by Heather Mongilio — October 2, 2015 at 11:30 am 458 0

Crystal City Potomac Yard Transistway (via Arlington County)Construction on the Crystal City Potomac Yard Transitway will continue through the fall after being delayed by construction conflicts.

“Unforeseen utility conflicts, poor soil conditions and underground obstructions slowed work at several station locations,” the county said on the project’s website.

Arlington County is currently working with contractors to set a new completion date for the project, said county spokesman Eric Balliet, adding that the county will update the community once a schedule has been set.

The county is also holding a public meeting next week to give an update on transitway. The meeting on Oct. 8 will be held at the Residence Inn (2800 S. Potomac Avenue) from 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Currently, the county is working on new transitway lanes and on three of the new stations, Balliet said. Crystal Drive, S. Clark Street and S. Bell Street are affected by the road construction, he added.

“New dedicated transit lanes in Potomac Yard are nearing completion,” Balliet said. “Traffic signs and station signage are being installed, and we’ve started testing LED signs and other technologies that will support the transitway. Our contractor recently resumed construction at several station locations where utility conflicts, poor soils and underground obstructions had slowed work.”

Once completed, the Crystal City Potomac Yard transitway will provide better bus service along the Route 1 corridor, especially during rush hour, the county said.

“The new 4.5-mile Transitway between the Crystal City and Braddock Road Metrorail stations will provide faster, more reliable bus service along the congested Route 1 corridor, with amenities designed to attract new riders,” the county said.

The transitway project broke ground in July 2014 and was originally slated to take 10 months.

Photo via Arlington County

by Heather Mongilio — September 28, 2015 at 1:45 pm 0

Westbound I-66 at Westmoreland/Washington Blvd (file photo)

Starting tonight, commuters on westbound I-66 can expect delays from nighttime lane closures.

The Virginia Department of Transportation will pave westbound 1-66 between Lee Highway and the Dulles Airport Access Road in Fairfax County overnight, causing some lanes to be closed.

Crews will start paving the road tonight at 10 p.m., and will continue for the next three weeks. Paving is scheduled to occur between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m., Sunday through Friday.

During the construction, commuters should expect delays and are advised to take alternate routes.

“While VDOT fully understands the impact of night work on the residents, the traffic volumes on I-66 do not allow us to do this work during the day,” the department said on its website. “VDOT has held several meetings with the contractor to come up with ways to minimize the impact of noise stemming from night operations. VDOT staff will work closely with the contractor to reduce the impact of delivery trucks and construction equipment during each operation.”

The paving is part of a $33 million project to improve westbound 1-66 by connecting the on-ramp at Washington Blvd to the off ramp at Dulles Airport Access Road. Once completed, there will be a one-mile auxiliary lane and a new 12-foot shoulder.

VDOT will hold a public meeting on Oct. 7 about “Transform 66,” a project to turn 1-66 into a toll road during morning and evening rush hour and increase the HOV requirement to three people. The meeting will be from 7-9 p.m. at Washington-Lee High School (1301 N. Stafford Street).

Changes to I-66 inside the Beltway have largely been met with resistance from Arlington residents and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority.

by ARLnow.com — September 21, 2015 at 10:10 am 1,736 0

Foggy view of D.C., the Capitol and the Memorial Bridge from Arlington (Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf)

Arlington Woman Sues Restaurant — Laura Donahue, a 36-year-old Arlington resident, is suing the new D.C. restaurant Fig & Olive, saying she became ill with salmonella after eating there.The restaurant was shut down by the health department for several days after numerous reports of diners afflicted with salmonella. [Washington Post]

County Board Approves Street Projects — At its meeting on Saturday, the Arlington County Board approved $2.9 million in neighborhood street improvement projects. The projects, in Ashton Heights, Lyon Village, Arlington Ridge and Leeway, will be paid for with neighborhood conservation bond funds. [Arlington County]

Refinancing to Save County Millions — Arlington County expects to save $2.2 million over 14 years via a refinancing of wastewater and water system bonds that was approved unanimously by the County Board on Saturday. [Arlington County]

Water Main Rehab Contract Approved — The Arlington County Board has approved a $2.4 million contract to rehabilitate some of the county’s aging water mains. Some of the mains set for a cleaning and a cement mortar lining are more than 60 years old. [Arlington County]

Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf

by Heather Mongilio — September 14, 2015 at 6:00 am 416 0

Traffic delays are expected on Williamsburg Blvd as the county builds a new water main under the road.

