Vienna greenlights transportation study of Maple Avenue corridor

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This is a news release from the Town of Vienna published verbatim.

The Town of Vienna is commissioning a Multimodal Transportation and Land Use Study of the Maple Avenue corridor that not only is taking a look at what’s happening along the asphalt, but also at active transportation needs as well as how development might impact mobility.

The Town has contracted with Kimley-Horn, a transportation, planning, and engineering consulting firm with offices around the country, to lead the study, which is expected to wrap up by early fall. Community engagement opportunities are being built into the study process with the first community meeting to be at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 4, at Town Hall.

“We’re taking a step back to take a careful look at the transportation and mobility needs of the Maple Avenue corridor,” says Kimley-Horn Project Manager David Samba. “We’ll be looking at current and future needs as well as potential solutions that will improve mobility along Maple Avenue. A key question we’ll keep coming back to is: How can we consider the needs of all corridor users while enhancing the safety, access, and character of Maple Avenue?”

In addition to looking at Maple Avenue from James Madison Drive to Follin Lane, the study area includes Church Street from Lawyers Road to East Street as well as Courthouse Road and Locust Street.

“We’re looking at transportation along Maple Avenue in the context of the Town’s vision for the corridor to be more vibrant and pedestrian-oriented,” says Planning and Zoning Director Cindy Petkac. “We’re trying to create a place for people to gather – outside of their cars.”

The study is really about the importance of transportation in placemaking, Petkac says.

The first step in the study process, currently underway, says Samba, is to conduct an analysis of existing conditions. Among other things, Kimley-Horn will be looking at vehicle operations (travel times, queueing, intersection conditions), pedestrian and bicycle counts, transit availability, and crash data.

After that, the firm will consider what impact reasonably anticipated development over the next 10 years – both under the voluntary Maple Avenue Commercial (MAC) zone and other by-right

development – will have on corridor mobility. “We also need to factor in what’s happening regionally, such as in Tysons and with changes to I-66,” Samba says.

Finally, Kimley-Horn will draft recommendations and next steps. Public engagement events will be scheduled as each phase of the study is completed.

“We’re looking to be creative about solutions particularly related to active transportation modes,” says Public Works Director Michael Gallagher, “so that we can achieve the vision of Maple Avenue as Vienna’s main street. Results of this study will help inform the Town as we plan for future projects and identify transportation grant opportunities.”

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