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Belmont Ridge Expansion to Six Lane Highway Instead of Four

Discussion in 'Broadlands Community Issues' started by OSimpson, Apr 7, 2012.

  1. Mom8386

    Mom8386 Member

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    This morning ~7 (and this afternoon ~4:15) there were cars parked at BRR and Ryan, BRR and Evergreen Mills and Evergreen Mills and Gum Springs. I assume they were counting vehicles. I wonder if this has anything to do with the proposed expansion.
  2. loudgrowler

    loudgrowler Member

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    Not sure 6 lanes are needed but dop hope it gets expanded to at least 4 lanes. It's a dangerous road needs to be widened and could use a traffic light or two as well. It can be tough to get out onto BRR from Truro Parish or Croson. I dread the day my teenager starts to drive along BRR to get to BWHS. Really like how some portions are already expanded and hope they continue to widen the rest from Route 7 to Gum Spring. Do feel a bit bad for the homes in some of the neighborhoods backing up to BRR but we have lived in Broadlands for about 8 years now, well before places like Village of Waxpool were built and there has always been talk of expanding BRR. I would always use caution buying a home in a growing county especially along a major road.
  3. GAJones

    GAJones New Member

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    It apepars that a compromise is coming to keep the ultimate design of BRR at 4 lanes.

    Back in 1991, the CTP designated BRR as 6 lanes based on projected traffic needs. However, as the County grew, several other north-south roadway began to be built or expanded (LC Parkway, Glouchester, Claiborne, Ashburn Villlage, ROute 28, etc) which significantly changed projected traffic assumptions on BRR (which is wht the CTP is re-evaluated every 5 years). The last time the CTP was updated, traffic patters were grossly inflated on BRR (valided by an independed consultant and local residents). For example, the traffic model (which is no longer is reconized as being valid by industry experts) has assumed that 13,000 cars will be coming off of old Waxpool road every day...and that 12,000 cars per day will be coming out of the parking lot at Tillet park!!!! This is why residents are so incensed!

    The good news is that traffic lights are going in at Truro Parish soon and are proffered at Crosen. And once Claiborne gets completed, that will also provide another alternative route to BWHS.
  4. Mom8386

    Mom8386 Member

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    What's the latest on Claiborne in terms of when it's scheduled to be completed? We live in Forest Manor and it will run through our neighborhood, which is the reason we didn't pick a lot that backs up to it. Some of our neighbors are in denial and don't think it will be completed. I've mentioned it a couple of times and have gotten some weird comments back. What I want finished is Loudoun County Pkwy because we commute to Chantilly for work and in the years we've been in Ashburn the commute has gotten ridiculously long for the distance.
  5. nadir

    nadir New Member

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    There was an article in this week's Ashburn Today about this. The contract to design the remaining portion was just (or is just about to be) awarded. Design will take from 12-15 months, and if construction begins on the heels of design, the link will be complete approximately 2 years from today.

    Not sure about funding, though, as that is always a problem.
  6. PDILLM

    PDILLM Member

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    @Nadir- Are you talking about Clairborne or Loudoun County Parkway?
  7. nadir

    nadir New Member

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    Claiborne. Apologies for not clarifying earlier.
  8. OSimpson

    OSimpson Certified Master Naturalist

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    A friend's manifesto for free-market sustainability

    As many readers have probably noticed, there are those who now contend that planning walkable, green communities is a big-government sponsored, gross violation of your property rights, all orchestrated by none other than the United Nations. (Amazing, isn’t it?) My friend John Holtzclaw, an urban analyst of some repute (almost two decades ago, John began the analysis that exposed the high household costs of sprawl-related driving), has some answers. John understands that, actually, government regulation (supported by financial interests) has tended to favor sprawl, not walkable neighborhoods. Yes, we should be wary of some regulation; but not for the reasons that the fear-mongering crowd suggests. A more sustainable future lies in unleashing choice, not restricting it.

    John has laid it out in an article published earlier this week in the Sierra Club Compass. With his permission, I am now sharing it in its entirety with you:

    During nine years as a nuclear engineer in the 1960s for Westinghouse and GE, I visited many vibrant and exciting cities. Yet, while Paris, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Rome, Istanbul and Cairo boomed, NYC, DC, Chicago and San Francisco declined as folk abandoned vibrant sidewalks for the suburbs. Having lived most of my life in sprawl, I puzzled and lamented this, and returned to grad school to find out why. I discovered that the decline was not accidental, but government policy to build suburbs condemning you to drive every trip. An auto and oil company plot? Well, yes!

    Since WWII, our government and the banks have worked to destroy central cities and limit citizens’ choices:

    Federal housing programs, including mortgage guarantees and tax write-offs, have pumped trillions of dollars into housing construction. Moreover, central cities were red-lined, denying loans to fix leaky plumbing or roofs, to restore or to buy housing. Consequently, buildings deteriorated. These policies have softened recently, but financing housing integrated with local shopping is still a challenge, and housing with less than one parking place per unit is illegal in many places.

    Zoning laws, propagated by Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover, mandated low-density single-family housing in order to qualify for federal home loans. And mandated up to five vehicle off-street (garage) parking per house, wide streets, and big side- and front-yard setbacks, while prohibiting cafes or markets in residential areas. Some even prohibit sidewalks. Walking is dangerous and difficult – effectively illegal.

    Federally funded freeway construction bulldozed vast tracks of central city housing and commerce, destroying and dividing vibrant neighborhoods while bringing in hazardous traffic, noise, and pollution. These same freeways connected central city jobs to vast stretches of farmland and natural areas, facilitating speculative housing development, while loading infrastructure costs onto the rest of the community. Taxing central city residents to subsidize sprawl.

