Fwd: Anti-Park-Trail Advocacy Associated with the TransAction Update

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Allen Muchnick

Sep 6, 2022, 4:23:18 PMSep 6
to Arlington County Bicycle Advisory Committee
FYI.  NVTA Project #72 is a legacy umbrella Arlington bikeway improvement project from the previous version of TransAction.   Projects must be described in TransAction to be eligible for future funding from the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, which generally uses NoVA sales tax and other non-motorist revenue to expand roadways in NoVA.

Allen Muchnick
Manassas VA
703-625-2453 mobile

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: Bernard H. Berne <bhb...@yahoo.com>
To: Bernard Berne <bhb...@yahoo.com>
Sent: Tuesday, September 6, 2022 at 03:28:23 AM EDT
Subject: Reminder: Northern Virginia Transportation Authority's (NVTA's) Public Comment Period for its TransAction Program (NOVA Park's W&OD Dual Trails project and other paved trail projects in Arlington's parks)

The Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA) is presently holding a public comment period for its "TransAction" program.  "TransAction" is the long-range multimodal transportation plan for Northern Virginia addressing regional transportation needs through 2045.  The NVTA offers a public comment period for "TransAction" only once in every five years. 

Click here to see information about "TransAction" and its current public comment period.  The NVTA is holding this public comment period from August 1 to 11:59 p.m. on September 18, 2022.  The public comment period includes opportunities for speaking in person or by phone at a public hearing and for submitting written comments on an on-line comment form.

Public hearing

The NVTA will hold a public hearing on "TransAction" on Thursday, September 8, 2022 beginning at 7:00 p.m.  Register to speak at the hearing by one of the following three methods.

1. Click here to access the on-line registration form to speak at the public hearing. 

Enter your e-mail address, name and zip code on the form. Click on the circle in the line entitled “Remotely via Call-In Line” or the line entitled “In-Person at NVTA's Offices (3040 Williams Drive, Suite 200, Fairfax, VA 22031)”. The on-line registration deadline is 5:00 p.m. today, Tuesday, September 6, 2022  .

2. Register by phone: 703-642-4652. The phone registration deadline is 5:00 p.m. today, Tuesday, September 6, 2022  .

3. Register in person before the Thursday, September 8, 2022 meeting at  NVTA’s Offices (3040 Williams Drive, Suite 200, Fairfax, VA 22031). Sign-in from 6:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. ET.

Written Comments

To provide written comments, click here to access the TransAction on-line comment form. The NVTA will accept written comments on TransAction through September 18, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. 

If you have feedback on specific Transaction Projects, fill out Box 5 on the online comment form. Include the project ID number and name from the project list with your comments.

Environmentally Harmful Projects

If the NVTA provides funding through TransAction, two of the proposed projects (Projects Nos. ID#72 and  ID#406) will destroy natural areas and increase stormwater runoff in Arlington County and other Northern Virginia jurisdictions by increasing the widths of paved bike/pedestrian trails within local, regional and national parks.

The NVTA rates and ranks projects according to their congestion relief:cost ratio.Bike/pedestrian trail projects usually receive high priorities for NVTA funding because they cost much less than do competing highway and transit projects. The NVTA does not consider environmental  impacts when rating and ranking projects for funding. 

The Arlington County government is sponsoring TransAction Project ID#72 (Arlington Regional Trail Network). The Bicycle Element of the County’s Master Transportation Plan recommends each of the projects that are within ID#72. 

Paragraph “h” within ID#72 proposes the expansion (widening) of the Bluemont Junction Trail, the Custis Trail, the Four Mile Run Trail, the Mount Vernon Trail and the W&OD Trail.  Each these trails travel through parks that are within Arlington County. 

Widening of each trail (except the Mount Vernon Trail) would remove trees and/or natural meadow areas within public parks. All would add impermeable surfaces and increase stormwater runoff into the County’s streams, the Potomac River and/or the Chesapeake Bay. 

NOVA Parks is sponsoring Transaction Project ID #406 (W&OD Regional Trail Capacity and Connectivity Enhancements).  Within Arlington County, this project (which NOVA Parks terms the "W&OD Dual Trails Project") is the same as the expansion (widening) of the W&OD Trail that the County is sponsoring in  ID#72, paragraph “h”. 

If you would not like to see the adverse environmental impacts that Projects ID#72 and ID#406 will create in Arlington’s parks, be sure to express your concerns in Box 5 on the Comment Form and register to speak at the NVTA’s public hearing on Thursday, September 8, 2022.

Click here to read the NVTA’s descriptions of Projects ID#72 (on page 10) and ID#406 (on page 44). I have copied these descriptions below.



TransAction Project ID #72:

Project Name: Arlington Regional Trail Network

Project Description: Provide dedicated bicycle facilities, bikesharing and key sidewalk improvements on multiple corridors in Arlington. Example corridors includes Carlin Springs Road, Walter Reed Drive/ Fillmore Street, Harrison Street, Washington Boulevard, Route 110, and others. Network also includes:

 a. Trail parallel to Washington Boulevard between Arlington Boulevard and Columbia Pike; 

b. Rehab of Custis Trail to current VDOT shared used path design and construction specifications in Rosslyn; 

c. Extension of Custis Trail north of I-66 between North Kennebec Street and North Quantico Street; 

d. Long Bridge Park Esplanade extension to Mount Vernon Trail;

 e. Arlington Boulevard trail; 

f. Theodore Roosevelt Bridge connection to Mount Vernon Trail and Marine Corps War Memorial; 

g. Dedicated cycling facility along the Route 50 service road (southside), between North Rhodes Street and North Meade Street; 

h. Expansion of Arlington bicycle commuter routes: Bluemont Junction Trail, Custis Trail, Four Mile Run Trail, Mount Vernon Trail, W&OD Trail;

i. Improve connections between the County trail network and activity centers, as well as inter-jurisdictional connections.

Project sponsor: Arlington County

Cost: $80 million



Cost: TransAction Project ID #406

Project Name: W&OD Regional Trail Capacity and Connectivity Enhancements.

Project Description: This multi-jurisdiction project will improve trail capacity at multiple sites along the Washington & Old Dominion (W&OD) Railroad Regional Park. It will build on the models established in Falls Church and Arlington with previous NVTA funding. Treatments will include parallel trails for multiple modes of transportation, wider trails to accommodate increased use, grade separation, crossing/intersection improvements, last-mile connectivity to transit, and/or enhanced connectivity to other regional trails, as appropriate to each site. Potential sites include but are not limited to locations within Town of Vienna, Arlington County, Fairfax County, Reston, Herndon, Loudoun County, and Town of Leesburg.

Project Sponsor: NOVA Parks

Cost: $60 million


Bernie Berne

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