Archive: Traffic

Water Main Break in Falls Church

A news release from the city: UPDATE: Eastbound Route 7 Closed in Falls Church City for Water Main Break Repairs; Southbound Route 29 Reduced to One Lane. FALLS CHURCH, VA. - Eastbound route 7 in Falls Church City is closed between Maple Avenue and Washington Street as crews repair a 6-inch water main break at the intersection of routes 7 and 29. Traffic is being detoured onto Maple Avenue, to Annandale Road, and to South Washington Street (route 29). Southbound route 29 is reduced to one lane. The closures will remain in effect until approximately 6 p.m. The break occurred at approximately 10:20 a.m. Tuesday, June 17 when a commercial truck struck a fire hydrant, which in turn broke the water main. Service has been restored to water customers affected by the break....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 17, 2008; 01:06 PM ET | Email a Comment

No Go on Red Light Cameras Yet

More than 14 months after the use of red light photo enforcement cameras were again approved for use by the Commonwealth, none of the Northern Virginia localities that had lobbied for their use have begun using them. Find out why in this article from today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 5, 2008; 04:16 PM ET | Email a Comment

Weekend Beltway Delays Ahead at Wilson Bridge

Weekend travellers may want to avoid the Beltway's outer loop in Virginia between Springfield and the Woodrow Wilson Bridge. Work on the bridge will force lane closures and is expected to snarl traffic. Find out more in this Metro section article....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 8, 2008; 11:46 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 3/27: Ruling Against Regional Tranportation Fund Spells Trouble For Belvoir Road Plan

Updated 3/27 According to an article in today's Fairfax Extra, the ruling by Virginia Supreme Court against a regional tax plan to fund transportation improvements, one of the big losers will be the plan to improve roads and ease congestion around the fort. The decision eliminates $12.1 million the state planned to spend on the project. Updated 5/18/07 Responding to an amendment proposed by Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.), the House of Representatives passed a bill that would require transportation improvements be made before the U.S. Army would be allowed to move 22,000 jobs to Fort Belvoir. The story is here. Originally posted 2/8 Amid concerns about what an influx of 21,00 new personnel at Fort Belvoir could do to complicate traffic and other problems around the Army base, local congressional leaders are asking federal officials delay the base realignment process. They say that the additional time will allow needed preparation...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 27, 2008; 10:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 2/29: Army Narrows BRAC Alternatives

Updated 2/29 Two Alexandria locations and the General Services location in Springfield are still in the running to get the jobs moving from Fort Belvoir. Read the latest in this article from this week's Fairfax Extra. Updated 12/17 An article on with more details and analysis of what local and regional changes can be expected be of BRAC shuffles was in yesterday's Metro section. Updated 11/30 The latest on the increasingly stiff competition to lure the jobs originally planned for Fort Belvoir is in this story from today's Metro section. Updated 10/11 The plan to shift some BRAC jobs from Fort Belvoir jobs to Springfield is facing a challenge from a private property owner of 16 acres along Eisenhower Avenue in Alexandria. Lee District Supervisor T. Dana Kauffman (D) calls the Alexandria proposal a "rigged deal." Read about it in this article from today's front page. Updated 8/27 The neighborhoods...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 29, 2008; 09:35 AM ET | Email a Comment

Ice Plays Havoc on Springfield Interchange

Icy roads at the Springfield Interchange during Tuesday's evening rush hour led to snarled traffic and accidents like this one on the Franconia road overpass next to Springfield Mall. (JOHN MCDONNELL - THE WASHINGTON POST) Of all the areas where traffic was affected by Tuesday's winter storm, none was more so than the Springfield Interchange where there were numerous accidents and traffic was at a virtual standstill for hours. Read this article from today's Metro section. Were you stuck in the traffic? Share your stories and impressions of the situation. If this problem can be prevented from happening again for half a million dollars, will it be money well spent?...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 14, 2008; 10:36 AM ET | Email a Comment

Money Set For New Turn Lane on Route 7

Plans are moving forward to build a second turn left turn from eastbound Route 7 on to Georgetown Pike, to keep traffic from backing up on Leesburg Pike. But not everyone is convinced the fix will be a good thing; local residents along Georgetown Pike fear that means more traffic for them. Read about it in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 24, 2008; 12:30 PM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE: Commuters Should Prepare for 'Dynamic Tolling'

Updated 1/10 That's bureacratese for the practice of charging more to use the soon-to-come HOT lanes on the Capital Beltway when traffic is heavier. Read more about how the system will work in today's Fairfax Extra. Updated 9/20 Local drivers offer their opinions about the merits of the new toll lanes and whether they would be likely to use them in this article from today's Fairfax Extra. Originally published 9/10 Getting used to the now-opened Mixing Bowl? Well, there's more. A formal announcement about the construction and operation of the express toll lanes scheduled to begin construction next spring on the Beltway near Tysons Corner is coming today. This article from this morning's paper has the details. And there will be more public money involved in the project, whose price tag is growing. Thoughts?...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 10, 2008; 11:06 AM ET | Email a Comment

I-395 HOV Enforcement Coming In January

For 25 years southbound Interstate 395 commuters have been able to use a stretch of the highway's high occupancy vehicle lanes on the approach to Springfield whether they were carpooling or not. With the new Springfield Interchange open for business and much of the congestion in the area alleviated, that era is coming to an end. Beginning Jan. 14, HOV enforcement will resume and cars caught driving in the lanes between 3:30 and 6 p.m. with fewer than three occupants will be ticketed. Read more in this story from today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 20, 2007; 11:33 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 7/19: It's Done!

