Waterway Traffic Calming Task Force
Thursday, January 7, 2010
The Waterway Traffic Calming Task Force met Thursday, January 7, 2010
at 7:30 pm. All members of the Task Force and Stuart Feldstein, LBA liaison, were present. Observers were: Ramon Garcia. George Erikson, Brian Brunsvold and Kim Smith.

This was a short meeting to discuss correspondence from Mason District to the Task Force. This document is posted in full, with an accompanying e-mail from Clara Pizana, Office of Mason District Supervisor Penny Gross, on the LBA Website under Waterway Traffic as “Engineering Report from Mason District & VDOT”(http://www.lakebarcroft.org/community/traffic.html).

The posted item is the response to the Task Force’s request that VDOT and FCDoT revisit their rejection of a traffic circle at Crosswoods and Waterway and a “pork chop” shaped island at the end of the Potterton Bridge. VDOT and FCDoT had said that they would come back out to the two locations and take new measurements. The Task Force did not participate in these remeasurements, but at least one LB resident saw them doing the measurements and dotted circles were painted on the road at each of these intersections. The VDOT/FCDoT report states that the two devices are again rejected, for reasons including insufficient sight lines and room for large vehicles to turn. However, the report was very vague, provided no measurements or specific explanations, and seemed to have measured a circle at the end of the Potterton Bridge rather than a pork chop shaped island. The Task Force wants better and more specific information on why the traffic circles were rejected, including exact measurements and the actual engineering report generated by VDOT and FCDoT engineers.

VDOT and FCDoT did take into consideration the Task Force’s request to paint traffic calming markings on Waterway Drive between Half Moon Drive and Cavalier Corridor. Their suggestion was a little different than the zig zags the Task Force favored. VDOT and FCDoT proposed narrowing the lanes on each side to 11 feet with paint, which would provide more room for residents to turn safely out of their driveways and more room for residents and their guests to park safely on the side of the road. The Task Force liked this suggestion (which was not previously suggested by VDOT or FCDoT as an option).

The e-mail from Clara Pizana, offers to “coordinate a follow up meeting with transportation staff.” The Task Force will request a written engineering report on the traffic circles and then follow up on the suggestion for another meeting with Mason District, FCDoT and VDOT.

Depending on the report and the meeting, the Task Force is considering presenting the situation to Penny Gross, again to Senator Whipple and possibly to the press (which has taken an interest to similar situations in Takoma Park and elsewhere).

The meeting was then opened up for observers to comment.

George Erickson – It was said in June that you needed to do your own engineering report. Now time has been lost. There are fuzzy facts. It is important to find out where the heart of the resistance lies: FCDoT, VDOT, Mason District, funding, precedent? The Task Force needs to do its homework and understand the problem. You could get an engineer from the community. The LBA should be able to pay for an engineer to prove traffic circles are feasible (or not). A written request should be made to the board.

Kim Smith: You don’t need an engineer necessarily to do proper measurements and CAD drawings. Someone could get that far without needing an engineer.

Kevin’s response: We can have another conversation with Kamal Suliman of VDOT in person or by phone. Let’s see what Mason District comes back with in terms of a more detailed engineering report, then we will better know how to respond.