Work on Metro’s Bike and Ride facility for the Vienna Metro Station is finally nearing the finish line.
More than five years after it started, major construction on the project has now been completed, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority spokesperson Ian Jannetta says.
“The Bike & Ride is being readied for customer use, including inspections and final project activities (such as integrating access control to the Metro network),” Jannetta told Tysons Reporter in an email on Oct. 30. “As soon as we have a date for when customers can use the facility, we will announce it.”
The Vienna facility is Metro’s second Bike and Ride in Fairfax County after one opened at the East Falls Church Metro Station in August. The two stations will have a combined 184 spaces for riders to park their bicycles before hopping on a train or bus.
Metro’s bike parking facilities are monitored around-the-clock by security cameras and include “fix-it stations” with a tire pump, tools, and a stand for making basic repairs and adjustments, according to WMATA.
In order to access the facilities, customers need a registered SmarTrip and must fill out an online form about 24 to 48 hours in advance of their visit, though the bike and rides are free to use.
Metro’s Bike and Ride facilities were recently the subject of a critical report by the WMATA Office of the Inspector General, which reviewed the projects after receiving public complaints and a request for information from a U.S. Senate subcommittee on federal spending oversight.
Released on Oct. 16, the report found that WMATA has spent over $5.9 million on three Bike and Ride facilities that collectively provide 304 parking spaces, amounting to approximately $19,400 per space.
The inspector general also criticized the prolonged construction schedule on the Vienna and East Falls Church facilities, the lack of timely communication with the public, and gaps in financial records for the projects.
Metro started developing Bike and Ride facilities in 2011 as part of a capital program designed to expand bicycle and pedestrian amenities at its stations.
While work on a Bike and Ride at College Park in Washington, D.C., started in August 2011 and finished in May 2012, the East Falls Church and Vienna projects were delayed by construction issues and contractor disputes, including a termination of the original contract in 2016.
Jannetta says WMATA has overhauled its structure for managing capital programs since the East Falls Church and Vienna Bike and Rides started construction in February 2015.
“While it took longer than it should have to get a new contractor on board, the issues were ultimately resolved, delivering bike capacity that will benefit current Metro riders and generations of environmentally conscious riders to come,” Jannetta said.
Photo via WMATA
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