Updated 7/19 Governor Kaine and VDOT want the the success of the Springfield Interchange Project to be replicated in other current and future construction efforts. Coverage of yesterday's dedication ceremony is here. Originally posted 7/18 The Springfield Interchange is complete and a dedication ceremony is set for today. Coverage is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | July 18, 2007; 07:16 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tysons Traffic "War Room" Under Consideration

If you think Tysons Corner traffic is bad now, you might not have seen anything yet. In response to an anticipated worsening of traffic as construction on Metrorail and other major projects begin in the area, the county is exploring the idea of a "war room" to coordinate solutions to the problems that will inevitably arise. The story is in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 28, 2007; 12:48 PM ET | Email a Comment

Rail Plan May Quash Potential to Remake Tysons

Critics of the overhead rail plan in Tysons Corner have long said that building the Metrorail extension on elevated tracks may ruin any chance to create a walkable, bikeable downtown for the area. According to this story from today's Metro Section, that's entirely likely since the plan will eliminate any chance of remaking the cloverleaf interchange where routes 7 and 123 come together, effectively dividing Tysons Corner....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | June 27, 2007; 10:21 AM ET | Email a Comment

Immigration and Overcrowded Houses

This front page article in yesterday's paper on neighborhood disputes over overcrowded houses in Fairfax County has spawned a spirited discussion with people from Fairfax, the Washington region and elsewhere in the country, joining in by posting comments about the problem. Focus on Fairfax invites readers to continue the discussion here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | May 14, 2007; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

Local Road Fixes on the Way

Small local road fixes are being planned throughout the Northern Virginia over the next few years as state transportation officials begin to shift their focus away from nearly completed large projects such as the Springfield Interchange and the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge. The cumulative effect of many small fixes may have a big impact, officials say. The news is in this morning's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 30, 2007; 10:13 AM ET | Email a Comment

Two-Wheeling in Tysons: Is There a Future for It?

One of the things local officials want to know as they prepare to remake Tysons Corner is, how can they make it easier for bicyclists to get around? To that end a group of cyclists took to the streets in Tysons on Saturday to find out just how bad it is and how much will have to be done to make the corridor bike-friendly. The story was in yesterday's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 23, 2007; 10:43 AM ET | Email a Comment

HOT Lane Operators Promise to Keep Traffic Moving

The private companies planning to build and operate high-occupancy toll lanes on Interstates 395 and 95 say they will take the necessary steps to keep the lanes moving at a minimum of 55 miles per hour, even during the morning and evening rush hours. The story is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 18, 2007; 10:16 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tysons Traffic Unfunded for Upcoming Construction

According to this article from today's Metro section, despite two major construction projects set to begin within a year, state transportation officials have yet to set aside any cash for the management of traffic through Tysons Corner during that time....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 10, 2007; 08:42 AM ET | Email a Comment

Arlington, PW Residents Question Road Project Benefits

Fairfax County is smack dab in the middle of two potential showdowns over long-planned road projects: Building high-occupancy toll lanes along Interstate 95/395 and widening Interstate 66 inside the Capital Beltway. Read about the opposition to the plans by people in Prince William and Arlington Counties in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | April 5, 2007; 04:49 PM ET | Email a Comment

Move of Korean Mega Church Concerns Centreville Res.

Some people in Centreville say they fear the traffic and environmental impacts that Korean Central Presbyterian Church's move from Vienna will bring. But some residents say they are uncomfortable with the growing immigrant population in the area. The story was in yesterday's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 12, 2007; 09:14 AM ET | Email a Comment

Veto of Red-Light Cameras Urged

From today's Metro section: The Fairfax County Privacy Council is urging Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) to veto legislation that would allow communities with 10,000 or more residents to install cameras to catch drivers who run red lights. A red light camera in use at Chainbridge Rd and Lee Highway during the 2005 pilot program. (Larry Morris) The red-light camera program would replace an experiment that ended in 2005 in Alexandria, Fairfax City, Falls Church, Vienna and Virginia Beach and Arlington and Fairfax counties. Safety advocates say red light cameras reduce accidents and aggressive driving, but privacy groups have raised concerns about personal liberties. In an e-mail alert sent to members and supporters yesterday, the Fairfax privacy group said red-light cameras violate the rights of drivers and contribute to rear-end collisions. -- Eric M. Weiss...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 9, 2007; 10:08 AM ET | Email a Comment

Route 1 Detours Set For This Weekend

Woodrow Wilson Bridge project officials say drivers should try to steer clear of the Route 1 interchange this weekend, particularly on Richmond Highway itself as crew finish work on a Beltway-spanning bridge. Details are in today's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | March 1, 2007; 10:35 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax News Briefs

From today's Metro section: Police Arrest Suspect in Several Robberies A District man has been charged with an armed robbery in Fairfax County last month and is being investigated in a string of similar holdups, including two in which the gunman fired shots inside the businesses. Police arrested James Rose, of the 3400 block of Fifth Street SE, on Saturday at an apartment in Annandale. He was charged with the Jan. 31 robbery of a 7-Eleven in the Hybla Valley area, which was captured on video that shows a masked man wielding a long-barreled gun. Police said Rose was also a suspect in the Jan. 18 robberies of Chin's Kitchen and Huntington Market in the Huntington area and the Jan. 14 robbery of a Sunoco gas station in the Hybla Valley area. -- Tom Jackman Man Killed While Trying to Cross Route 1 A man trying to walk across Route...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 27, 2007; 10:17 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 2/28: Another Road Rage Case Involving "Missile."

