Tysons IT Company to Add 162 Jobs with Expansion — Gov. Ralph Northam announced on Friday (April 30) that technology security company Ridgeline International, Inc. will invest $1.75 million and create 162 new jobs to expand operations at its headquarters in Tysons. Founded in 2015, Ridgeline started with five employees and now has more than 200 workers with an emphasis on hiring veterans. [Office of the Governor]
I-66 Construction to Close Gallows Road Lanes Overnight — “Gallows Road over I-66 will be reduced to a single travel lane in each direction nightly Monday, May 3, through Saturday, May 8, from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. The northbound side of Gallows Road will be closed with two-way traffic running on the southbound side.” [VDOT]
Vienna Farmers Market Returns — The Vienna Farmers Market came back this weekend and will be outside the Vienna Community Center from 8 a.m. to noon every Saturday until Oct. 30. It is one of dozens of farmers markets that have started opening around Fairfax County this spring. [Town of Vienna/Twitter]
Northern Virginia Could Reach Community Immunity This Summer — “A year to the day after Northern Virginia hit its peak number of hospitalizations for COVID-19, the University of Virginia predicted the region could reach community immunity from the virus by June or July…Based on current vaccine acceptance and vaccine update levels, the region could be the first in Virginia to achieve immunity among adults.” [Inside NoVA]
Removal of Asphalt W&OD Trail in Falls Church to Begin — Removal of the existing asphalt Washington and Old Dominion trail and preparation of the new trail’s subsurface is set to begin this week as part of the Dual Trails Project in the City of Falls Church. Sections of the trail will be inaccessible for about four weeks each during work to install new pavement. The project is expected to be completed by August. [Falls Church News-Press]
Lane Closed on Old Meadow Road Today — “The left lane of Old Meadow Road heading toward Route 123 will be closed for several hours beginning at 9 a.m. Friday, April 16, to permit minor asphalt repairs. This work was originally scheduled for Saturday, April 3.” [Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project]
Tension over Alleged Racism at Football Game Continues — Wakefield High School community members issued a letter on Wednesday (April 14) calling for a formal apology from Marshall High School in relation to a March 5 football game where players allegedly used racial slurs. Marshall’s coaching staff and parents have disputed that account, but some students recently released a statement criticizing their school for its handling of the incident. [Patch]
D.C. Airport Unveils New Addition — “After nearly 25 years, officials at Reagan National Airport on Thursday unveiled a much-anticipated addition, a sleek 14-gate concourse that will mark the end of operations of the much-maligned Gate 35X.” [The Washington Post]
Falls Church City Too Small for Retail Shopping — Even as Falls Church pursues a sizable mixed-use developments, Councilmember Ross Litkenhous says the city lacks the foot traffic or surface parking needed to attract retail merchants like Urban Outfitters or Macys. The city’s proximity to Tysons and Merrifield, though, means that residents still have many options nearby. [Falls Church News-Press]
Construction on the Transform 66 Outside the Beltway project will continue disrupting travel at the I-66 and I-496 interchange in Dunn Loring this week.
Overnight lane closures and traffic stoppages will begin at 10 p.m. today (Monday) on I-495 South, whose general purpose lanes will be reduced to a single travel lane from Route 7 (Leesburg Pike) approaching I-66 to accommodate overhead bridge work and partial demolition of the I-66 West bridge over I-495 South.
The Virginia Department of Transportation says drivers should expect periodic stoppages of up to 20 minutes between midnight and 4 a.m., though the lane closures will last until 5 a.m. on Tuesday. The 495 Express Lanes will not be affected.
The 495 lane closures will take effect again during the same time frame on Thursday (April 8) and Friday (April 9).
That final day will coincide with more substantial closures planned for I-66.
On Friday and Saturday (April 10), all westbound lanes approaching I-495 will be closed from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. so that construction crews can install bridge beams for new ramps at the I-66/I-495 interchange, VDOT says. The ramps to I-66 West from 495 North and the 495 South Express Lanes will also be closed.
“Drivers traveling on I-66 and I-495 during this time should expect delays and should consider using alternate routes,” VDOT said.
Here are the details on those closures from VDOT:
I-66 West at I-495
- All I-66 West travel lanes will be closed at I-495 from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. both nights.
