Northern Virginia District Transportation Update, Fall 2022
John D. Lynch, P.E.
We have all heard the phrase “culture of safety” used and overused across multiple industries and work spaces. There is nothing inherently wrong with the phrase, but when it comes to describing VDOT, it just doesn’t quite fit.
In VDOT’s Northern Virginia District, safety transcends culture, and instead is the core foundation of an altruistic workforce. Care, concern, and responsibility for community is at the heart of everything we do. After all, Northern Virginia is not simply a community that we serve, but one that we are a part of.
For this first time, the Northern Virginia District was the winner of the VDOT Safety Excellence Award Program (SEAP) Cup this year. The yearly internal statewide competition is based on district-wide staff training, facility safety inspections, and staff-initiated safety ideas and videos. In the past year, our OSHA reportable rate, the percentage of injury or illness reported to OSHA, dropped from 3.37 to 1.65 percent. Also, our lost days, the number of days employees stay out of work after an injury or illness, plummeted from 355 to 19.
Where the end result of our projects is top of mind, it doesn’t supersede safety. Every step of the process of projects in development, design, and construction takes into account the safety of all users of our transportation system—not only in the present, but well into the future. Every new project is designed with multimodal facilities, including a brand-new pedestrian bridge over the Beltway in Tysons, and 11 miles of multi-use paths adjacent to I-66 that are set to open this winter.
We’re also retrofitting old infrastructure with a focus on safety. Many systemic pedestrian safety improvements, including connecting sidewalks, crosswalk installation and enhancements, pedestrian signal upgrades that make it faster and easier to cross a street, rapid flashing beacons for visibility enhancements, and a pedestrian hybrid beacon have been installed.
The Northern Virginia District has also been a key player in Fairfax County’s “Take a Moment” pedestrian safety awareness campaign. Multiple Fairfax County agencies and Board offices, along with VDOT, partnered together to develop a community campaign intended to keep every user of our transportation system safe by consolidating the collective might of dozens of communications channels for this important message.
In this update, you will read more about our FY 2022 accomplishments as well as what is upcoming for the Northern Virginia District in FY 2023— all with a focus on safety, because actions speak louder than words.
John D. Lynch, P.E.
NOVA District Engineer
About the document:
The 2022 Transportation Update provides an overview of the current, recently completed, and proposed projects in VDOT's Northern Virginia District as well as a report of the district's overall performance during the fiscal year. This publication serves as a reference guide for state legislators and local officials and is updated annually.
For more information about the projects and initiatives covered in this document, contact the Northern Virginia District Public Affairs Office at firstname.lastname@example.org. View 2021 Northern Virginia District Transportation Update