Updated 2/28 The victim in the incident said in this article from today's Metro section that there is more to the story and that coffee throwing wasn't the worst of it. Originally posted 2/27 Keep your cups and glasses inside the vehicle at all times. Virginia's law regarding "missiles" hurled from vehicles is in the news again today after a conflict between motorists escalated into coffee throwing at a Chantilly area intersection. Allan Tat Le, of South Riding, was charged with one felony count of unlawfully throwing a missile at an occupied vehicle. It brings up an interesting topic for conversation: Road Rage. We all have probably felt it to at least a small degree at some point, if not in whopping daily doses. How do Focus on Fairfax readers cope with their own stress levels while negotiating the region's traffic messes? Why aren't missiles more regularly launched? And please...

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 27, 2007; 10:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

Proposal To Widen I-66 Draws Fire

The first of three public forums on changes proposed for a portion of Interstate 66 inside the Beltway took place last week. Based on the reporting from this Fairfax Extra article, many people remain skeptical of the idea....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 1, 2007; 03:56 PM ET | Email a Comment

Travel Habits under Scrutiny to Combat Congestion

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments is planning to survey 10,000 randomly selected area households to get a deeper look at how we organize our travel. The goal is to better determine how best to combat congestion on the region's roads. The Fairfax Extra has the story....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | February 1, 2007; 03:39 PM ET | Email a Comment

State Lawmakers Aware of Voters' Ire Over Traffic

Virginia's state Delegates and Senators say they are acutely aware of how transportation and growth problems are fueling voter dissatisfaction in the Commonwealth and the potential political consequences they face if they fail to address the issues. The story was in yesterday's Metro section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | January 8, 2007; 10:49 AM ET | Email a Comment

Pacts to Limit Traffic Around Developments Go Unmet

This article looks at how, despite extracting agreements to provide incentives to reduce traffic around new developments, Fairfax ofiicials have been largely unsuccessful in holding developers and employers to their word....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 29, 2006; 10:42 AM ET | Email a Comment

Report: School Bus System Taxed to Limit

According to a consultant's report, officials with Fairfax County schools need to make changes soon to the way the school bus system is run if the system is to handle increasing traffic congestion . Read about it in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 21, 2006; 11:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

Wreck the Road With Miles of Gridlock

Office workers in Tysons Corner have come to dread the annual holiday shopping season and how it exacerbates the already miserable traffic in the area. Read about how some of them are coping in this article from today's Business section....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | December 18, 2006; 10:58 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 12/1: Army Moves Planned Museum Site

Updated 12/1 According to this article from this morning's Metro section, the Army will bow to pressure from elected officials who were concerned about the museum's traffic impact and move the site from the Engineer Proving Ground to Fort Belvoir itself. Updated 11/9 Army officials are quoted in this article as saying that the National Museum of the Army near Ft. Belvoir is very much part of their future plans. strong>Updated 8/9 Now the Army is characterizing the theme park proposal as DOA, but a museum is till on the table. The latest is here. Originally posted 8/8 U.S. Army officials are considering a developer's proposal to create a military theme park, hotel and entertainment district near Fort Belvoir. The plan is billed as possibly drawing a million tourists a year. The Post's story is here. There are 22,000 new jobs coming to the fort and triggering new traffic concerns....

 

By | December 1, 2006; 09:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Mixing Bowl Ramp Opens Next Week

Experienced Capital Beltway travelers know it well--the long back-up in the right lanes of the outer loop of I-495 leading to the ramp to I-95 south. Some approach the ramp with dread. According to this article in today's Metro section the latest phase of the Springfield interchange project to be completed is expected to have a dramatic positive effect at reducing afternoon congestion and accidents at the location....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 29, 2006; 10:19 AM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 11/9: VDOT: Dulles Area Development A No Go

Updated 11/9 The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors yesterday rejected the proposal to build the development. The story is here. Updated 8/30 According to this article from today's Metro section, the plan to develop the new homes is gathering momentum. Updated 7/21 According to this story strong criticism is being levelled at both the development plan and the VDOT traffic study. Originally posted 7/14 A planned development of 28,000 new houses in Loudoun County will lead to massive traffic tie-ups on local roads from Herndon to Haymarket according to what officials from the Virginia Department of Transportation have to say in this article in today's Metro section....

 

By | November 9, 2006; 09:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

County Wants Trucks Banned From 193

Citing safety concerns on a winding eight-mile stretch of Route 193 through Great Falls, the county Board of Supervisors is asking VDOT to ban heavy trucks fro using the road. The Post's article is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | November 3, 2006; 10:59 AM ET | Email a Comment

Beltway HOT Lanes Could Require $100 Million in Public Funds

Rising cost estimates for the plan to build express toll lanes on a 14 mile stretch of the Beltway now has the plan's private backers saying they won't be able to do it alone. Read about it in this front page article from today's Washington Post....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | October 23, 2006; 09:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

720 Apartments for Dunn Loring Metro Area?

About 720 new apartment units would be built on what is currently a 15 acre parking lot according to this article. The proposal comes before the county planning commission this fall....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 11, 2006; 10:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Tonight's Rush Hour and Football: Expect Backups.

With the Redskins playing their opening game tonight at 7 p.m., local officials are anticipating a tough commute tonight on the area highways with back-ups potentially extending five miles from the Woodrow Wilson Bridge in Fairfax County. The story is here....

 

By Focus on Fairfax | September 11, 2006; 10:42 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax 2nd Richest County in Nation; Loudoun 1st

Our neighbors in Loudoun. Together with Howard, Montgomery and Prince William counties, Loudoun and Fairfax combine to make the Washington suburbs the wealthiest of any major metropolitan area in the U.S. And the federal money that has flowed into local economies for defense and homeland security in the wake of 9/11 plays a big part. The Post's front page story is here. But all those jobs come with a dark side according to this companion A1 article that says Washington's outer suburbs are home to commuters with the second-longest daily drives in the U.S....

