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Thread: Columbia Pike

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustinW View Post
    Where are you on Columbia Pike? Can you pop up to Rt 50 and use that eastbound?
    50 just dead-ends into the cemetery, though, with its weird access restrictions.

    For all intents and purposes, there are three ways to bike into Arlington from the east (never mind the Potomac bridges): Custis Trail, Rosslyn streets, and the Four Mile Run trail. Otherwise, the cemetery and I-395 are insurmountable barriers. In the next few years, the new Washington Blvd/Columbia Pike interchange will have wider sidewalks and won't be quite so awful for bikes.

    In the very long term, a combination of the Country Club Bypass and a fully linked-up 12th St. S. (as shown in the Columbia Pike area plan) will create a low-traffic east-west link paralleling Columbia Pike over to Pentagon City, and by that time Long Bridge Park will connect to a new Potomac bridge, and perhaps pigs will fly.
    Last edited by paytonc; 11-19-2012 at 12:57 PM.

  2. #12
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    It's actually pretty easy to go through Fort Myer and the cemetery, I do it every day. Just show the guard an ID. If you have a federal ID they wave you though, otherwise they will log you in. One of the main entrances is on South 2nd St.

    The cemetery gates inside Fort Myer don't open until 8 am but then you can just sail through. If you come before 8, you can just go down McNair Drive (I think that is the name) and out Wright Gate.

    You can't go through the cemetery going back up, but you can go back up through Wright Gate.

  3. #13
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    I've done the ride through ANCC a number of timed and never been bothered.

    One good thing about the Ft. Meyer cut through is that going eastbound you can go through Arlington National Cemetary downhill which is a really cool ride. It is one-way, but for the morning commute it would be great.

    Woops! Didn't see that acorn already provided this.
    Last edited by Steve; 11-16-2012 at 05:25 PM. Reason: I stopped reading other posts too early.

  4. #14
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    I rode once ON Columbia Pike to go to Performance Baileys from 4MR Trail. It reminded me of Han Solo in the Millennium Falcon dodging asteroids with Chewy. Kinda sketchy.

    Quote Originally Posted by MBernier View Post
    I live off Columbia Pike and have started biking to work downtown, but have to schlep over to N. Arlington and catch the Custis Trail, or over to the Four Mile Run trail to Mt. Vernon. Columbia Pike is simply not bike friendly, although once I get to the Pentagon, it's fine. Anyone have suggestions on how to cut THROUGH central Arlington, without having to go around the edges? It would be great to have bike lanes on Columbia Pike....

  5. #15
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    Well, for someone like me who doesn't use the route frequently, having to remember:
    - hours that the Fort part is open
    - hours that the Cemetery part is open
    - proper credentials
    - weird place names like "such and such gate"
    - unmarked street names
    - proper directionality (which still leaves someone climbing Columbia Pike westbound)
    - Will I Be Stopped By Someone Heavily Armed?
    ...all qualify as "weird access restrictions" = "might as well not go there."

    Distance-wise, it also doesn't help someone on Columbia Pike to go north around the cemetery and into Rosslyn, not when in theory it's almost a straight shot to the 14th St. bridges.

  6. #16
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    dasgeh is offline Queen of Family Biking & All Things Kidical
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    I find that you can get to George Mason pretty easily on side streets just north and south of 50. I rarely got West of George Mason, but pretty quickly you end up at the W&OD trail. You can also use Fort Myer to bypass the Columbia Pike/Washington Blvd interchange -- go through the 2nd Street gate, then head to Henderson Hall -- follow the main road from the gate straight through the 3 way stop and around to the right. Take a left at the T, and that will take you around to a gate that will put you on Southgate Road, South of the cemetery. From there you can take the Washington Blvd trail to Memorial Bridge, or cut through the Pentagon the Marina to get to the 14th Street Bridge. (Complicated, but not far).

  7. #17
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    Cool Cycling on Columbia Pike

    Greetings... the last thread in this topic was sent in 2012... I work at the Pentagon and usually ride the W&OD home, via other ways and the Four Mile Run trail... is Columbia Pike a safe route from the Pentagon to where it connects at Four Mile Run/W&OD? Just curious to see if anything has improved on Columbia Pike as far as conditions mentioned in this thread since 2011.

    TC

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    Quote Originally Posted by mtneer92 View Post
    Greetings... the last thread in this topic was sent in 2012... I work at the Pentagon and usually ride the W&OD home, via other ways and the Four Mile Run trail... is Columbia Pike a safe route from the Pentagon to where it connects at Four Mile Run/W&OD? Just curious to see if anything has improved on Columbia Pike as far as conditions mentioned in this thread since 2011.

    TC
    No.

    Have you tried Army-Navy Drive to the 4mr trail? Have you thought about cutting through JB Myer-Henderson hall?

    P.S. I also work in this monstrosity if you have any other questions.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtneer92 View Post
    Greetings... the last thread in this topic was sent in 2012... I work at the Pentagon and usually ride the W&OD home, via other ways and the Four Mile Run trail... is Columbia Pike a safe route from the Pentagon to where it connects at Four Mile Run/W&OD? Just curious to see if anything has improved on Columbia Pike as far as conditions mentioned in this thread since 2011.

    TC
    Hello. FWIW, my two cents is that if I were going from the Pentagon to the W&OD, I would probably take the Pike, but just after Courthouse, would scoot to the right and take some combo of 8th, 9th, to parallel the Pike and get on the W&OD via 7th St. (The combo f[your preferred Glebe crossing, hills, traffic light efficiency, distance, etc]). On the plus side, the Pike headed west by the W&OD has been repaved so that is one nice feature but you're still dealing with few miles of close passing cars and breathing exhaust.

    Also, I would occasionally throw my bike on a bus like the 16x to get to better, safer biking faster, especially if I were riding to Herndon.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by elbows View Post
    Hello. FWIW, my two cents is that if I were going from the Pentagon to the W&OD, I would probably take the Pike, but just after Courthouse, would scoot to the right and take some combo of 8th, 9th, to parallel the Pike and get on the W&OD via 7th St. (The combo f[your preferred Glebe crossing, hills, traffic light efficiency, distance, etc]). On the plus side, the Pike headed west by the W&OD has been repaved so that is one nice feature but you're still dealing with few miles of close passing cars and breathing exhaust.

    Also, I would occasionally throw my bike on a bus like the 16x to get to better, safer biking faster, especially if I were riding to Herndon.
    As elbows says, biking ON Columbia Pike still sucks, but there are some nice parallel routes starting from Wayne Street West. Washington Blvd up the hill to Wayne is just abysmal though. Lots of traffic, up a hill, bad quality pavement, buses, etc.

    Southgate Road >> Ft Meyer >> 2nd street and then taking the neighborhood streets down to the W&OD is far, far, far, far superior if you don't mind the security checkpoint.

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