News and notes from Reston (tm).

Monday, January 28, 2008

Reston Road Rules 2: Watch where you park!

Now that there won't be an awesome Metro station whisking Reston residents to the Bed-Bath-N-Beyond in Tysons Tegucigalpa, we should be thankful for the myriad park-and-ride lots and garages in the area, allowing us to live large on those awesome shiny orange-and-yellow buses. Just don't do anything stupid, like park your car in one.

Signs of trouble with the Herndon-Monroe park-and-ride garage surfaced long before the first commuter's car rolled into the $20 million facility off the Dulles Toll Road that Fairfax County opened in 1999.

Fresh cracks appeared last spring and chunks of concrete began falling away, creating safety concerns that prompted officials to fence off about 100 spaces.

A new study found "significant deterioration" in the garage roof because of the poor quality of the concrete. Drains were misplaced and inadequate for dealing with storm runoff. In some spots, water and salt had eaten through the concrete and exposed the reinforcing steel bars to corrosion. The engineering firm, Walker Parking Consultants, also questioned whether the garage had adequate supporting steel to withstand high winds or earthquakes.

The county says the building is safe but needs considerable work.
We think we'll just hitchhike.

Meanwhile, the proposed awesome improvements to Rt. 7, which include a new 29-lane elevated ramp and blinking directional signs ordering half-awake Sterling soccer moms to divert through Great Falls without stopping for coffee at the 7-11 on their way to their soul-numbing clerical jobs in McLean or wherever, have been funded. Well, actually, it's just a turn lane, but you wouldn't know that from what Great Falls residents are saying.
Some residents who live on or near Georgetown Pike appealed to the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority not to add funding to the project, arguing that adding a turn lane and lengthening the existing turn lane will channel more traffic onto the scenic two-lane road that cuts through the center of their community and is already slowed by existing bottlenecks.

"Georgetown Pike is truly an historic road, having under its surface in a number of places the oldest engineered roadbed in this country -- roadbed engineered by George Washington," Eleanor Anderson, a member of the Great Falls Citizens Association's transportation committee, wrote to the authority.
Maybe they should just put up a sign: George Washington Sat in Traffic Here.

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