 

By | August 30, 2006; 10:53 AM ET | Email a Comment

Wrathful Commuters: Want to Destroy Wilson Bridge?

Updated 8/30 With remains of the old bridge now being dismantled work on the second span in getting started. The story is here. Originally posted 8/10 Unlike Col. Nicholson (Alec Guinness) in "The Bridge on the River Kwai" the winner of the the Wilson Bridge project's contest to demolish the Wilson Bridge won't have to take any shrapnel in the effort. (Photo Copyright 1957 Columbia Pictures Corporation) Ever wanted to blow up the Woodrow Wilson Bridge? You now have a chance to make your dream reality. Wilson Bridge project officials have announced a contest in which the winner will get to trigger the explosive charge that will destroy a half mile section of the old bridge at midnight Aug. 24. All you have to do is come up with the most compelling story of misery and woe caused by the bridge. The Post's article is here....

 

By | August 30, 2006; 10:31 AM ET | Email a Comment

Gridlock Tips: Headed to the Beach For Labor Day?

Dr. Gridlock and his readers offer some suggestions....

 

By | August 24, 2006; 12:24 PM ET | Email a Comment

UPDATE 8/23: Mixing Bowl Nearly Unmixed

Updated 8/23 The lead story in today's Metro takes another look at the mixing bowl on this, the eve of the the project's last major bridge opening. Originally posted 8/17 With work on the Springfield Interchange entering its final year and the major work scheduled to be completed by next month, VDOT officials say that end is in sight. Fairfax Extra coverage is here....

 

By | August 23, 2006; 10:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Bigger Questions on Tysons Redevelopment/Rail

With all of the the discussion about the specifics of extending Metrorail through Tysons Corner and redeveloping the area into a walkable downtown for Fairfax County, are some bigger questions getting overlooked? Is the plan to remake Tysons feasible? Is it even desirable? This article from yesterday's Metro section takes a closer look at the big questions local officials face as decision time on what to do draws near....

 

By | August 21, 2006; 10:13 AM ET | Email a Comment

Danger On the W&OD Trail?

According to a front page article from this morning, increased usage of the historic Washington & Old Dominion Trail is choking the pathway, leading to increased danger for bicyclists pedestrians and other users. Three bicyclists have died on the trail in the last year....

 

By | August 18, 2006; 10:45 AM ET | Email a Comment

TRAFFIC ALERT: Fairfax City Goes Two-Way

Here is what to expect courtesy of yesterday's Fairfax Extra. The change was subject of the July 20 Fairfax Extra cover story....

 

By | August 4, 2006; 09:21 AM ET | Email a Comment

8/3 UPDATE: Army Ft. Belvoir Plan Draws Critics

Updated 8/3 From today's Metro section: Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.) will hold a hearing this month to question the Army about its plans for transferring 22,000 employees to Fort Belvoir, a member of his staff told Army leaders yesterday. "He has a lot of concerns," Davis aide Bill Womack said. "There are too many moving parts to not take a closer look at this." Womack's comments came at a meeting at the post of an advisory board formed by the post commander to gather comments on the Army's plans. The Army announced last week that it is planning to cluster most of the relocated employees at the Engineer Proving Ground, a mostly vacant site a couple of miles northwest of the main post. The plans have come under criticism from state and local officials who were hoping the Army would disperse the new workers more, on the main...

 

By | July 28, 2006; 10:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

Traffic Changes for Downtown Fairfax

Will converting two busy one way streets in the city's core to two way traffic.turn out well or contribute to congestion and confusion? City leaders and business owners disagree. While city planners say the change is an integral part of the ongoing downtown revitalization project, some merchants say they fear that changes will discourage customers who will be facing new traffic patterns and changing parking locations. Like it or not, changes are coming on or about Aug. 5. Read about what the two sides are saying and what the changes entail in today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By | July 20, 2006; 11:29 AM ET | Email a Comment

HOV Hybrid Exemption in the Rear View Mirror

This story from today's Fairfax Extra explains how Virginia's effort to get drivers to buy low-polluting cars by offering an exemption from HOV rules was undone by its own success. Hybrids purchased after June 30 are no longer exempt from HOV restrictions on Interstates 95 and 295. Next year the exemptions will be stripped for hybrids on other state highways....

 

By | July 20, 2006; 11:04 AM ET | Email a Comment

Dangerous Drivers Targeted; Does It Do Good?

This happens every time a holiday comes up, and the population of speeders and aggressive drivers just seems to grow. Will this time help? Today's Metro section reports that 90 law enforcement agencies in Virginia, Maryland, the District of Columbia and Pennsylvania will be targeting speeders and aggressive drivers this summer as part of the Smooth Operator Program. The public safety program steps up enforcement in four-week waves when officers are redeployed to target areas where violations are most frequent....

 

By | June 23, 2006; 11:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Wilson Bridge Span = Traffic Backups

Today's Fairfax Extra, reports motorists find the new Wilson Bridge span causes more traffic tie-ups than the old one. Is that possible? To those traveling to and from Virginia and Maryland over the Potomac River, the new bridge is in stark contrast to the old one. But looks aren't everythign. Traffic may get worse beforeit gets better. The next "stay away" weekend is from 8 p.m. Friday, July 14, to 5 a.m. Monday, July 17, when I-95 south traffic is scheduled to be switched to the new bridge....

