May 10, 2006 Minutes - Trails and Sidewalks Committee

Minutes of the Fairfax County Trails and Sidewalks Committee Meeting

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Members Present- Allan Jones (Braddock), Bruce Wright (Hunter Mill), Peter Christensen (Mount Vernon), Roger Diedrich (Providence), Roy S. Brooks (Mason), Dennis Frew (WABA), Dan Iglhaut (NVRPA), Jenny Pate (FCPA), Gregory J. Galligan (At-Large), Ann P. Pimley (FADSB)

Staff Present- Sheng Leu (DPZ), Jaak Pedak (DOT), Janet Shaw Leavitt (DPWES)

Guests- Kathryn L. Smith (Office of Equity Programs),

I. Call to Order – Bruce Wright called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.

II. Approval of Meeting Minutes for April 12, 2006 – Minutes approved unanimously.

III. Transportation Plan Update Status

Jaak Pedak, Transportation Planner, Fairfax County Department of Transportation, updated the Committee on the pending revisions to the County’s Transportation Plan. The Planning Commission public hearing was May 4, 2006 and the Board of Supervisors public hearing is scheduled for June 5, 2006. Bruce noted that he addressed the Planning Commission regarding the Committee’s comments on the plan.

Mr. Pedak handed out the Transportation Plan map to the Committee and noted that current products related to the plan include the map, the Policy Plan (a clean version and a strike-through version) that now includes a glossary, a public input and response report, and a report on travel demand forecasting. He noted that TAC members worked on the effort as well and that the information is on the County’s website, including a staff report with appendices, and a summary table of revisions to the Plan (hard copies of the documents can be obtained from Mr. Pedak 703-324-1171).

He noted that there were several speakers at the Planning Commission hearing and a May 25, 2006 meeting is scheduled for the Planning Commission to make revisions prior to the BOS hearing. Committee discussion followed including how the Committee’s comments on the Plan focused on integration of non-motorized and motorized transportation, the fact that there is a separate Transportation Plan and Trails Plan, the possibility of having updated to both plans occur concurrently in the future, and the possibility of having one map for motorized and non-motorized transportation. It was noted that the public input and response report demonstrated the strong desire by residents for bicycle and pedestrian facilities in the County.

IV. Staff Reports

DPWES- Janet Shaw Leavitt of the Code Analysis Division, Office of Site Development Services, briefed the Committee on updates to the County’s Public Facilities Manual. She noted that improvements are being made to the PFM amendment process including vetting revisions through appropriate parities including the Committee prior to adoption of changes. Ms. Leavitt discussed changes to the PFM that were adopted by the BOS in November 2005, including requirements for subdivision sidewalks that include a sidewalk on both sides of the street for subdivisions with lots averaging less than 18,000 square feet, sidewalks on one side for lots averaging 18,000 square feet to 52,000 square feet and sidewalks on one side for subdivisions containing lots greater than 52,000 square feet when the subdivision is located in proximity to a school.

Currently under consideration are requirements for sidewalks on both sides of the street for subdivisions with lots averaging up to 25,000 square feet, adding a requirement for proposed schools instead of existing schools only (there are five schools proposed in the CIP), and requiring sidewalks on both sides of cul-de-sacs. She noted that there is also discussion of requiring sidewalks for subdivisions with lots of 52,000 square feet and larger, regardless of its proximity to a school. Committee discussion followed including the need to vet future changes through effected groups including the Committee; the issue of older, recorded subdivisions being exempted from the sidewalk requirements; and the many inconsistencies between the Trails Plan and the PFM, including the minor/major paved trail designations and that on-road bicycle routes are not addressed in the PFM.

Jenny noted that she may have this information already compiled for the out-of-turn plan amendment. Ms. Leavitt suggested that further discussion on this issue take place with Chris Wells and staff will investigate revising the PFM for consistency with the Trails Plan. The Committee generally supported the changes under consideration; however, the Committee concurred that further discussion is needed that includes members who were not present.

DPZ- Sheng Leu reported that on May 1, 2006 the BOS authorized a CIP transportation bond referendum for 2007 in the amount of $100,000,000. He also reported that 100 to 200 copies of the existing trails map are being printed and the updated maps should be available by the end of this year or early next year. He distributed a handout “Guidelines for Determining Recommendation for Trails Waiver Application,” which the Committee agreed to discuss at a future meeting. The BOS has approved a bicycle coordinator position for FY 2007 and $375,000 for a bicycle plan and map.

V. Chair Report

Bruce Wright reported on the transportation bond referendum and stressed the importance of the Committee prioritizing its projects given the pending referendum. A Committee discussion followed that included the need for public outreach related to trails/sidewalks and the referendum. Jenny noted that there will be a park bond referendum this fall in the amount of $25,000,000. Bruce also reported that Allan Jones is resigning from the Committee. Allan reported that his last meeting will be the June meeting and that Brent Reynolds-- who worked with Allan on the Braddock District task force on the Transportation Plan update-- will be his replacement.

VI. New Business

Jenny reported on the success of the Cross County Trail’s Trailfest held on May 6, 2006 and encouraged Committee members to visit the trail. She noted that the CCT is now open in Laurel Hill.

VII. Old Business

Bruce reported that Bike to Work Day is May 19, 2006 and pit stops will be open at the Fairfax County Government Center, Reston Town Center, Vienna (at Whole Foods/W&OD), University Mall (which is a new stop this year), and Tysons Corner (at Booz Allen).

VIII. Adjournment – 9:12 p.m.

Next meeting is June 14, 2006, Recorder is Roy Brooks.

Meeting minutes submitted by Dan Iglhaut.


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