“The County is building new water mains and modifying pipes to the Minor Hill Reservoir site and its four underground storage tanks. The projects will improve the water system’s reliability and redundancy at our most critical and largest water storage area,” said county spokeswoman Jessica Baxter.

Construction is scheduled to start today on southbound Williamsburg Blvd. at N. Sycamore Street, Baxter said.

There are potential traffic delays, as the county will be narrowing the existing travel lane to allow for the water main installation. Southbound traffic will be affected for eight to 12 weeks, according to a press release.

The county will also be closing a gap in the water main that runs under westbound Williamsburg Blvd between N. Frederick and N. Harrison Streets.

The westbound lane will be closed to traffic until summer of 2016 while crews work on the water main, according to the county. Cars will be routed around the construction using a part of the eastbound lane on Williamsburg Blvd.

There is no set date for when the county will start working on the main line under the westbound lane, Baxter said.

“Earliest anticipated start date would be Sept. 21, but we’ll update the community when a date is confirmed,” she said.

The water main project will cost $4.1 million and will come from the county’s utility fund, according to the press release. Once the water main line construction is completed, water will be able to flow through storage tanks easier, resulting in fresher water from the tap, the county said.

“The projects will boost the water system’s reliability and redundancy by providing a backup main to our most critical and largest water storage area,” said the press release.

Photos via Google Maps

by Heather Mongilio — September 9, 2015 at 1:40 pm 1,217 0

Starting tomorrow, drivers should prepare for possible delays when traveling to Reagan National Airport from Crystal City or the southbound GW Parkway.

The National Park Service and the Federal Highway Administration are planning to begin maintenance on the Route 233 bridge, which connects Jefferson Davis Highway in the Crystal City area to the airport. An off-ramp from the southbound lanes of the GW Parkway also connects to the bridge.

Single lane closures on the bridge are planned from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in both directions, according to the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. At least one lane will be open on the bridge and on the GW Parkway ramp will remain open during the nine month project, which will replace the bridge’s median, among other improvements.

“In addition to directional signage, Airports Authority Police and Park Service Police will be present to assist in directing drivers through the area and to minimize the traffic impact in the construction zone,” the Airports Authority said in a statement.

Drivers should expect delays and detours when using the bridge to access the airport.

“The Park Service and Federal Highway Administration bridge construction project will allow for better access to and from the airport and add safety improvements to sidewalks and trails for pedestrians,” the Airports Authority said.

by Heather Mongilio — August 21, 2015 at 3:30 pm 1,840 0

Starting Monday morning, commuters will have to find an alternate route to get from the GW Parkway to the Key Bridge.

National Park Service will close the ramp from southbound GW Parkway to Key Bridge starting before rush hour Monday morning and running through Friday, Aug. 28. The ramp will reopen Saturday morning, said NPS spokesman Aaron LaRocca.

NPS will be replacing the entire surface of the ramp while it is closed. The repairs include milling the road, replacing gravel and overlaying with asphalt.

There will be no detours. NPS advises commuters to find alternate routes and to expect delays.

by Heather Mongilio — August 13, 2015 at 8:45 pm 774 0

Arlington Ridge Road will be closed between 19th Road S. and 23rd Street S.

Arlington Ridge Road will be closed Friday while crews connect new properties to a main water line.

The road will be closed between 19th Road S. and 23rd Street S. from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. for water service installation.

