November 10, 2004 Minutes - Trails and Sidewalks Committee

Non-motorized Transportation Committee Meeting

Members Attending: Bruce Wright (Hunter Mill District), Kevin Brugman (Mt Vernon District), Robert Michie (Lee District), Michael Brennan (Braddock District), Dan Iglhaut (NVRPA), Mike Shannon (Springfield District), Jenny Pate (FCPA), Paul Johnson (NVBIA), Mary Flowers, (Clifton Horse Society), Wade Smith (Dranesville District), Rebecca Cate (FCFCA)

Staff Attending: Sheng Leu (DPZ), Mimi Murray (DOT), Ahmed Rayyan (DPWES)

Guests Attending: M. Hunter McCleary, a bicycle commuter from Vienna

I. Call to order - Chairman Bruce Wright called the meeting to order at 7:35 p.m.

II. Approval of Minutes for October 3, 2004. The October minutes were reviewed and approved as written.

III. Staff Report.

  • DPZ - Mr. Leu mentioned that he has compiled a summary of the DPWES Decisions on Trail Waiver Requests for the last half of 2004. Copies were provided to the committee members. After the June meeting DPWES sends summary even though contributions to the Supervisor’s fund is not listed. DPWES agree with NMTC most of the time. The summary is only based on decision memos received by Mr. Leu. Mr Leu also mentioned that he has learned that in Fairfax County bikes can be ridden on sidewalks. We do have the power to disallow; we’ve not done it.
  • FCDOT - Mimi Murray reported that there will be two new staff people coming on board. Also, she was looking for people to manage a pit stop for the Bike to Work Day next year, especially in the southeast part of the county. They are thinking about changing the Bike to Work Day from the first Friday in May to the third Friday in May. Should know next week.
  • DPWES - Ahmed Rayyan mentioned that the bond referendum passed. Now we need to go to the Board of Supervisors as soon as possible with our priority trail list. Ahmed will come back to the committee with a list. As soon as possible, we should go to the Board with our priority list of projects. He will check to see if there’s a timeline involved. Ahmed mentioned that bonds are sold based on cash needs. The Supervisors already have a list of trail projects. Active projects total $2.7 Million; ours would be a supplemental list.

IV. Chair Report. Mr. Wright mentioned that DMV is offering license plates for bicycle enthusiasts; plates will be $10.00 in addition to the normal fees.

V. New Business.

  • Letter to the Chairman of the Board regarding vehicle parking on trails. Mike Shannon mentioned the history of vehicles parking near the South Run Park. Mike will draft a memo to the Board of Supervisors, and Bruce will send out to committee for review... Paul Johnson will send photos to go along with the memo.
  • Letter to the Chairman of the Board regarding buffer for major trails. Becky Cate discussed the history of the issue of trail buffers and the pressure trails have felt from development. She mentioned the W&OD Trail in particular, which has been hurting what with the VDOT tree cutting and the development along the Trail. She provided copies of a Loudoun County memorandum that discussed their policy in addressing the W&OD issue. The Committee discussed the current procedures as it relates to the setback policy. It was agreed that the total was 100 feet – 50 feet on either side of the Trail. It was noted that if we want to preserve our linear parks, the closer the houses get to the park, the more complaints there are. We need to have a guide to say that trails are important, and we must protect them as best we can. Regarding major commuting and recreational trails, we need to determine how to proceed: where encoded?

    A motion was made and seconded that the Committee accept the Buffer Resolution that Becky wrote and provided to Committee members be sent to the Board of Supervisors. During discussion, the following change was suggested to the second recommendation as follows: On the second line, add a comma after residential, delete “and”, add “and industrial” after the word, commercial, so the line now reads: residential, commercial and industrial activities that abut, or are adjacent to, these trails respect…. The motion passed, as changed, 10 in favor, one opposed. The resolution will go to staff to be taken under advisement. Becky will draft a cover letter and send it to Bruce.

VI. Old Business:

Jenny Pate thanked us for the letter supporting their request for additional money for trail completion.

  • Meeting adjourned 8:30 p.m.

Bruce mentioned that the December meeting would be held on December 8. If it is decided to have it, he will notify Committee members.

Minutes submitted by Mary Flowers.


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