 

By | June 22, 2006; 12:19 PM ET | Email a Comment

New Wilson Bridge Helping Rush Hour

Let us know if the reports are correct. Reports this morning indicate that traffic was moving well, if sometimes a bit slowly, across the first span of the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge. Read about the successful opening of the bridge in this article from this morning's Metro section....

 

By | June 12, 2006; 10:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

HOV Violators Target of Police Crackdown

Anyone who flouts Virginia's rules for high occupancy vehicle lanes is the target in what police say will be an aggressive enforcement campaign. The story is in today's Metro section....

 

By | June 9, 2006; 10:15 AM ET | Email a Comment

Wilson Bridge Woes This Weekend

Stay away. That is the message from officials at the Woodrow Wilson Bridge project for drivers this weekend. The shifting of traffic from the old bridge to the first span of the new one could cause Beltway delays up to four hours and significant delays on other alternate routes. A story on what to expect is on the front page of today's Washington Post. For a 360 degree look at the bridge, look here....

 

By | June 8, 2006; 10:12 AM ET | Email a Comment

Parkway Widening, Carpool Lanes Proposed

From Saturday's Metro section: The Fairfax County Parkway would be widened from four lanes to six between Route 50 and the Dulles Toll Road under a proposal made by county officials that also calls for the possibility of restricting the additional lane to carpools. Fairfax officials said funds are available for design and environmental studies, but not construction. County officials will discuss the proposal from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Oak Hill Elementary School, 3210 Kinross Cir. in Herndon. A presentation by county staff at 6 p.m. will be followed by questions and answers. -- Bill Turque...

 

By | June 5, 2006; 11:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Beltway Closures This Weekend

Weekend travellers should check out this story for information on how the opening of the first span of the Woodrow Wilson bridge and other construction will affect traffic this and subsequent weekends....

 

By | June 2, 2006; 10:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

Contruction Delays Ahead For Summer

Construction Work on the Springfield interchange and the Woodrow Wilson Bridge are expected to contribute to significant traffic delays throughout the busy summer travel season, according to an article from today's Fairfax Extra....

 

By | May 25, 2006; 11:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Phone Service Offers Commuting Tips

Commuters along the Route 7-Dulles Toll Road- Dulles Greenway corridor can take advantage of a new phone service called TrafficFlex which will help them find the least congested routes. Read about it here....

 

By | May 22, 2006; 10:47 AM ET | Email a Comment

Meeting to Air Hunter Mill Road Plans

From today's Metro section: A consultant's suggestions for "traffic calming," traffic management and safety improvements for Hunter Mill Road in Fairfax County will be presented May 24 at a public meeting scheduled for 7 p.m. at Unity of Fairfax Church, 2854 Hunter Mill Rd. in Oakton. Some of the measures being considered by the consultant -- hired last year by the Northern Virginia Regional Commission -- include signs pointing out features of historic interest along Hunter Mill Road, roundabouts, trails along the roadway for pedestrians, cyclists and horses, along with crosswalks and markers for intersections of trails and the roadway. Hunter Mill Road is a rolling, scenic 7.2-mile minor arterial designated as a Virginia byway and eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks register. The road connects Route 123 to the south with Baron Cameron to the north....

 

By | May 18, 2006; 09:55 AM ET | Email a Comment

Mixing Bowl Woes Forecast for Weekends

The first of as many as eight weekends of nighttime work on the Springfield interchange is expected to bring some of the biggest traffic delays in the construction project's history. Details are here....

 

By | May 18, 2006; 09:37 AM ET | Email a Comment

Gala for New Wilson Bridge Span Set Next Week

Updated 5/19 Coverage of the gala opening is here. Updated 5/15 A look at the bridge project's future and past was the lead story in yesterday's Metro section. A graphic and photos were included. Originally posted 5/11 Officials are readying a celebration next week for the completion of the first span of the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge. Read about it here....

 

By | May 11, 2006; 10:58 AM ET | Email a Comment

Speed Control or Optical Illusion on Lee Chapel Rd?

A narrow bend on Lee Chapel Road where drivers routinely speed is a test site for new system of speed control based on creating an optical illusion that makes speeding drivers think they are travelling even faster than they are. Read about how it works here. Video is here....

 

By | May 4, 2006; 09:16 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax: The 2006 Guide

An Introduction To The Guide Trying to make sense of Fairfax? Join our club. To help newcomers learn and old-timers discover new possibilities, here's The Guide for 2006. We know how easy it is to get confused here, because there are about a million people -- more people than seven states have -- and trying to make sense of the governing machinery can be tricky. The local governments include those of the county and two cities, the City of Fairfax and the City of Falls Church, each with its own idiosyncrasies and treasures. What you'll find in these pages is our attempt to lead you to old favorites you had not thought of for a while or to what might become favorites. There's golfing and fishing and biking and walking, just to name a few leisure pursuits. If you have students in the family, there's a place within the county...

 

By | April 28, 2006; 09:51 AM ET | Email a Comment

Why Make A 77-Mile Daily Commute?

Read a front page story in today's Washington Post that follows a group of workers including carpenters and electricians who carpool daily from Luray, 77 miles to the west to work at George Mason University. The workers are long-time residents of small communities who find their livelihood in the Washington area....

 

By | April 25, 2006; 10:47 AM ET | Email a Comment

Crashes Caused By Distracted, Drowsy Drivers

Eighty percent of all vehicle crashes in the Washington area are caused by sleepy or distracted drivers according to a new study that is the subject of a front page story in this morning's Washington Post. The top distraction for drivers? Cell phones....

