transit]
Arlington Planners Bring ‘Smart Growth’ Strategies to Md. — At a talk yesterday, the head of Arlington County’s planning division shared some wisdom on “Arlington’s smart growth journey” to planners in Prince George’s County, Md. “As a regional, national and international model of smart growth, Arlington, has demonstrated… how the mistakes and impacts of suburban sprawl can be corrected and avoided through a visionary and continuous commitment to innovative planning,” the event program noted. [Prince George’s County]
Valley Fest Road Closures This Weekend — S. Oakland Street will play host to the second annual Valley Fest, backed by New District Brewing and other local businesses and artists. There will be plenty of beer on tap, but police warn to watch out for some road closures. [Arlington Police]
Leaf Blowers Irk Arlingtonians — Some county residents raised a stink with the County Board over the pervasive drone of leaf blowers, now that fall is nearly here. But local officials say their hands are tied by state law and likely can’t pass any sort of ordinance to limit the noise. [Falls Church News-Press]
Head ‘Back to the Future’ with Rhodeside Grill — The Rosslyn-area restaurant is offering throwback cocktails and dishes from the 1950s and 1980s to commemorate the classic comedy. The event is set for Oct. 12. [Facebook]
Detours on Arlington-McLean Border This Week — Work to replace a culvert will result in the closure Valley Wood Road in McLean, running just near Williamsburg Middle School and Discovery Elementary School. [Tysons Reporter]
Firefighters Extinguish Bellevue Forest Blaze — County firefighters say an attic fan caught fire in a home on the 3100 block of N. Quincy Street around 6 p.m. last night. There were no injuries. [Twitter]
A section of the Custis Trail running alongside I-66 near Rosslyn is set to close for the next month.
Starting today (Monday), workers will start repairing the trail as it runs between N. Adams Street and McCoy Park to make it a bit more hospitable to cyclists. Construction is set to last through Aug. 24.
Specifically, Arlington’s Department of Parks and Recreation and its contractors will focus on “a series of bumps, or undulations, on the trail surface near the pedestrian flyover bridge over I-66,” according to a blog post by Bike Arlington program manager Erin Potter.
“This part of the Custis Trail is too narrow (between a retaining wall and I-66) to allow repair work to happen while the trail is open,” Potter wrote.
The county plans to post signs for detours for both pedestrians and cyclists near the closed section of the trail. Walkers and runners will be redirected down N. Adams Street and then along Lee Highway to bypass the construction, while bicyclists have their choice of three different options.
Bike Arlington has full details on the detours posted on its website.
The Custis Trail was open this morning, but the N Adams-McCoy Park closure will start soon.
— BikeArlington (@BikeArlington) July 30, 2018
Construction around one of the Pentagon’s parking lots kicking off this week could produce some big headaches for drivers and bus riders alike.
Starting this morning (Monday), work will shut down the west side of S. Eads Street from Army Navy Drive to where it nears the Pentagon’s south parking lot at S. Rotary Road.
That will shift both northbound and southbound traffic to the east side of the street. In the mornings, from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m., that will cut off access to I-395’s northbound HOV lanes and Army Navy Drive from S. Rotary Road. Crews will post a detour and drivers should follow signs. In the same time period, access to northbound S. Eads Street from the right lane of S. Rotary Road will be reserved for anyone heading for I-395’s southbound HOV lanes.
Construction will include “median reconfiguration, road widening, pavement and drainage work,” according to VDOT, prompting some major traffic snarls.
“As current traffic volume along Eads Street is near capacity during peak periods, we expect significant traffic congestion and delays along Eads Street,” VDOT wrote in an advisory. “Periodic nighttime/weekend closures may also take place to complete the construction activities.”
VDOT is recommending that drivers looking to reach the I-395 HOV lanes during the construction to use the ramps near the Pentagon’s north parking lots at Boundary Channel Drive instead.
Arlington Transit is also warning bus riders looking to reach the Pentagon to expect “significant delays for ART buses entering and exiting” the facility’s lots. ART plans to issue service advisories as needed.
VDOT says work will shift to the east side of S. Eads Street sometime this fall, then last for an additional two months. The construction is included as part of the broader project focused on the I-395 express lanes.
Photo via VDOT