Washington Blvd (Rt 27) Bridge over 110
Rev up your email clients or mark your calendars, VDOT is taking public comment on a proposed design for the reconstruction of the Washington Blvd bridge over 110. Which bridge is that and why should you care? It's the bridge that you cross if you take the path that connects the east end of Columbia Pike up past the 9/11 memorial to the Mt Vernon Trail and Memorial Bridge. This bridge:
Props to Arlington County who has been working with VDOT on the design; it includes a 14-foot shared-use path on the east side, and an eight-foot sidewalk on the west side. Not only is the trail side widened, but there is a physical barrier added between the path and car traffic. The VDOT project page doesn't mention it, but I believe the "lengthening" of the bridge mentioned will also help provide additional space for the long-mired 110 trail.
Hopefully more information will become available as we get closer to the February 13th public hearing. If you'd like to email your comments in early, you might want to: 1) applaud VDOT for including such a nice wide, physically separated trail connection on the bridge. 2) "encourage" them to commit to keeping the trail connection open during rush hour throughout construction (the page commits to maintaining 2 lanes of car traffic at all times but doesn't mention bicycles). Please post additional thoughts here with any cyclist concerns you may think of.
A sorely needed project. The current bridge and "trail" are as bad as the old Humpback Bridge was. Looks like the proposed replacement could be as good as the new Humpback Bridge and bike path.
I hope there are also plans to widen other sections of the bike trail along Washington Blvd. The bridge path is sub-standard but so are the narrow sidewalks to the north and south of the bridge. The Columbia Pike-Memorial Bridge path is slowly improving. I'm glad to see this progress.
Construction is now underway on the new Rte. 27 bridge over Rte. 110.
No major impact on car traffic is expected until May, when Washington Blvd. will be reduced from three lanes in each direction to two lanes in each direction.
Pedestrian traffic will be shifted to a temporary bridge in 2016. I guess that means cyclist traffic will shift to that temporary bridge too.
March 25, 2015 VDOT press release: http://www.virginiadot.org/newsroom/...ngton81039.asp
The new estimated completion date is May 2018: http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/..._route_110.asp
Maybe after the new bridge is in place, and the rest of that trail/sidewalk is widened, and after NPS fixes and redesigns the Memorial Circle/Columbia Island trail/road intersections, I might actually use this route again. The MVT/14th St. Bridge route is so much better. But for some people, the Washington Blvd./Columbia Island route works better. So I'm glad to see this project get started.
The Challenge Ride at the Air Force Association Cycling Classic includes this bridge as part of the course. Will the construction affect the course and the ride? Hopefully all the parties are aware of the event and the construction, and everything runs smoothly.
I suppose people could detour around the construction by using Boundary Channel Drive.
Their routes would then be (heading north, reverse if heading south):
- Rotary Road -> Connector Road -> Boundary Channel Drive -> Columbia Island -> MVT -> 14th St Bridge or
- Rotary Road -> Connector Road -> Boundary Channel Drive -> Washington Blvd trail (north of construction) -> Memorial Circle/MVT