Trying to Figure out the New Arlington Boulevard Trail Configuration

This story from Dr. Gridlock has prompted me to go here and here and see if I can make any sense of the the shared-use path(s) this might somehow exist in 2013 along Arlington Boulevard. I'm confused because in VDOT site uses eastbound and westbound, whereas Arlington talks about the "south side" of Arlington Boulevard. Here's what I think might happen.
I love using Paint.

  • A new trail will be built on the Fort Myer side (eastbound) of Arlington Boulevard. This trail will end at N Rolfe Street and will be useful for taking you nowhere in particular and certainly not Rosslyn, where many people work. I guess you could take 12th street down to the parallel Arlington Boulevard to Fort Meade and then go either down the 110 trail to the Memorial Bridge or over the Fort Meade Bridge to lower Rosslyn. Why you'd want to be on this side of Route 50 baffles me. 
  • On the westbound side of Arlington Boulevard, there is now a trail. There will still be a trail, but it'll be moved over to parallel the C-D road, which will lead to ramps for cars to travel to Courthouse Road and 10th Street. From these renderings, it looks like users of the shared-use path will still have to travel about 50 feet up Courthouse Road in order to cross the street and then proceed under the bridge. This is inconvenient. 
  • Also on the westbound side of Arlington Boulevard, the shared-use path will be extended to pass under the 10th Street Bridge, which it doesn't do now- it follows the ramp up to 10th street itself. Presumably, this also means that the trail will be extended and improved, since there's currently a "deadzone" between 10th St and Pershing Drive.Well, not exactly- there's a sidewalk that goes along the 10th street on-ramp. In fact, the whole "trail" section right now between Courthouse Road and 10th Street is a sidewalk, so maybe they'll build an actual shared-use path there. These trail improvements would be vastly preferable to anything done on the Fort Myer side of Arlington Boulevard. My only concern about this stretch is how the trail will interact with the car traffic entering and exiting westbound Arlington Boulevard since I don't think there will stop lights anywhere. Maybe they can get some cool blinking "watch out for us" crossing lights like they have in Shirlington. 
Anyway, I've got an email into the Arlington County planning staff to find out if I'm even remotely correct in how this is going to work and I'll update if I ever hear anything back.

1 comment:

  1. The trail on the Ft. Meyer side of the street could actually be quite useful for this bike commuter. As I understand it, it terminates at N. Rolfe street but that is right where the the Arlington Blvd side road begins, which you can take to Ft. Meade St to Rosslyn or Iowa Jima paths to Memorial Bridge. I would cross Rt. 50 at Pershing to get to this path. It's another option for getting around Ft. Myer when I don't feel like doing their silly security-theater driver's license check, better than any other for me, at least.