This is not an emergency repair, as an Arlington Alert erroneously indicated, said Jessica Baxter, a spokeswoman with Arlington’s Dept. of Environmental Services.

“These installations are done for new properties that require a service line to be built and connected to the public main for water service,” she said.

During the construction, drivers will be directed to take detours. Drivers coming from southbound I-395 can take Army Navy Drive to 23rd Street S. to get onto Arlington Ridge Road. Drivers going northbound can take Army Navy Drive instead of Arlington Ridge Road, Baxter said.

Arlington Ridge Road has previously been closed for emergency repairs due to water main issues. The county is currently in a design phase for replacing the main water line on Arlington Ridge Road between 23rd Street S. and S. Lynn Street.

Image via Google Maps

by Heather Mongilio — August 12, 2015 at 11:30 am 1,873 0

(Updated at 2:30 p.m.) Cyclists will have to use detours around parts of Custis Trail while crews work to resurface and repair the pavement.

The county started repairing parts of the trail between N. Harrison and N. Frederick Streets and 11th Street N. and N. Glebe Road on Tuesday. Construction is expected to last until next Friday, Aug. 21.

During the trail work, crews will be milling the surface, removing root heaves and overlaying the trail with asphalt, according to the Bike Arlington forum.

The planned construction will cost $150,000, said Susan Kalish, spokeswoman for the Arlington Dept. of Parks and Recreation.

During construction cyclists and pedestrians are encouraged to use marked detours, which primarily run along low-traffic residential streets.

by Mariah Joyce — August 11, 2015 at 4:15 pm 3,457 0

Five Points Intersection (Copy)Arlington County is finalizing the design for changes to the historically busy and confusing “Five Points Intersection” in Cherrydale.

The intersection, located near the Cherrydale Volunteer Fire Department at the confluence of Lee Highway, Old Dominion Drive, N. Quincy Street, Military Road and N. Quebec Street, has long been a source of ire for pedestrians and drivers alike because it can create dangerously complicated traffic patterns.

This frustration increased in 2013 when the county chose to move forward with proposed changes to the intersection as part of the Cherrydale Lee Highway Revitalization Program, over the objections of neighborhood residents. While the changes were intended to improve the intersection for pedestrians in keeping with the program’s goal of a more walkable Cherrydale, residents claimed they made the intersection even worse.

According to a 2014 neighborhood update on the project, some alterations that irked residents, such as guides directing cars to turn left in front of oncoming traffic (known as “puppy paw guides”), have since been removed.

Five-way intersection in CherrydaleHowever, the update claimed the changes were not extensive enough and the way residents turned before, while not a typical traffic pattern, was actually safer and more efficient.

As of now, the county is still moving forward with many of their proposed modifications. According to project manager Elizabeth Diggs, the project design is 90 percent complete and changes will include the installation of wider sidewalks, the addition of bike lanes, reflective crosswalks and handicap ramps, and upgrades to traffic signals, timing and street lights.

Diggs said recommendations from the Virginia Department of Transportation, county staff and an outside consultant were taken into account when finalizing the design. The project webpage says that recommendations from the Cherrydale Listserv and public meetings were also incorporated.

“The intersection improvements are being designed to improve vehicle turning movements and create a safer environment for pedestrian, bicycle and transit users,” said Diggs.

Construction on the project, originally planned for this spring and summer, is now slated to begin this winter.

by ARLnow.com — July 28, 2015 at 4:45 pm 1,420 0

Spout Run Parkway (photo via Google Maps)The National Park Service this week is beginning a project to repave Spout Run Parkway.

The two-month project will result in lane closures and rush hour delays between the GW Parkway and Lorcom Lane.

From an NPS press release:

George Washington Memorial Parkway (GWMP) will begin a roadway project on July 27, 2015, which is expected to last through late September, along Spout Run Parkway in both directions between GWMP and Lorcom Lane. The project will also include work on the southbound GWMP ramp to Key Bridge, and Rosslyn Circle Ramp onto northbound GWMP.

