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Discussion Title Prioritizing Proposed County Transportation Projects

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) are seeking feedback from the community to help prioritize unfunded transportation projects in the county. The county has identified more than 100 unfunded capital and operating projects important for improving the efficiency and safety of the county's transportation network (these are in addition to the approximately 300 projects already funded and underway). With very limited amount of funding available for these proposed projects (approximately $100 million), the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors would like to know which of these projects are most important to you. To view a list and an interactive map of the proposed projects, visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/tpp2017.htm.


Tonya McCreary : Hi, this is Tonya with the Fairfax County Department of Transportation. We're here with team members from FCDOT to answer your questions regarding Fairfax County's Transportation Priorities Plan (TPP). We welcome your input and questions on unfunded transportation projects, which will help us craft a recommendation to the Board of Supervisors who will approve the TPP in early 2018. 


Anonymous User : How do I enter the chat?

Tonya McCreary : You've made it!  Simply post your question...


Anonymous User : How do you consider $100,000,000.00 to be a very limited amount of funding?

Tonya McCreary : When we say that $100 million is a limited amount of funding for new projects, we are considering the total need of all unfunded transportation projects, which is much higher than $100 million. Additionally, when comparing the $100 million of available funding to the Board’s current Transportation Priorities Plan of nearly $3 billion, this is just 5 percent of the total funding. Finally, many large-scale transportation projects in Fairfax County cost several tens of millions of dollars each, if not more. When taken from that perspective, $100 million doesn’t go far toward implementing multiple, large-scale projects.


Anonymous User : More of a request. Can we please start heavy ticketing drivers who fail to use turn signal? That can cause several accidents and irritates me very much. It's required to obtain a license, and our men in uniform will have great excuse to ticket negligent motorists. Thank you for your service FFC, thank u very much!

Tonya McCreary : Thanks for your question. We would like to refer you to the Fairfax County Police Department for further follow up. We know they are active on social media - please reach out to them via their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/fairfaxcountypolice/ or on twitter at @fairfaxpolice.


Ann bus rider : In project 678 for bus routing changes from Herndon Monroe transit station, there are no details. What routes are part of the changes? What changes are part of the recommendation? Where can one find this additional detail? (it is not on the Fairfax Connector Web Site).

Tonya McCreary :

Project 678 includes changes to Routes 924 and 929 that would most likely be made after Phase 2 of the Silver Line opens. Here is a link to the Transit Development Plan, which contains details on the proposed changes to these two routes, and many others: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/pdf/transit_development_plan_fy16-22.pdf.

Within this document, the proposed changes for Route 929 are described on page 172 and shown graphically on page 173, while the proposed changes for Route 924 are described on page 153 and shown graphically on page 154.


Rosseta Wilbur : Why there's no a Fairfax Connector bus going down RT 123 from GMU to Tyson's Metro station directly? After elimination of Metro bus 15M riders are left with no, or very poor alternatives.

Tonya McCreary : CUE bus service operates between the GMU Fairfax campus and the Vienna Metrorail Station seven days a week. Timetables and a map of the CUE routes are available at this link:

http://www.fairfaxva.gov/government/public-works/transportation-division/cue-bus/cue-bus-map-and-schedule

Connector Route 463 runs between the Vienna Station and the Tysons Corner Metrorail Station seven days a week, which runs along much of the former 15M. Here is a link to the timetable and map for the 463: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/connector/pdf/news/463.pdf.

Fairfax County has chosen not to extend the 463 to GMU to avoid duplicating CUE service.


Brian : The increased traffic on Fort Hunt Road (Fort Belvoir commuters circumventing Route 1) has caused increasingly dangerous conditions. This road is already unsafe due to the lack of sidewalks, stop signs, and crosswalks at the intersections and bus stops. What is the county doing to address this? The speed limit needs to be reduced to 25 and strictly enforced. And sidewalks need to be installed to provide some minimum barrier for safety.

Tonya McCreary : Thanks for your question! The County is aware of the needs you are describing, and improvements have been included in the TPP unfunded project list (https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/pdf/tpp_2017/project_list_final.pdf) - please see Project 643 on page 4.

VDOT would be the proper agency to address your concerns regarding stop signs, speed limits and crosswalks. You can find your information here: http://www.virginiadot.org/about/nova_quick.asp.


Tom : I'm torn between the need for trails and the need for safety. I want the trail network to be better connected, but we really need to do something about the lack of pedestrian access at Rt 50/Arlington Blvd and I-495 (many people still walk/ride along this very narrow corridor). However, that overpass is some $50M, which would go a long way to improving the network. How is safety and need prioritized?

Tonya McCreary : Unfunded projects are selected based on quantitative measures included in the benefit-cost analysis, and qualitative measures. These measures can be found on slide 18 of our public TPP presentation:

https://www.slideshare.net/fairfaxcounty/update-of-fairfax-countys-transportation-priorities-plan-tpp-80748836


Additionally, staff takes into consideration public, stakeholder and Board feedback.


