Trail Waiver #[TBD]:
|Article Prepared By Robert Michie
NMTC, Lee District
Last Reviewed: 13 September 2005
The subject area is a commercial property inside the Commercial Revitalization District in Springfield VA. This property, once occupied by a restaurant, has been cleared for redevelopment. The Residence Inn is a Marriott product specializing in extended stay lodging. This development will be six stories tall, and have approximately 165 units. The trail requirement is for an 8-foot wide Type 1 trail along the frontage and an on-road bike lane. Applicant's request: modify the bike lane requirement to accommodate the following design:
Figure 1: Map of Subject Area: Fairfax County Contour Map 80-4
Figure 1 shows the subject area within the green circle. The Amherst Avenue bridge on the left, and the ramp merge areas for I-395 and Franconia Road are on the right. The white arrowhead figure in the center of the map represents a grassy divider separating northbound and southbound traffic on Backlick Road. This divider is clearly visible in Photo 2 below.
Photo 2 shows a particularly unfriendly environment for travelers coming westbound on Old Keene Mill Road by any means other than in a motor vehicle. Indeed, even motor vehicle drivers have to be alert in this area. There is no way to move north or south at Backlick Road in any transportation mode. The designated crossing is the Amherst Avenue Bridge. Photo 3 shows that the Bridge is equipped with pedestrian stairs to allow quick access to the site and westbound Old Keene Mill Road. Westbound traffic, either by foot, bicycle, or Segway, becomes feasible only at Backlick Road itself. The designated eastbound pedestrian and bicycle route is a few blocks north at Commerce Street, and is described in the Waterford Trail Waiver discussion of March 2005.
The area is not likely to benefit from bike lanes in this area as that the County has Commerce Street to get riders safely around this stretch of Old Keene Mill Road. The concrete dividers visible in Photo 2 (the barrier in the middle of Old Keene Mill Road, and the island divider that parallels it on the left) basically precludes all bicycle and pedestrian westbound traffic in this area. The Amherst Avenue Bridge also chokes the area traverse, making it impossible to add bike lanes without sacrificing sidewalks.
Field Check 22 August 2005
These photographs show Backlick Road and Old Keene Mill Road at the proposed site of the Marriott Residence Inn.
Grant the Waiver for the following reasons:
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