Throughout the 50-day project, motorists should expect single lane closures for a period of up to 10 days per lane in order to mill and overlay the road and replace the guard-rails. No detours will be in place, so please plan accordingly for delays, especially during rush hour. Every effort is being made to complete the work in a timely manner and minimize traffic delays.

Photo via Google Maps

by Heather Mongilio — July 28, 2015 at 12:00 pm 836 0

1-395 and Glebe Road (via Google Maps)

Arlington residents will have a chance to ask questions and weigh in on upcoming repairs to the interchange of I-395 and Glebe Road.

Virginia Department of Transportation will hold an open house tonight (Tuesday) from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Gunston Middle School (2700 S. Lang Street). Attendees will hear from VDOT staff and have an opportunity to ask questions about the anticipated construction.

The roadwork on the three bridges at the interchange is anticipated to begin in April or May 2016, said Brian Morrison, a senior structural engineer with VDOT.

Construction is anticipated to last about four to six months, so the project is predicted to be finished in October or November of next year, Morrison said.

Roadwork on the bridges is expected to include repaving the bridge decks, guardrail improvements, reconstruction of bridge joints, painting bridge beams and fixing the sidewalks and curbs on Glebe Road. The total cost for the project is projected to be $4.7 million, according to VDOT.

The project is currently in its design phase. Once construction begins, there will likely be single-lane and shoulder closures during the night and day, according to VDOT’s website for the project.

by Heather Mongilio — July 10, 2015 at 11:30 am 822 0

Williamsburg Boulevard is scheduled for a construction project this fall as the county works to add rain gardens, more trees and new pedestrian crosswalks to the street.

A date for construction has not been set, but it should start in the fall and last three to five months, said Jessica Baxter, a spokeswoman for Arlington County.

The county may also hold off on some landscaping, tree planting and final paving until spring 2016 if the weather is bad in the fall, she said.

The road will remain open in both ways during construction, but the bicycle lanes will be closed. Pedestrians crosses will still be available.

The stretch of Williamsburg Boulevard is in a residential area, and the construction will only occur between 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays in order to reduce the noise level, Baxter said.

Once construction is completed, a newly paved Williamsburg Boulevard will have new curbs where it intersects with 33rd Road N. and 35th Street N., new crosswalks that are compliant with the American Disabilities Act and more canopy trees between 34th Street N. and 35th Street N.

The street will also have two rain gardens, which will help clean polluted runoff.

Canopy trees will also be added to the stretch of Williamsburg Boulevard between Old Dominion Drive and 33rd Road N.

Old Dominion Drive is currently under construction and the two projects are being coordinated to keep traffic delays to a minimum, Baxter said.

“Construction activities between the two projects will be coordinated to reduce traffic delays as much as possible. Drivers may experience some delays trying to access North Glebe Road from Williamsburg Boulevard, particularly after 9 a.m.,” she said.

Baxter said the exact cost of the project has not been determined.

“Construction plans are still being finalized, and the specific contracting mechanism for the bioretention component is still being determined,” she said. “At this time, the construction cost estimate for the project ranges from $600k to $700k. The County is fully funding the project with the majority of the funding coming from the Stormwater Fund.”

by Heather Mongilio — July 7, 2015 at 5:35 pm 1,492 0

(Updated on July 17 on 4:30 p.m.) Old Dominion Drive will undergo another round of road construction for the next 18-24 months as the county works to add sidewalks, street lights and traffic signals.

The roadwork will take place on Old Dominion between N. Glebe Road to 38th Street N., according to Jessica Baxter, a spokesperson for Arlington County’s Environmental Services.

One lane will remain open during construction, which will run from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday. No lanes will be closed during rush hour.

At the end of the project, Old Dominion Drive will be more pedestrian and cyclist friendly, Baxter said.

“Old Dominion Drive is the last arterial roadway located within an Arlington County neighborhood without sidewalks on either side,” Baxter said.