- All westbound I-66 thru-traffic will be directed to exit the interstate at Route 7 (Leesburg Pike) West, travel about one mile to the ramp for I-495 South, and then follow signs to I-66 West.
- The ramp from I-66 West to I-495 South will remain open.
- All lanes will reopen by 6 a.m.
Ramp from I-495 North to I-66 West
- The ramp will be closed from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. nightly.
- Traffic will be detoured farther north to Route 7 West, stay to the right to I-495 South, and then follow signs to I-66 West.
- The ramp will reopen by 6 a.m.
Ramp from the 495 Express Lanes South to I-66 West
- The ramp will be closed from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. nightly.
- Overhead variable message boards in the Express Lanes will direct traffic to an alternate route.
The I-66 and I-495 closures both stem from ongoing efforts to reconstruct the interchange as part of the Transform 66 project, which will extend the I-66 Express Lanes 22.5 miles from Dunn Loring to Gainesville.
“Improvements at the interchange include adding access to and from the existing 495 Express Lanes and the new I-66 Express Lanes, as well as building new connections between express and general-purpose lanes,” VDOT said.
Early Voting Underway for Vienna Town Council Election — Vienna residents can cast an early ballot in the May 4 town council election at the Fairfax County Government Center. Voters who register by April 12 can also apply for a mail absentee ballot. In-person early voting ends at 5 p.m. on May 1, and mailed ballots must be postmarked on or before Election Day and arrive at the Fairfax County Office of Elections by noon on May 7. [Town of Vienna/Twitter]
Church Street Pizza No Longer on Church Street — Vienna’s New York-style pizza eatery has moved out of its longtime home at 113 Church Street NE and into a new space at 115 Maple Avenue W, which also houses a Potomac River Running store. Church Street Pizza is still offering contact-free takeout, curbside pickup, and delivery. [Lombardi’s Pizza]
Vienna and Falls Church to Compete in Fitness Challenge — Vienna, Falls Church, and Fairfax are squaring off in the first-ever Mayors’ Fitness Challenge, which will begin on April 3 and conclude on May 29 with a winning locality being dubbed the “Most Fit Community of 2021.” Community members can register for free at any time and will be tasked with tracking their physical activity each day. [Sun Gazette/Inside NoVA]
Asphalt Work on Old Meadow Road Postponed Indefinitely — The left lane closure on Old Meadow Road approaching Route 123 in Tysons that had been scheduled to start at 9 a.m. tomorrow (Saturday) has now been “postponed until further notice.” The planned minor asphalt repair work stems from the ongoing realignment of Old Meadow Road with Capital One Tower Drive at Dolley Madison Boulevard. [Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project]
Tysons Partnership Report Shows Milestones, Struggles — Released on March 31, the Tysons Partnership’s 2021 annual report highlights the economic challenges that Tysons has faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in its hospitality, retail, and entertainment sectors. The past year has also seen a sharp drop in Metro ridership, while introducing new virtual and outdoor events, like drive-in movie screenings, and new businesses like the now-open Wegmans. [Sun Gazette]
Updated at 7:20 p.m. on 4/1/2021 — The Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project has postponed the single-lane closure on Old Meadow Road near Route 123 that was scheduled to take place tomorrow “until further notice.”
Earlier: The left lane of Old Meadow Road leading up to Route 123 in Tysons will be closed during much of the day on Saturday (April 3), the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project announced earlier this week.
Prompted by the need for “minor asphalt repairs,” the closure will encompass one block near the intersection with Old Chain Bridge Road. It will take effect at 9 a.m. with all lanes scheduled to reopen by 4 p.m.
The Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project says that, with the assistance of flaggers, traffic will be maintained in both directions, and drivers will be able to turn onto Old Meadow Road and Route 123. The parking lots at 1690 Old Meadow Road and the CityLine property will still be accessible.
“Performing this work on the weekend will minimize impacts, avoid interference with other projects along Old Meadow Road and maximize the safety motorists and pedestrians,” the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project said.
The asphalt repairs are connected to efforts to realign Old Meadow Road with Capital One Tower Drive along Route 123, work that has now been going on for a year. The Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project previously predicted that construction would be completed by the end of 2020, but this would not be the first time that the project has taken longer than expected.
The Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project is overseeing the development of Metro’s Silver Line. It is a partnership between the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), Fairfax County, Loudoun County, Town of Herndon, and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA).