 

By | April 21, 2006; 10:05 AM ET | Email a Comment

Region's Traffic Woes Win Shrugs From Many Lawmakers

Caught (again) in traffic and wonder if rural lawmakers care? Try this quote from Del. Robert Hurt (R-Pittsylvania): "The way I look at it, it seems that it really is a huge amount of time, a huge amount of fuel people waste sitting in traffic in Northern Virginia. But that's not our issue." Read the entire article in this morning's Metro section....

 

By | March 13, 2006; 11:19 AM ET | Email a Comment

HOT Lanes Could Negate Beltway Improvements Planners Warn

An article in today's Metro section decribes better traffic flow on the Capital Beltway thanks to improvements in Springfield and near the entrance to the Dulles Toll Road. But could the construction of planned high-occupany toll lanes undo the improvements? Some transportation planners say another tangle of entrances and exits for HOT lanes could cause problems....

 

By | February 27, 2006; 11:23 AM ET | Email a Comment

Please Read: Rules Issued for Commenting on Fairfax Focus Blog

Some readers of this blog have recently raised questions about the role of The Washington Post in policing Fairfax Focus. I have deleted a few blog posts because they did not meet The Post's standards for fairness. For more clarity about how to play by the rules, Jim Brady, the executive editor of washingtonpost.com has posted a message explaining the rules for readers participating in the site's Live Online discussions, discussion forums and for posting comments on the company's blogs. The complete list of rules is here. --Steve Fehr, Fairfax Extra Editor...

 

By | February 17, 2006; 01:06 PM ET | Email a Comment

Walking May Be Hazardous To Your Health

Today's Fairfax Extra cover story looks at the perils of being a pedestrian in Fairfax County and what the government, planners and neighborhood leaders would like to do about them....

 

By | February 16, 2006; 11:50 AM ET | Email a Comment

Regional Traffic Study; A Picture of Sustained Misery

A front page story in theWashington Post says that although some of the local choke-points in Fairfax have improved somewhat, traffic in the region overall continues to overwhelm roads. An article in today's Metro section lists the region's top ten bottlenecks which include the evening rush in I-66 near Falls Church....

 

By | February 16, 2006; 09:57 AM ET | Email a Comment

Nighttime Beltway Delays Expected For Route 7 Bridge Repair

The following news release was issued today by VDOT: VDOT Begins Work on Route 7 Bridge over BeltwayNighttime detour begins mid-MarchOn February 17, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) will begin site preparation for the rehabilitation of the Route 7 bridge over the Capital Beltway (I-495) in Fairfax County.  During the seven-month repair project, motorists should expect delays between 9 p.m. and 4:30 a.m. Once construction swings into high-gear in mid-March, Beltway motorists heading to Route 7 towards Tysons Corner or Falls Church will be detoured to Route 123.   The I-495 northbound ramp to westbound Route 7 and the southbound I-495 ramp to eastbound Route 7 will be closed from 9 p.m. to 4:30 a.m....

 

By | February 15, 2006; 04:31 PM ET | Email a Comment

Get Road Updates By E-Mail

From today's Metro section: Motorists stuck in traffic can get real-time e-mail updates about road conditions from the Virginia Department of Transportation, the agency announced yesterday. The e-mail alerts are part of the state's 511 travel service, which provides up-to-the-minute information on weather conditions, road construction and traffic incidents as well as on lodging, food and gas. Drivers can sign up for the free service by going to http://www.511Virginia.org ....

 

By | February 14, 2006; 12:40 PM ET | Email a Comment

Annandale Pedestrian Dies from Injuries

From today's Metro section: An Annandale man who was struck by a car Friday evening on Little River Turnpike died yesterday from his injuries, Fairfax County police said. Thomas Edward Hope, 48, of the 4200 block of Conally Street tried to cross the 7400 block of Little River Turnpike near Annandale Road shortly before 7:30 p.m. and was hit by a 2000 Lincoln Continental driven by a 56-year-old Silver Spring woman, Officer Beth Funston said. Hope was taken to Inova Fairfax Hospital, where he died yesterday. Police do not believe alcohol or speed were factors in the crash, and no charges have been filed against the driver....

 

By | February 9, 2006; 10:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly: Fairfax Is At Build-Out

Board Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) told his colleagues today, "We're hardly doing any land use in Fairfax County." Connolly noted that there were only two public hearings scheduled today, the lowest he could remember in years. There was a time when there were 40 public hearings at a board meeting related to rezonings and other land use cases, he said. "We are at build out," Connolly said. Connolly generally was referring to the relative lack of land remaining for development. There are huge development projects underway or planned on existing land, especially the planned extension of rail to Dulles International Airport, one of the largest development projects in the county's history....

 

By Steve Fehr | January 23, 2006; 05:12 PM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax GOP Officials Want $300 Million For Local Roads

Today's Metro section has an article about the legislation the lawmakers intend to submit today....

 

By | January 20, 2006; 02:55 PM ET | Email a Comment

County Surpasses Telecommuter Goal

From today's Fairfax Extra: Fairfax County is the first jurisdiction to reach -- and then exceed -- a regional goal to have 20 percent of the eligible workforce telecommuting one day a week or more, county officials said. The 20 percent goal, set by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, was met by Fairfax by the end of last year, board Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) told the supervisors Monday. "Teleworking is an essential tool for improving the region's air quality," Connolly said in a news release. He pointed out that 1,000 county employees telecommuting an average of one day a week would save 1.8 million commuting miles and prevent 720,000 pounds of pollutants from entering the air by taking cars off the roads. Telework also is an important part of emergency preparedness efforts, officials said in the news release. It can provide continuity of operations in government and the...

