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Thread: Columbia Pike

  1. #21
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    While the Pike is not ideal, I presonnaly don't think it's that problematic. It's not great but if the option is not riding or taking Columbia Pike, I'd ride the Pike.

    If you are coming from the pentagon your best bet is to go up southgate rd (between what used to be the navy annex and ANC) up to Ft. Myer and then taking the left on Orm to go to the Pike. Take the Pike up to Courthouse and then get on the 8/9th streek bike blvd. Or go through Ft. Myer. I wouldn't let the Pike's traffic stop you from riding. Particualry as you only need to be in it for a short time.

  2. #22
    PotomacCyclist is offline I spend all day thinking about bikes and talking to people on the internet about them.
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    There is ongoing construction for the new Washington Blvd. bridge over Columbia Pike. Expect various lane closures and detours on and off until the project is complete next summer or fall. During some weeks, the sidewalks are closed off completely on one or both sides of Columbia Pike. The lanes might be pitted with potholes and there may be construction debris everywhere. On other weeks, that area is a little better, but still far from ideal.

    VDOT posts occasional updates on the project website: http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/...nterchange.asp

    When the project is finished, Columbia Pike will have a 10' wide shared-use path (sidewalk), which will make that area much better for cycling. Of course, the rest of Columbia Pike will still be inconvenient and/or hazardous. The Navy Annex building has been demolished, but the old sidewalk along Columbia Pike hasn't been improved yet. (But the last time I checked was a couple months ago. I don't think anything has changed, but maybe someone finally decided to put down a temporary asphalt path. Probably not.)

    Info on the bike boulevards: http://projects.arlingtonva.us/proje...ke-boulevards/

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris_s View Post

    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.
    I wrote a long reply, but then realized it was just a wordy way of saying exactly what chris_s said.

    FWIW, so far I've had no trouble at any of the Myer gates w/ a Fed or military ID. The two gates on this route (Gate 1 and Hatfield) are open 24/7. Wright Gate (the one you take to go around to the north side of the cemetery) is open 5 am to 6pm for visitors and till 11pm for military.

    Some useful links:
    Ft Myer/Henderson Hall map: http://www.jbmhh.army.mil/web/jbmhh/...ermapMAR14.pdf
    Ft Myer/HH access info: http://www.jbmhh.army.mil/web/jbmhh/...irections.html

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alcova cyclist View Post
    Wright Gate (the one you take to go around to the north side of the cemetery) is open 5 am to 6pm for visitors and till 11pm for military.
    Some ladies on the Women & Bicycles FB group were reporting that they could bike through the Wright Gate past 6pm without a military ID.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by dasgeh View Post
    Some ladies on the Women & Bicycles FB group were reporting that they could bike through the Wright Gate past 6pm without a military ID.
    That doesn't particularly surprise me - I supposed it's really more visitor motor vehicles they prohibit since I think they have to search them and I guess after 6pm they close down the vehicle inspection point that's just inside the gate. I use a mil ID when I bike through there, so while I've been through the gate after 6pm, my experience doesn't shed any light for those without a mil ID.

    Chris

  6. #26
    PotomacCyclist is offline I spend all day thinking about bikes and talking to people on the internet about them.
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    Traffic shift related to the Washington Blvd. bridge over Columbia Pike rebuild:

    Washington Boulevard Bridge over Columbia Pike in Arlington

    ***** NOTICE *****

    Major Traffic Shift

    Between 9 p.m. Thursday, May 21 and 5 a.m. Friday, May 22, VDOT will be performing a major traffic switch on Columbia Pike (Route 244) at the Washington Boulevard (Route 27) interchange.

    The traffic switch includes:

    - Opening the realigned ramp from eastbound Washington Boulevard to Columbia Pike. The new ramp aligns with the S. Queen Street intersection.
    - Permanently activating the new traffic signal at the S. Queen St/ramp/Columbia Pike intersection.
    - Permanently removing the existing signal at Columbia Pike and S. Quinn Street.
    - Permanently changing S. Quinn St to one-way, entrance only from eastbound Columbia Pike. No northbound traffic on S. Quinn St. will be permitted between 10th Street S and Columbia Pike. Also, traffic will not be permitted to turn left onto S. Quinn St from westbound Columbia Pike.