The Silver Line’s first phase opened in 2014, while the second phase, which will extend the transit system into Loudoun County, is still inching toward completion.
Image via Google Maps
Commuters in Merrifield and Vienna should probably avoid traveling on Interstate 66 Friday night (March 19), as multiple lane closures and traffic stoppages are scheduled to accommodate ongoing construction work.
Eastbound I-66 will be reduced to a single travel lane at Gallows Road in Merrifield from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. so that crews can pour concrete for a new Gallows Road Bridge deck.
The Virginia Department of Transportation says that periodic stoppages of up to 20 minutes could occur between midnight and 4 a.m., but all lanes will reopen by 9 a.m. on Saturday.
There will also be lane closures on Gallows Road, which will be reduced to two travel lanes — one in each direction — from 9 p.m. Friday to 7 a.m. Saturday. Two-way traffic will be directed to the southbound side of Gallows during the closure.
“Drivers should expect delays if traveling in this area and are encouraged to use alternate routes,” VDOT says.
In addition, I-66 East and West will be reduced to one travel lane between Gallows and Nutley Street from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Saturday, when all lanes will reopen. There will be periodic traffic stoppages of up to 20 minutes between midnight and 4 a.m.
According to VDOT, this lane closure is necessary for crews to remove an overhead utility line at Cedar Lane, which will have flaggers to direct traffic into a single lane between midnight and 4 a.m.
At both Gallows Road and Cedar Lane, the construction work is part of the Transform 66 Outside the Beltway project, which will extend the I-66 express lanes 22.5 miles from the I-495 interchange in Dunn Loring to Gainesville.
VDOT notes that “all work is weather dependent and will be rescheduled if inclement conditions occur.”
Federal American Recovery Plan Will Prevent Metro Budget Cuts — Metro will not need to make the drastic service and personnel cuts proposed in its fiscal year 2022 budget, thanks to Congress’ approval of a new COVID-19 relief package that includes $1.4 billion for D.C. region transit agencies. The potential changes, which included closures of the McLean and Greensboro stations, would have taken effect in January 2022 if the advertised budget got approved. [WMATA]
Thomas Jefferson Admissions Changes Spur New Federal Lawsuit — “Fairfax County Public Schools is facing a second lawsuit over changes officials made last year to the admissions process at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, its flagship STEM magnet school. The suit, filed in federal court Wednesday, alleges the changes are discriminatory against Asian Americans and therefore violate the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution.” [The Washington Post]
Ramp Closure Planned for I-495/I-66 at Fairview Park — The ramp from southbound Interstate 495 to westbound Interstate 66 will be closed from 11 p.m. Saturday (March 13) to 7 a.m. Sunday, and again on 10 p.m. Sunday to 4 a.m. Monday. The ramp will have two exit lanes when it reopens, one of which has been closed since late January for the construction of a new ramp as part of the Transform 66 Outside the Beltway project. [Patch]
Vienna Town Council Debates Undergrounding Utilities — “Placing utility lines underground in Vienna’s Maple Avenue corridor would beautify the streetscape and improve service reliability, but at a steep cost. According to a feasibility study…presented at the Vienna Town Council’s March 8 work session, utility undergrounding in 10 locations would cost an estimated $22 million – the equivalent of about half of the town’s general-fund budget for one year.” [Sun Gazette]
Capital One Appoints New Board Members — “McLean banking giant Capital One Financial Corp. (NYSE: COF) has appointed executives from Facebook Inc. and Nike Inc. to its board of directors, the company said Tuesday. In May, shareholders will vote on the election of Ime Archibong, head of new product experimentation at Facebook, and Craig Williams, president of Jordan Brand at Nike.” [Washington Business Journal]
Vienna Fire Department to Host Two Inova Blood Drives — The Vienna Volunteer Fire Department (400 Center St. S) will hold two blood drives this spring for Inova, one from 1-7 p.m. on March 25 and the second from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on April 2. Face coverings are required at both events. [@ViennaVFD/Twitter]
Nighttime travel on Interstate 66 might require some extra planning this week due to lane closures necessitated by construction on a new Gallows Road Bridge.
Starting tonight (Monday), I-66 East will be reduced to one travel lane approaching Gallows Road from 9:30 p.m. to 5 a.m. The Virginia Department of Transportation says that, between midnight and 4 a.m., drivers should expect periodic stoppages that could last up to 20 minutes.