    Unfortunately, residents of the resulting sprawling communities have to drive every time they want a loaf of bread, or to visit a bank, leaving them stuck with $1000 or higher monthly auto costs. This drove many into poverty and left them underwater when the housing bubble burst. Many sprawl communities are impoverished due to unaffordable maintenance for deteriorating street, water, and sewer systems.

    And when their children grow up, they want to live in communities which give them trip choices, including trips short enough to be walked or biked, with good, reliable buses, trams and subways. They also want to be near cafes, jobs and shopping so they can live richly rather than spending their days driving. A new study from US PIRG confirms that younger folks are driving less, preferring other ways to get around.

    Cities were shaped by free market forces before sprawl zoning. They were dense, walkable and convenient. Yes, zoning is needed to prevent meat-rendering plants, refineries, power plants and roads with heavy diesel traffic near residential areas. But why outlaw cafes, clean jobs, shopping, and recreation? Smart Growth restores these vibrant neighborhoods and vastly reduces travel costs.

    Many suburbs and neighborhoods built up before the car dominated planning are fairly compact. Just widening sidewalks, narrowing lanes and intersections, adding bike lanes and rezoning for apartments, condos and local stores can increase their convenience and give residents healthy and pleasant alternatives to driving. Repurposing suburban shopping centers, with condos, apartments and a narrow street network replacing the parking lot, can restore vitality and provide a convenient neighborhood for residents and nearby sprawl.

    Yet, when our communities try to reform zoning laws in order to allow the market to again produce convenient communities for us, someone is organizing people to disrupt and stop progress. Could it be that Big Oil wants to keep Americans addicted to fossil fuels?

    -- John Holtzclaw, volunteer co-lead for the Sierra Club Green Transportation Campaign
  9. Mom8386

    Mom8386 Member

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    The Sierra club does have an agenda. I don't think it's a big conspiracy, it's about numbers, period. It's impossible for everyone to live close to where they work for a variety of reasons. Let's look at the fact that most of my neighbors don't work in a city perse, most work outside the beltway. People moved to the suburbs to have larger yards and bigger homes for their families. One of the reasons we don't live in Brambleton or even Broadlands is because we don't want to live on top of our neighbors, no matter how "walkable" it may be.

    The fact is, Loudoun and Fairfax are popular places to live and Prince William is growing rapidly too. I'm not sure how that article has anything to do with widening Belmont Ridge Road. What city exactly has been bulldozed around here?
  10. OSimpson

    OSimpson Certified Master Naturalist

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    The article may not directly have anything to do with Belmont Ridge Road. It has a lot to do with giving people who are interested to learn more about the other developments and their experiences, impacts on the environment as well as their future.

    I like to see what is happening around outside of Loudoun. I don't think Tysons Corner for example changing their whole heavy traffic area to make it walkable for no reason. Cost of oil is not going down. Which means cost of living, from food to clothes we wear will go up. I think it is a very good example to read and realize that it could be much wiser to fix around what we have instead of making the roads bigger to promote more sprawl.
  11. Buffettbassman

    Buffettbassman Troll Extrordinare'

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    Personally, I'd rather see the money spent on this than the bleeping Metro to Ashburn project! And twice on Sunday.
  12. Buffettbassman

    Buffettbassman Troll Extrordinare'

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    The Sierra Club doesn't have an agenda? Did you really type those words??? How could it be that an advocacy group...doesn't have an agenda??? Wow... I belong to the NRA and the Issak Walton Leauge... and everyone other organization I belong to has an agenda.
  13. Buffettbassman

    Buffettbassman Troll Extrordinare'

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    I find it odd that a real estate agent would recommend to people to sell their homes immediately if you lived on abutting Belmont Ridge Road. Makes you go hmmmm...
  14. Buffettbassman

    Buffettbassman Troll Extrordinare'

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    Steve, not impugning you in any way personally. I've dealt with a lot of licensed RA's that didn't tell the truth either. So... come now. The license isn't virtuous.
  15. Mr. Linux

    Mr. Linux Senior Member & Moderator Staff Member

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    Buffettbassman, meet the 'Quote' button on the bottom right of each post. 'Quote' button, meet Buffettbassman.

    There, now you're friends and can hang out ;)
  16. Buffettbassman

    Buffettbassman Troll Extrordinare'

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    Ah yes, the quote button. The Quoteth Man Cometh! Forgot about that...

    thx
  17. Mom8386

    Mom8386 Member

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    Cost of oil would go down if groups like the Sierra Club and others didn't see drilling and refineries in this country as evil. It's simple economics. I recently saw an article that says the US has 20% of the oil under us, as opposed to 2% that the President wrongly stated.

    Tysons is changing to more walkability BECAUSE the metro is coming. People have to be able to use the metro, which means being able to walk to and from it and local amenities. It wouldn't be happening otherwise.

    I think a lot of well meaning people are misinformed by some of these environmental groups.

    My husband and I will be glad when they finish these road improvements. It shouldn't take us 1/2 hour to drive less than 15 miles to work. So, while we live close to work, it will NEVER be walkable. We also are all for the metro. I think it will be great to be able to jump on the metro to go into DC and not have to worry about parking. Having grown up in PG county (when it was a very nice place to live) I know this area very well and getting in and out of the city has gotten worse and worse over the years but that's due to the booming economic growth this area has seen. We all benefit from how this area has grown.
  18. Villager

    Villager Ashburn Village Resident

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    I like the idea of clean and renewable resources more than the idea of drilling for oil or nuclear power.
  19. OSimpson

    OSimpson Certified Master Naturalist

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    [​IMG]

    I couldn't resist. It can be scary to think what the "agenda" those environmentalists may have ;-) I know few of them..
  20. nova_southernwalk

    nova_southernwalk Member

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