Joan Morris 703-259-1799
Jennifer McCord 703-259-1779
Aug. 4, 2010
VDOT INVITES FEEDBACK ON “ROAD DIET” IN RESTON
Lawyers Road cyclists, drivers asked to take online survey through Sept. 19
The new Lawyers Road configuration added bike lanes in each direction as well as a continuous left-turn lane.
CHANTILLY—It has been almost a year since a portion of Lawyers Road in Reston was reconfigured with bike lanes and a center-turn lane through a “road diet,” and the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is inviting feedback from drivers and cyclists using the road through a short online survey.
Last summer, VDOT traffic engineers tried a non-traditional method to improve safety on Lawyers Road: Reducing the road from four through lanes to two between Reston Parkway and Myrtle Lane, and repainting with a continuous, two-way, left-turn lane down the center and a five-foot bike lane in each direction.
“While removing travel lanes seems unusual, these types of reconfigurations are known to reduce crashes, improve safety and enhance mobility for bicyclists and motorists,” said Randy Dittberner, VDOT traffic engineer. “As we evaluate this project, we’d like to gauge the impressions of those actually using the road’s new configuration and bike lanes.”
While VDOT traffic engineers have not yet received final statistics, crashes at this location are expected to drop at least 20 percent. The two-way turn-lane will help prevent rear-end crashes, which accounted for 15 of 56 crashes here over the last three years. A buffer between travel lanes to reduce head-on crashes, and speed reduction from eliminating passing are among other benefits of the configuration.
This stretch of Lawyers Road was the first “road diet” executed in northern Virginia, and was considered an ideal location because one travel lane in each direction could handle rush-hour traffic volumes. Lawyers Road handles about 10,000 vehicles a day between Reston Parkway and Myrtle Lane.
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