Jessica : One of my main concerns is traffic and pedestrian safety on Fort Hunt Road. A lot of people bypass Hwy. 1 using Fort Hunt Road and they drive way too fast on what should be a residential area. I did submit my support for the pedestrian/bike line all along Fort Hunt, but I'd also like to see more emphasis on pedestrian safety with maybe some speed regulations/reminders and more crosswalks. There are bus stops all along the road and it can be very dangerous to cross the street.

Tonya McCreary : Thanks to all our Fort Hunt Road residents asking questions! Please see our previous answer to Question #5. Also, you can request pedestrian improvements at: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/pedestrian/map.htm.


Anonymous : If I can't get to a public meeting, how can I submit my comments for the plan update?

Tonya McCreary : Please email us at DOTinfo@fairfaxcounty.gov by Nov. 9. You can also take our online survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/tppfunding. Thank you!


Anonymous User : All of the projects on the list have been approved, and are simply unfunded, correct? If so, what's the timetable for selecting which projects will receive the limited ($100MM) funding and for work to begin?

Tonya McCreary : The projects being considered for Board approval are unfunded. We have two more public meetings in October, and our deadline for comments is Nov. 9. We will be seeking approval from the Board of Supervisors for funding of the selected projects in early 2018.

The Board's current Transportation Priorities Plan is for FY 2015-2020. The $100M in available revenue for new projects will not be available until FY2021-2023. Therefore, we anticipate projects implemented from this process to begin after FY21.


Tom Cain : On the Transportation Priorities, is the "Cost Ratio" the same thing as the "Cost Benefit Analysis" on slide 16 of the briefing?

Tonya McCreary : On the list of projects (https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/pdf/tpp_2017/project_list_final.pdf), the "benefit/cost ratio" is the score derived from the cost benefit analysis.


McLean : I didn't see on the list a crosswalk for the intersection of Galleria Drive and Tysons Blvd. Bus passengers arriving on Galleria Drive don't have a safe way to cross over to the Metro station without heading in the opposite direction, crossing Galleria Drive, heading back to and crossing Tysons Blvd., and then crossing Galleria Drive again. This is a part of Tysons where the majority of construction projects are completed, but the pedestrian infrastructure hasn't caught up.

Tonya McCreary : This project is currently under construction and should be completed in Spring 2018. Please see: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fcdot/pdf/fctsr/fctsr20170926.pdf for more information. Thanks for your question!


Tom Cain : Whatever happened to the plan to redesign the roads around the 7 Corners area? The study was completed a long time ago and I thought it was approved but haven't heard anything since then.

Tonya McCreary : Thanks for your question. The funding for the transportation improvement projects included in the Seven Corners Comprehensive Plan Amendment has not yet been identified. These long-term improvement projects are projected to span many decades into the future, and will be implemented along with re-development in the area.


Jesse Kraft, Principal of Coates ES : Hi! Thanks to FCDOT and Supervisor Foust for this opportunity to contribute to this discussion. The prospect of having a traffic light at the intersection of River Birch and Coppermine makes me feel happiness and relief. The traffic there is significant, and I've witnessed 2 accidents there in my 15 months as principal at Coates. I pass through that intersection each morning and afternoon along with many members of my staff, parents and students, and it's a constant source of concern. I especially worry when I see pedestrians (my students and families) navigating that intersection after school. Is there anything the Coates community can do to further show our support for any plans to make that intersection safer?

Tonya McCreary : Thanks Principal Kraft, we are looking into this request and will follow up with you after our chat.


Linda : The intersection of Fox Mill and Pinecrest Rds is dangerous due to congestion in the area and people using Fox Mill as a pass through. It is on the list of projects. There are a number of schools in the area and have been many accidents there. Please fund this project.

Tonya McCreary : Thank you for your input, we will include this as we consider projects for recommendation to the Board.


Brian : What is the county doing to address the increased commuter traffic on residential Fort Hunt Road? These are the Fort Belvoir commuters circumventing Route 1. The increased commuter, cut-through traffic has increased dangerous conditions on Fort Hunt Road, which is already void of proper sidewalks, stop signs, and appropriate residential speed limit, and crosswalks at the numerous bus stops.

Tonya McCreary : We hear your concern. VDOT has a project to widen Richmond Highway between Mount Vernon Highway and Napper Road, which will eliminate the remaining bottleneck on Richmond Highway. In addition, we are in the early stages of planning for the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project between the Huntington Metro Station and Ft. Belvoir. Between these two projects, this should help alleviate the added congestion on Fort Hunt Road.


Mark : If the New Braddock Rd/Route 28 interchange is selected for TPP funding could it be implemented concurrently with the Route 28 widening between Route 29 and the Bull Run Bridge.

Tonya McCreary : It is unlikely that funding would be available for the interchange within the time frame of the Rt. 28 widening project. The design and construction features of the project will not preclude a future interchange. We will certainly consider input from the TPP survey as we make our recommendations to the Board.


Tonya McCreary : Thanks to everyone for submitting questions to today's Ask Fairfax! chat. FCDOT is hosting two more community meetings next Monday, Oct. 23 at the Fairfax County Government Center and on Monday, Oct. 30 at the Thomas Jefferson Library in Falls Church. Both meetings will be held at 7 p.m. You can continue to submit comments via email to DOTinfo@fairfaxcounty.gov until Nov. 9. Thank you!

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