 

By | January 12, 2006; 01:46 PM ET | Email a Comment

Pulte Faces Possible Fines If It Can't Cut Car Use at MetroWest

Under the proposed plan, Pulte Homes the project developer would have to prove a reduction of  47 percent of residential car trips and 25 percent of business car trips or face the penalties. Today's Metro section has the story. ...

 

By | January 11, 2006; 10:44 AM ET | Email a Comment

Mixing Bowl Improvements Among Area Traffic Fixes Ahead in 2006

Three new bridges, including one scheduled to open next week are, expected to open in 2006 as part of the major improvements being made to the Springfield Interchange.  Read about the various projects, including the first span of the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge, opening in June, in today's Metro section....

 

By | January 11, 2006; 10:33 AM ET | Email a Comment

Report: Area Roads More Crowded, But Safer

Despite increasing traffic, the numbers of crashes and fatalities have declined in Northern Virginia according to a report  from the Washington Regional Alcohol Program. An article was in today's Washington Post. The most recent numbers from local police departments are here....

 

By | January 5, 2006; 11:43 AM ET | Email a Comment

Connolly Says Density Near Transit Key To Easing Congestion

The Chairman's remarks to local business leaders are reported here....

 

By | December 22, 2005; 03:28 PM ET | Email a Comment

Negotiations For New Toll Lanes To Begin

From today's Metro section: The Virginia Department of Transportation announced it will formally open negotiations with a private company, Fluor-Transurban, to add toll lanes to a 56-mile stretch of interstates 95 and 395. If the two sides reach a deal, the company would add a third lane to the existing two high-occupancy vehicle lanes from the 14th Street Bridge to Dumfries and build two carpool lanes from Dumfries to Massaponax. Cars carrying three or more passengers, as well as buses, could travel the lanes for free. Others would pay a toll that would vary based on traffic conditions, with the company keeping some of the toll revenue. var technorati = new Technorati() ; technorati.setProperty('url','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/12/20/AR2005122001469_Technorati.html') ; technorati.article = new item('Metro','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/12/20/AR2005122001469.html','The U.S. Botanic Garden needs volunteers to lead children\'s activities, serve as tour guides or help with gardening.','') ; document.write( technorati.getDisplaySidebar() );...

 

By | December 21, 2005; 10:11 AM ET | Email a Comment

Warner Wants Wider I-66

In his final budget plan Gov. Mark R. Warner is asking for funds to widen part of westbound I-66 inside the Capital Beltway and to buy additional rail cars for the Virginia Railway Express, the Washington Post Metro section reported on Friday....

 

By | December 19, 2005; 10:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

Toll Increase Ahead on Dulles Greenway

The increases go into effect Jan.1 and are detailed here....

 

By | December 15, 2005; 03:04 PM ET | Email a Comment

What Does The Future Hold For Transportation In NoVa?

Michael D. Shear's Virginia Notebook column today looks at what might come of three separate transportation plans being advanced by Virginia pols....

 

By | December 15, 2005; 03:01 PM ET | Email a Comment

Plans For Route 7 Makeover To Be Revealed Tonight

A new vision for Route 7 through Tysons Corner will be revealed tonight when project managers hold a public hearing on extending Metro through the area. An article with details of the plans was in today's Metro section....

 

By | December 8, 2005; 10:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

New Route Through Fort Belvoir Gains Funding

The following news brief appeared in yesterday's Fairfax Extra: Congress has approved an additional $5 million for the design and construction of a replacement for Woodlawn Road through Fort Belvoir. The money was included in two spending bills that contain funds for other projects in the Fairfax area as well. var technorati = new Technorati() ; technorati.setProperty('url','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/23/AR2005112300805_Technorati.html') ; technorati.article = new item('in brief','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/23/AR2005112300805.html','Congress has approved an additional $5 million for the design and construction of a replacement for Woodlawn Road through Fort Belvoir.','') ; document.write( technorati.getDisplaySidebar() ); County and state officials are planning to replace Woodlawn Road, which the Army closed for security reasons along with a segment of Beulah Road after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The closing has led to traffic delays in southern Fairfax....

 

By | November 26, 2005; 10:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

Supervisor Kauffman Sends Letter To Davis On Vienna Metro Land Sale

Metro Board Chairman and Fairfax Supervisor T. Dana Kauffman's (D-Lee) letter to Rep. Thomas M. Davis (R-Va.) on Metro's decision to sell land near the Vienna Metro station to Pulte homes was published in the Fairfax Extra's "Voices of Fairfax" guest column this week....

 

By | November 25, 2005; 11:10 AM ET | Email a Comment

Plans Proceed To Widen I-66

Plans to widen parts of Interstate 66 inside the Capital Beltway are proceeding according to an article published yesterday in the Fairfax Extra. ...

 

By | November 25, 2005; 11:02 AM ET | Email a Comment

Supervisors Eye Limits On Nutley Street Parking

The county Board of Supervisors is asking the Virginia Department of Transportation to help Fairfax establish parking restrictions on Nutley Street between Arlington Boulevard and Lee Highway. Supervisor Linda Q. Smyth (D-Providence) asked the board to consider the restrictions in response to complaints from residents about commercial vehicles, such as trash and construction trucks, that have been parking along the east side of Nutley near the Pan Am Shopping Center. Smyth said the trucks were obstructing visibility. Board Chairman Gerald E. Connolly (D) said he has observed trash trucks parked along that stretch with trash in the truck, which he said is illegal....

 

By | November 25, 2005; 10:49 AM ET | Email a Comment

Metro Approves MetroWest Land Sale To Pulte

Metro's board of directors has approved a sale of a parcel of land near the Vienna Metro station to Pulte Homes. The land lies between the station and land Pulte owns for its planned MetroWest mini-city development. Pulte officials described the land as an essential additional parcel if MetroWest is to be a true transit-oriented development. The full story was in this morning's Metro section....