In addition to new sidewalks, the project will also add new street lights, updated curbs and gutters, a new stormwater system, updated traffic lights and updated transit stops. The total cost for the revamp of Old Dominion Drive is about $8.1 million, which is funded through a partnership with the Virginia Department of Transportation. Of the $8 million, $2.34 million will come from VDOT, Baxter said.

Construction started Monday and is expected to be completed fall of 2017, weather permitting. Orange construction signs are now in place along Old Dominion Drive.

This is the second phase of the county’s Old Dominion Project. The first phase, which cost about $1.24 million, consisted of similar road work from Lee Highway to N. Glebe Road and was finished in 2010.

Updates on the road project will be posted to the Arlington County website, and residents are encouraged to sign up for email alerts, which can be done on the webpage, Baxter said.

by Heather Mongilio — June 10, 2015 at 4:30 pm 1,826 0

Interchange between Interstate 395 and Boundary Channel Drive

Changes to the Boundary Channel Drive interchange with Interstate 395 and a new bike trail near Long Bridge Park are on the way.

Arlington residents will have a chance to offer feedback on new designs for the Boundary Channel Drive interchange project on Tuesday, June 23 at 6:30 p.m. The meeting will take place at the Aurora Hills Community Center (735 18th Street S.).

The project is primarily intended to improve safety at the interchange, which is located on I-395 between Crystal City and the Pentagon, said David Kirschner, an Arlington County project manager.

“In this area, Interstate 395 is the most congested roadway in our region,” Kirschner said in an email. “The goals of this project are to improve the operations of the interchange at Boundary Channel Drive and improve safety for all road users.”

The project is also seeking to expand pedestrian and cycling access to and from Washington, D.C., Crystal City, the Pentagon and Long Bridge Park through a new bike trail.

Bike Trail from Humpback Bridge to Long Bridge ParkThe trail is planned to connect Humpback Bridge to Long Bridge Park but has not been designed yet, Kirschner said. The proposed trail will go from the existing Mount Vernon Trail that connects to the underpass under Humpback Bridge and would extend to Boundary Channel Drive through the interchange that already exists.

“We’re definitely always trying to be more friendly to cyclists and pedestrians,” he said.

The new connection will make it easier to get to and from D.C. and the Pentagon, Kirschner said, adding that pedestrians currently have to do a lot of backtracking — via Crystal City or the LBJ Memorial Grove — to get into D.C.

As the project is still in its planning stages, the new trail has not yet been designed and which department will oversee the maintenance has not been determined. The trail’s planned path falls under multiple jurisdictions, as the National Park Service oversees the Mount Vernon Trail and Long Bridge Park is run by Arlington County.

“The need to keep the trail clean and safe will be an ongoing concern as we move forward in the design and construction of the Boundary Channel Drive interchange,” Kirschner said in an email.

In addition to the proposed bike trail, the project will look at a complete revamp of the interchange between I-395 and Boundary Channel Drive.

“Based on our analysis so far, the current four-lane roadway is overbuilt for current traffic. The traffic analysis we are performing will determine what lanes and ramps are needed for the final interchange in the future analysis year of 2036,” Kirschner said in the email.


by Heather Mongilio — June 10, 2015 at 10:45 am 1,568 0

Map of GW Parkway that will have repairs.The National Park Service will begin a repair project on the GW Parkway between Reagan National Airport and Interstate 395 on June 15, causing traffic delays in both directions.

Ramps to the 14th Bridge and on and off GW Parkway are also affected by the construction.

Single-lane closures will occur in both directions between 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Two-lane closures are expected between 7 p.m. and 5:30 a.m. The lane closures are expected to cause delays.

NPS will work to minimize disruptions to travelers using Reagan National Airport.

Construction is anticipated to be finished by mid-December 2015, barring any inclement weather delays.

“Every effort will be made to minimize traffic delays and accomplish the work in a timely manner. The NPS regrets any inconvenience and appreciates all motorists’ understanding and patience,” NPS said.

Photo via Google Maps


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