Traffic will be detoured onto I-66 East, which will lead to Route 7. Once on Leesburg Pike, vehicles will stay to the left, turn left at the traffic signal, and then follow road signs to I-66 West.
The I-495 express lanes ramp and one-lane I-66 East closures will take place every night through Dec. 3.
On Dec. 2 and 3, VDOT will also reduce I-66 West to one travel lane approaching Gallows Road from 9:30 p.m. to 5 a.m.
“Drivers should expect delays if traveling in this area and are encouraged to use alternate routes,” VDOT says.
Overnight lane closures have been a recurring sight around Gallows Road since mid-November, when VDOT started reconstructing the bridge over I-66 for its Transform 66 Outside the Beltway project, which will add express lanes along 22.5 miles of road from I-495 in Vienna to Gainesville.
According to VDOT, the bridge is being lengthened, widened, raised, and shifted east to align with the new I-66 Express Lanes while making room for future Gallows Road improvements.
The new bridge will also include a five-foot bike lane in both directions, a seven-foot-wide sidewalk on the northbound side of the road, and improved pedestrian and bicycle facilities tied to the Dunn Loring-Merrifield Metro Station.
The new bridge is being constructed in two phases with an expected completion date of early 2021.
Work for the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project’s Silver Line Phase 1 has been underway in Tysons.
Phase 1 for the Silver Line includes the four stations (McLean, Tysons Corner, Greensboro and Spring Hill) in Tysons along with the Wiehle-Reston East station.
Here is a roundup of recent work in Tysons for the project and what drivers and pedestrians can expect this week.
Near McLean Metro Station
People can expect a lane shift in mid-August for the realignment of Old Meadow Road with Capital One Tower Drive at Dolley Madison Boulevard (Route 123), according to the website.
“The Virginia Department of Transportation and Fairfax County requested the realignment to facilitate traffic crossing Route 123 from the Capital One complex to Old Meadow Road,” the website said. “The change is needed because of impacts caused by Silver Line construction at McLean Metrorail station.”
When the new work starts in August, crews will create a new median on Old Meadow Road at the intersection, necessitating the lane shift. The work at the intersection faced delays due to COVID, the website said.
“Crews continue to install drainage infrastructure, signal equipment, and landscaping along the south side of Old Meadow Road and the east side of Dolley Madison Boulevard to complete that part of the work,” the website said.
Crews plan to wrap up Phase 1 work along Leesburg Pike in Tysons.
By the end of this week, final clean up is expected to be done on asphalt repairs and striping, according to the project’s website.
Recently, contractors finished “upgrades for the latest ADA compliance, repaired cracked sidewalks and repaired curb and gutter along the Phase 1 alignment,” the website said.
Lane Closures in Tysons
People will also see several lane closures this week in Tysons from today (Monday) to Thursday (July 23) from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. and on Friday (July 24) from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
The closures include:
- left turn lane from 300 feet before Westwood Center Drive to Leesburg Pike.
- right lane from Route 267 to Westwood Center Drive
- left lane from 300 feet before Westpark Road to 400 feet after Westpark Road
- right lane from 600 feet before Spring Hill Road to 300 feet after Spring Hill Road
- right lane from 300 feet before Tyco Road to 300 feet before Dulles Toll Road exit ramp
The closures are for manhole and sidewalk repairs and underdrain installation.
Photo courtesy Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project
Georgetown Pike Reopened — Westbound Georgetown Pike near Bellview Road in McLean was closed earlier this morning due to a tree that fell into power lines. [Fairfax County Police/Twitter]
Sizable Sale — “The McLean estate of Janice Smith, ex-wife of former ABC News White House correspondent Sam Donaldson, has sold for $24 million.” [Washington Business Journal]
Federal Report Finds Failures With Virginia DOE — “A new federal report finds systemic failures in how the Virginia Department of Education monitors and responds to special education complaints against local school districts.” [Inside NoVa]
It’s beginning to look a lot like – a fire station! Construction of new Station 44, Scotts Run, continues to progress nicely! New station is being built as part of a development condition to meet growing needs for emergency services in Tysons area. #FCFRD pic.twitter.com/XlYfayvOow
— Fairfax Fire/Rescue (@ffxfirerescue) June 26, 2020