 

By | November 18, 2005; 09:36 AM ET | Email a Comment

Wolf Asks Feds Help on Route 7 Traffic Lights

Rep. Frank Wolf (R) today asked the Federal Highway Administration to review the Virginia Department of Transportation's efforts to synchronize in real time the traffic signals on Route 7 from Leesburg to Tysons Corner....

 

By Steve Fehr | November 7, 2005; 05:28 PM ET | Email a Comment

Just Released: Traffic Pattern Change In Old Town Fairfax

The Fairfax City community relations office today issued the following statement: A new traffic pattern will allow vehicles to turn into Old Town Fairfax during non-rush hour. Effective immediately, southbound traffic on Route 123 (Chain Bridge Road) will be allowed to turn left from the left lane onto Route 236 (Main Street) daily except from 4-7 p.m. Monday through Friday.  For information, call 703-385-7846....

 

By | November 1, 2005; 04:55 PM ET | Email a Comment

Frank Wolf: Slow Traffic on Route 7

The congressman's office today released a statement containing the text of a letter that Wolf sent to the Virginia secratary of transportation.....

 

By | November 1, 2005; 03:45 PM ET | Email a Comment

Recommendation on Proposals For Mixing Bowl HOT Lanes Expected Today

VDOT has issued a press release on the meeting of the advisory board overseeing the issue which will be held from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Nov. 1, in the Springfield Interchange Project Office, 6400 Commerce Street, Springfield. Update 11/2: The results of the meeting were reportded in a Metro section article this morning....

 

By | November 1, 2005; 11:06 AM ET | Email a Comment

Organized Opposition To Development In Fairfax

A front page article from this morning's Washington Post gives prominent play to the recent efforts of citizens to organize themselves to oppose what they view as unfair development practices in Fairfax County. See it here....

 

By | October 14, 2005; 09:54 AM ET | Email a Comment

Hunter Mill Rd. Traffic Report Out Friday

From a news release today: The Hunter Mill Road Traffic Calming Committee will hold a press conference at 1 p.m. Fri. Oct. 14 at the W&OD Trail where it crosses Hunter Mill Road. The adjacent cross street is Hunter Station Rd. The purpose of the press conference is to announce the release of a summary report completed by the committee and to announce the commencement of the engineering next steps in the Hunter Mill Road Traffic Calming project....

 

By Steve Fehr | October 13, 2005; 01:31 PM ET | Email a Comment

Detours Tonight On I-395

The northbound lanes of Interstate 395 at Springfield will be closed tonight, Saturday night and Monday night so workers can position steel beams on bridges that are part of the Springfield interchange project. var technorati = new Technorati() ; technorati.setProperty('url','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/14/AR2005091402479_Technorati.html') ; technorati.article = new item('Metro','http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/14/AR2005091402479.html','The northbound lanes of Interstate 395 at Springfield will be closed tonight, Saturday night and Monday night so workers can position steel beams on bridges that are part of the Springfield interchange project.','') ; document.write( technorati.getDisplaySidebar() ); The lanes will be closed tonight from 9:30 p.m. to 4 a.m. tomorrow; from 8:30 p.m. Saturday to 10 a.m. Sunday; and from 9:30 p.m. Monday to 4 a.m. Tuesday....

 

By | September 15, 2005; 11:29 AM ET | Email a Comment

Meet MetroWest's Main Man

Today's Metro section has a profile of Stan Settle Jr., the Pulte Homes executive who is leading the company's effort to develop the high-density, mixed use MetroWest community next to the Vienna Metro station....

 

By | September 12, 2005; 11:00 AM ET | Email a Comment

Fairfax City Postpones Downtown Switch to Two Way Traffic

Fairfax City officials announced today that they will delay plans to convert Main and North Streets to two-way traffic until next summer to avoid potential conflicts with other ongoing construction efforts related to the downtown redevelopment project.  ...

 

By | September 9, 2005; 11:30 AM ET | Email a Comment

Shirley Highway Closures Planned This Weekend

Construction work on the Springfield interchange this weekend is scheduled to close part of Interstate 395 north, the Virginia Department of Transportation said. Motorists who do not need local exits north of the Capital Beltway are encouraged to use the HOV lanes, which will be open to all drivers, VDOT spokesman Steve Titunik said yesterday. Others will have to take a seven-mile detour through Van Dorn Street and Eisenhower Avenue, onto the inner loop of the Beltway, he said. The lanes on I-395 will close from 8:30 p.m. tomorrow to 10 a.m. Sunday. Crews will put up two steel beams that will help support the flyover linking Interstate 95 north to the Beltway's outer loop, Titunik said. More closures are expected in coming weeks as workers raise the remaining beams....

 

By | September 9, 2005; 10:17 AM ET | Email a Comment

Charge Tolls on Beltway, I-66, I-395, Says Former Gov. Baliles

Former governor Gerald A Baliles (D) has proposed a plan that would put tolls on the Capital Beltway, Interstate 66 and the Shirley Highway (Interstate 395) to generate income to help fund needed Virginia transportation projects. The story was inside today's Metro section....

 

By | September 1, 2005; 10:01 AM ET | Email a Comment

Nighttime Construction Delays Ahead On I-66

Beginning tonight, delays of up to an hour on Interstate 66 near Manassas are expected most nights over the next two months, which no doubt will affect Fairfax County drivers. Details of what drivers can expect were published in this morning's Metro section....

 

By | August 29, 2005; 10:28 AM ET | Email a Comment

 

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