Segment of South Walter Reed Drive between Arlington Mill Drive and Four Mile Run Drive, including the intersections
In May 2018, the County Board approved a $1.8 million contract to A & M Concrete Corporation for this project.
Construction began in fall 2018 and was completed in fall 2019.
About the Project
The section of Walter Reed Drive between Arlington Mill Drive and Four Mile Run Drive connects two of the County’s busiest multi-use trails (Washington & Old Dominion and the Four Mile Run Trail). It is also a major access point to the Shirlington commercial area and supports much of Arlington County’s fleet of service vehicles that are based at facilities located just off of Arlington Mill Drive.
This project intends to improve the transportation facilities on this short, but critical, segment of Walter Reed Drive and encourage more bicycle and pedestrian trips, improve access to Shirlington and better support drivers and County service vehicles that rely on this connection.
Following completion of the proposed conceptual plan in late 2014 and through fall 2015, County staff gathered feedback on the plan from nearby residents and other stakeholders. The preliminary conceptual plan was revised as a result of public comments gathered during the outreach process and County staff’s further review and analysis of the plan.
The proposed final scope includes the following components to achieve the project’s intent (refer to the images on the right that illustrate the proposed improvements):
- New crosswalks and curb ramps, compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) at both intersections
- ADA-compliant bus stops
- Two multi-use trails, 10-feet wide and two-directional on each side of Walter Reed Drive
- A utility/buffer strip between the trails and vehicle lanes (similar to Joyce Street trail near I-395)
- Restriping automobile travel and turn lanes to be 11.5-feet wide at outside lanes, 10-feet at interior lane and 11-feet wide at turning lane (existing travel lanes are all 10-feet wide)
- Complete technology upgrades at the Walter Reed Drive/Four Mile Run Drive and Walter Reed Drive/Arlington Mill Drive intersections, including new traffic signals, pedestrian signals, lights, LED signage, etc.
- Realign westbound Arlington Mill Drive to one left turn and one right turn lane in order to improve crossing for bicyclists and pedestrians. On June 8, 2016, Arlington County staff presented the analysis of the proposed realignment to the Shirlington Civic Association.
- Improve slip lane crossing at Walter Reed Drive/Arlington Mill Drive intersection. Slip lane improvements (similar to existing slip lanes at the Fairfax Drive/North Glebe Road and North Glebe Road/Wilson Boulevard intersections):
- Larger island with plantings and ADA-compliant curb ramps
- Raised crosswalk between Four Mile Run Trail and island
- Realign Four Mile Run Trail’s approach of crossing to improve visibility to and from trail users and crosswalk
- Install appropriate signal/signage technologies to better support crosswalk users. Staff presented possible signage and technology options from the signal/signage matrix and posted to the website in October 2015. After additional research and consideration of all received comments, engineering staff have selected a variation of option 2 – this uses a group of signs, rather than just one sign, to emphasize the crossing.
- Pedestrian and bicycle way-finding signage (to be installed by the County’s Trail Wayfinding Project)
- Street lighting, both sides of Walter Reed Drive
A temporary, or pilot, installation of the Arlington Mill Drive lane realignment at the Walter Reed Drive/Arlington Mill Drive intersection allowed staff to field test signal timing and enabled residents to try out a partial implementation of the crossing improvements prior to full project construction. The temporary lane realignment was installed in June 2017 and remained in place until project construction.
During the test period, staff monitored the intersection to determine the appropriate signal and marking adjustments necessary to manage all modes of traffic at the intersection, so this information could be determined prior to project construction.
Community outreach during the conceptual development process (Winter 2014/15 through Winter 2015/16) targeted properties within one block of the project site, as well as several area stakeholder groups, including:
- Arlington Bicycle Advisory Committee
- Arlington Pedestrian Advisory Committee
- Claremont Citizens Association
- Concord Mews Civic Association
- Douglas Park Civic Association
- Fairlington-Shirlington Neighborhood Conservation Area
- Heatherlea Condominiums
- Nauck Civic Association
- Shirlington Dogs
- Shirlington Civic Association
- West Village at Shirlington
- Windgates Condominiums I, II and III
Funding for this project is provided by a number of County sources, including the Decal Fee Program, Bus Program, Bridge Program, and the Transportation Systems & Signals Program. Additional funding is provided by the Virginia Department of Transportation's Revenue Sharing Program.