    This shouldn't have a major effect on cyclists. But it appears to be a major step forward in the process of completing the new bridge. I noticed that the estimated completion date has been moved up, from Fall 2015 to Summer 2015. That could still mean August or early September. But at least it looks like it won't be October or November.

    The new bridge will include a 10-foot sidewalk. At least one block of Columbia Pike won't be horrible for cycling. No updates on any new bike/pedestrian trails along other parts of the east end of Columbia Pike.

    http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/...nterchange.asp

  7. #27
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    Is the Washington Blvd. bridge over Columbia Pike nearing completion? The project website lists Summer 2015 as the estimated completion date. (That date was changed a couple times after the usual construction delays.)

    Now there is the following notice at the top of the page:

    ***** NOTICE *****

    On the nights of Monday, July 6 through Friday, July 10, and Sunday, July 12 through Thursday, July 16 (from 9 p.m. until 4:30 a.m. each night), VDOT will be performing milling and final paving on both Route 27 (Washington Boulevard) and Route 244 (Columbia Pike). Lanes along both Route 27 and Route 244 may shift multiple times each night to accommodate the paving operations.

    The work for each night is weather dependent.


    I haven't ridden through there in a few months. Maybe I'll take a look over the next week or two to see if the project is wrapping up.

  8. #28
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    I can say from a few times I ended up driving (instead of biking :-o) from Del Ray to my current workplace in Clarendon over the last couple months that work does seem to have progressed significantly with fewer construction barrels/cones and straighter lane marker alignments.

  9. #29
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    [I haven't ridden through there in a few months. Maybe I'll take a look over the next week or two to see if the project is wrapping up.[/QUOTE]

    I deal with it daily, ferrying my wife to work. Considering I've nearly wiped out on the bike twice on this road, I am eagerly awaiting completion of the bridge *and* repaving of that downhill stretch of the Pike. I need that section for a Papillon ride I'm leading in August. Ft. Myer's no longer an option, remember?

    I shall gladly update.

  10. #30
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    I ran through there yesterday. All the sidewalks are finished. So is the bridge, from what I could tell.

    What work remains? Some of the road lanes/ramps only have a base layer of asphalt, so there is a gap between some of the new sidewalks and the road. Don't be fooled by all the smooth surfaces in that area just yet. If you ride on the sidewalk (which many people do along the Pike), watch out for those short dropoffs from the sidewalk to the road. It's only a couple inches, but it's abrupt and it could be a problem on road tires.

    They didn't finish the work on Thursday/Friday morning as scheduled. It shouldn't take them too long to add the top layer of asphalt for the remaining ramps and road lanes. But that could depend on the weather.

    I was running so I don't know what the rest of the road surface is like on the eastern part of Columbia Pike. I noticed some rough patches when I walked through the crosswalks. Based on that, I'd say that the rest of the road is the same as it was before. They are only paving the sections in the bridge project area.

    The new sidewalks are very wide. It might be wide enough for two-way bike traffic and pedestrians, all at the same time. At least one small section of Columbia Pike now has a decent side path.

    -------

    On a separate note, the Army/DOD is not cutting the grass on the areas that will be turned over to the Cemetery. This includes the site of the former gas station on Joyce Street and the site of the former Navy Annex building. The grass and other plants are a couple feet high, including new plants/weeds on the sidewalks. It looks like a mess. Even if the land swap with Arlington County hasn't gone through, why would they let this land look like this? Joyce St. and Columbia Pike lead up to the revered Arlington National Cemetery. Those unkempt plots make the area look like a junkyard. It shouldn't be that difficult for the Army to order some soldiers to cut the weeds and grass. They have the equipment and the personnel.

    I'd send the contact person an email, but he doesn't take too kindly to questions. I asked him a question a couple years ago about the land swap with Arlington County and the proposed bike paths along Columbia Pike. For some reason, he became very defensive about it. All I did was ask a simple question.
    Last edited by PotomacCyclist; 07-20-2015 at 09:39 AM.

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