Autumn on Lake Audobon

Autumn on Lake Audobon
Autumn on Lake Audubon, Photo by Alison Kamat

Thursday, January 30, 2014

UPDATED: Reston Projects High Priority in $4 Billion Fairfax County Transportation Plan, RestonNow, January 30, 2014

Update:  Upon further review--as they say in NFL re-plays---of the list of priority projects discussed here, we find that Fairfax County is expecting to spend a very limited amount of money on the three "priority" critical trans-corridor crossings in the six-year County Investment Plan.  

The total sum the County plans to put into the three projects is less than $17MM over the next 6 years, and that's merely "Planning level funding only.  Contingent on development."  (See pp. 424-425.) This sum is from a total of $1,288 million among the County's new priority transportation projects, including $205 million going to a long list of bicycle and pedestrian improvements countywide.   In addition, another $133 million will go to cover cost overruns and underfunding of projects already underway (see p. 432).  In short, out of the $1.4 billion list of priority spending, Reston could see about one percent of the County's transportation funds for vital transportation improvements if funding is available. 

Moreover, the only County funding of these three is an already committed $300,000 to studying the Soapstone Connector, so there is no new County money committed to Reston's vital crossings through 2020.  (See Attachment 5.)  Any money added for studies on the other two crossings are dependent on funding from federal and state sources.   

Net:  No new money for Reston's most vital transportation infrastructure needs.  

We have extracted the transportation portion of the massive Board package and appended it below.

Stuck in traffic? Some major transportation improvements are on the way for Fairfax County in general and Reston in particular.
 Reston traffic
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a long priority list of more than 225 road, transit, trail and sidewalk projects that will receive funding from 2015-2020. The $4 billion in the next six years, thanks to an unprecedented infusion of tax revenue dedicated to transportation. . .
Good news for critics of changes to the Reston Master Plan, which will determine how density and development will happen close to Reston’s three upcoming Silver Line stations. Some studies have shown waits of up to five minutes at many traffic lights, giving the traffic a failing grade.
Several of the proposed projects will be aimed at helping alleviate that congestion.
Click here for the rest of this article by Karen Goff, including the prioritized list of Reston projects.

By our calculation, more than $330 million is being committed to as a "high priority" to developing the three Dulles Corridor crossovers essential to limiting the growth of congestion in Reston's urbanizing areas We would add that this is a great start to addressing some of the most challenging traffic congestion issues facing the re-development of the Dulles Corridor consistent with the draft Reston Master Plan.  But, as Yogi Berra famously said, "It ain't over 'till its over."  This is literally the truth for the overpasses & underpass needed across the corridor.  Moreover, from what we've heard in the Master Plan Task Force and elsewhere, the cost projections for these vital crossovers appear low, and they'll certainly go up over time.  We'll see. 

Nonetheless, we appreciate the County taking seriously the most vital transportation infrastructure needs of our urbanizing community in the coming investment cycle.  



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