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Fairfax County seeks public input on study of possible Gallows Road improvements

Gallows Road approaching the Dunn Loring Metro station area (staff photo by Angela Woolsey)

The Fairfax County Department of Transportation is ready to take a hard look at the future of Gallows Road.

The department will introduce a Gallows Road Multimodal Study with two public meetings next week, seeking feedback on enhancing mobility and safety along the major road between Tysons and Annandale. It will also give an update on the current travel conditions.

According to FCDOT communications head Freddy Serrano, the study is needed to address various transportation and connectivity challenges in the Gallows Road corridor.

“[Those include] pedestrian and bicycle facilities, limited mobility options, traffic conditions, and barriers created by I-495,” he said. “It aims to explore opportunities to mitigate these barriers and improve multimodal mobility between the planned land uses on the east and west sides of the interstate.”

Serrano says the goal is to find solutions and improve accessibility for everyone who uses the corridor, while supporting planned development.

Merrifield in particular is poised for growth. This spring, the county designated proposals to redevelop aging buildings in the area as top priorities for review, and plans to convert former Inova office buildings into live/work units recently raised concerns about traffic backups at the Gallows and Gatehouse Road intersection.

“Additionally, the study is essential for securing funding and planning for transportation infrastructure projects that align with the goals of the comprehensive plan and accommodate future development,” Serrano said.

The study stems from a comprehensive plan amendment that the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors approved in 2019, opening up the Merrifield Suburban Center to more mixed-use development. With the vote, the board also directed staff to:

  • Conduct a comprehensive study of multimodal transportation opportunities
  • Study the barriers to connectivity in the Merrifield suburban center created by I-495, and opportunities to mitigate the barriers
  • Develop a funding plan for the transportation infrastructure improvements recommended in the Merrifield suburban center comprehensive plan.

The study started late last year, and it’s expected to wrap up by 2024.

“Overall, the study aims to improve transportation infrastructure and connectivity within the Merrifield suburban center and along Gallows Road to support sustainable development and enhance mobility for residents and stakeholders in the area,” Serrano said.

The first meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 19. at 7 p.m. and will be virtual. A second meeting will be held in person at Luther Jackson Middle School (3020 Gallows Road) on Wednesday, Sept. 20 at 7 p.m.

Comments will be accepted until the end of the business day on Friday, Oct. 6.