Local transportation officials are dreaming of a better future for Metrobus, including a 24-hour route connecting Tysons and Bethesda.
“It’s kind of setting the table large and saying what the opportunities are, and then constraining it,” said Allison Davis, vice president of planning at the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, at the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors transportation committee meeting Tuesday (May 16).
Other highlights for Fairfax County in the visionary plan include an extension of the 38B bus route to Seven Corners. Currently, the bus runs from Ballston to Farragut Square. There could also be added connections to George Mason University, a new hub for Inova Alexandria Hospital, and busing at Dulles International Airport when train service isn’t running.
At the meeting, both Davis and Peter Cafiero, managing director of intermodal planning at WMATA, highlighted interest in the Tysons-Bethesda route, which could be enabled by the Capital Beltway widening that’s now under construction.
“We’ve had a ton of comments about that Bethesda-to-Tysons connection that I think a lot of people are really keen to see,” Davis said.
After collecting feedback on the visionary network through this spring, WMATA will put together two network designs this fall. One will be a short-term network that’s immediately usable, while the other will be a revised version of the visionary network.
Changes could begin in 2024 if Metro’s board of directors approves the recommended short-term network in December.
WMATA is collaborating on the project with the Fairfax County Department of Transportation, which manages the Fairfax Connector bus system.
“We have been working with our partners at WMATA since the beginning of the process,” said Michael Felschow, planning section chief in the transit services division of FCDOT. “Our focus is to make sure our plans coordinate well with their plans.”
That coordination will involve making sure there are no gaps or duplications in service and helping to define service levels for prioritized routes, including on corridors such as Route 50, Braddock Road, Columbia Pike and Little River Turnpike.
“Our system doesn’t really provide a lot of service in these corridors, but we want to make sure we’re linking to these corridors at key terminals,” Felschow said.
Even as county staff works with WMATA, the county’s Transit Strategic Plan should remain “the driver” for FCDOT’s decision-making, Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay said. Cost efficiency should also be a “huge driver” in determining who operates different bus routes.
“I do think the vision of where these routes are and how we can make sure there’s no gaps in service and other things is absolutely an essential thing to do,” McKay said.
As currently outlined, the visionary network would require a 35% increase in funding for Metrobus. WMATA’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2024 allocates $742.9 million to Metrobus, a slight decrease from the $743.9 million budgeted in FY 2023.
The public comment period for the draft visionary network runs until June 5. Community members can weigh in on the network redesign ideas online and at pop-up events. The visionary network is part of the broader Better Bus initiative.
Map via WMATA
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The Georgetown Visitation Masqueraders proudly present
Descendants The Musical
Art House 7 warmly welcomes you to our upcoming Fall 2 session of classes starting on October 30th. We’re thrilled to offer a diverse range of mediums and flexible class lengths, catering to a wide age range, starting from as young as 2, and, of course, providing a multitude of engaging options for adults!
Our classes cover an exciting spectrum of creative mediums, including fiber arts such as knitting, modern embroidery, crochet, and sewing. We also offer classes in ceramics on the wheel, drawing, watercolor, gouache, oil, acrylic, still-life painting, and captivating Japanese Suminagashi and printmaking. One of the highlights of this session is the highly anticipated 5-week “Painting the Portrait and Figure” workshop, led by the renowned local artist, Danni Dawson.
For our younger artists, we have specially designed classes like “Art Exploration through Impressionism” for students in kindergarten through 5th grade, an engaging “Art Together” parent-child class designed for 2–4-year-olds, and a “Teen Taught Art Club” tailored for kindergarteners through 4th graders.
The Ravel Dance Company will present the beloved holiday tradition The Nutcracker. It is Christmas Eve and the Stahlbaum family’s daughter Clara has received a Nutcracker from the mysterious toymaker and godfather Herr Drosselmeyer. Follow her journey through the Pine