Tysons, VA

strike against the contractor of Metrobus could affect service by the Fairfax Connector.

The union that represents Fairfax Connector drivers indicated that a strike is possible amid an ongoing labor dispute with Transdev, the operations contractor of the Fairfax Connector service.

The county has recently warned that ongoing negotiations for a new labor agreement with the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1764 could result in service delays. 

Here’s more from the county:

The Fairfax Connector operations contractor, Transdev, is currently negotiating a new labor agreement with the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1764, which represents Fairfax Connector drivers and mechanics. Even though Fairfax County is not a party to any labor negotiations between Transdev and labor unions, Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) has encouraged negotiations in good faith with the goal of completing a new contract prior to the expiration of the current one on Nov. 30, 2019.  

FCDOT strives to provide effective communications and excellent customer service to our customers. We understand that you depend on us to take you where you need to go with reliable service. If the current negotiations are not successful and labor action occurs, FCDOT will communicate with passengers about service impacts and travel alternatives. 

The county offers updated about Fairfax Connector service online. Residents can also sign up for email service alerts through the county’s BusTracker.

This story was written by Fatimah Waseem 

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New Route 7 Rapid Bus System Plans — “A new conceptual engineering report lays out 18 specific bus rapid station locations from Tysons to Alexandria. It also details the spots where buses would have their own lanes in the middle of the road or on the outside of the road, and where buses would share lanes with car traffic.” [WTOP]

Update on Park Police Shooting of Tysons Man — “The two U.S. Park Police officers who fatally shot unarmed motorist Bijan Ghaisar in 2017 will not be charged with any crimes in connection with the incident, federal prosecutors said Thursday. The decision came just days before the second anniversary of the slaying.” [Washington Post]

Orange Line Work Next Year — “Orange Line trains could run on a single-track at West Falls Church, and Orange and Silver Line trains could pass through East Falls Church without stopping. The closures would run as long as May 23 (Memorial Day weekend) through about Aug. 28 (before Labor Day weekend).” [WTOP]

Residents Displaced From Falls Church Fire — On Saturday, firefighters battled a “fire in a garden-style apartment building in the 7300 block of Lee Highway in the Falls Church area of Fairfax County. Multiple people have been rescued.” [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue/Twitter]

Questions About American Legion Bridge’s Reconstruction? — The Washington Business Journal has answers about how much the bridge work will cost, who is paying for it and more. [Washington Business Journal]

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Metro ridership might be plummeting overall, but ridership in the Tysons area is continuing to increase.

All four stations in the Tysons area saw increased ridership in the spring of 2019 as compared to the year before, continuing an upward trend this year.

The Northern Virginia Transportation Commission’s new stats compared ridership in April, May and June of 2019 with the same period in 2018.

Ridership at the McLean Metro station by the new Capital One headquarters has continued to spike. Out of the four, the McLean station saw the largest increase in ridership during the three-month period, rising 25% over the last year.

On the other side of Tysons, the Greensboro Metro station spiked to 18%.

Meanwhile, ridership at the Spring Hill station increased 7% and Tysons Corner station increased 5%.

“Ridership at the McLean station has now gone up dramatically for three quarters in a row: first by 18.6%, then 20.6% and now 25%,” Tysons Partnership tweeted, thanking Capital One and The MITRE Corporation.

As for Greensboro, the partnership pointed to Meridian Group’s The Boro development.

“Ridership at the Greensboro station has now gone up dramatically for two quarters in a row: first by 18.4% and now by 18%,” Tysons Partnership tweeted.

Graph via Tysons Partnership/Twitter

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A new chicken-focused restaurant plans to open just a short walk away from the Dunn Loring-Merrifield Metro station.

Building permits indicate that GAMA Chicken & BBQ is coming to 2727 Merrilee Drive, Suite G.

The eatery is looking to serve wine, beer and mixed beverages, according to the liquor license application in the window of the spot.

The restaurant will join a plethora of restaurants and retailers, like Lost Dog Cafe and Blackfinn Ameripub, on the ground floor of apartment buildings right by the Metro station.

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Work planned for four Metro stations next summer will impact riders in Vienna, Merrifield and Falls Church.

The Vienna, Dunn Loring, West Falls Church and East Falls Church Metro stations on the Orange Line are slated to be affected next summer, along with four Green Line stations in Maryland. The work is a part of a multi-year project to reconstruct 20 station platforms.

Currently, Metro shut down Yellow and Blue lines south of Ronald Reagan National Airport this summer.

While that reconstruction plan was announced more than a year ago, more details on the Orange Line shutdown are set to get announced in September or October, WTOP reported.

“It is unclear how much of the work will be done with total shutdowns, and how much could involve single-tracking,” WTOP reported.

Until the plans are announced, let Tysons Reporter know in the comments if the Metro work next summer will impact you.

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(Updated at 9 a.m.) If you faced delays on Metro’s Silver Line in the Tysons area during yesterday’s evening commute, you might have a goose to blame.

A Metro spokesperson confirmed that an injured goose caused the delay yesterday.

The Fairfax County Police Department said that the Animal Protection Police Officer removed the goose, which had an injured wing and leg, and took it to a nearby animal hospital. Police did not have an update to share about the goose’s condition Tuesday (July 30) evening.

Metrorail Info tweeted around 4:30 p.m. Monday (July 29) that an animal on the tracks at Tysons Corner was causing single-tracking and delays in both directions between the Tysons Corner and McLean Metro stations.

Shortly after 6 p.m., another tweet said that single-tracking had ended, but that residual delays continued in both directions.

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A person has been struck by a train at the Dunn Loring-Merrifield Metro station.

The incident was first reported by Fairfax County Fire and Rescue around 2:15 p.m. Firefighters were “working to access” the person struck by the train, the fire department said via social media; the person has since been extricated from under the train and taken to a local hospital.

Orange Line trains heading toward Vienna are instead terminating at West Falls Church, Metro said, with shuttle buses running between the West Falls Church and Vienna stations.

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Botched Bolts Behind Metro Mishap — “A Metro train pulled apart on the tracks last year because the agency was using the wrong parts, installing parts that were used incorrectly, and not checking to ensure things were done right… The 51-page report approved Thursday by the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission details a litany of failures that led up to an eight-car Silver Line train bound for D.C. coming apart outside the McLean Station on Aug. 25.” [WTOP]

New School Rules — “The new Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook, which was approved by the board on Thursday, includes more than two dozen changes meant to standardize the way discipline is handed down in the school system.” The changes go into effect this fall. [WTOP]

County Seeking Tysons Traffic Solutions — “A number of options to relieve traffic congestion around McLean and Tysons were presented at a previous community meeting. Fairfax County’s transportation department is seeking feedback on those options, and the deadline for comments has been extended to July 31.” [Patch]

Large Music Library in Falls Church Home — “A long-time local resident who is once again kicking off the Creative Cauldron’s summer cabaret series also happens to curate one of the most interesting home collections of the Tin Pan Alley era of music.” [Falls Church News-Press]

Virginia Nabs Top Spot on CNBC List — CNBC ranked Virginia #1 on its recently released “America’s Top States for Business” list. [CNBC]

Firework Sparklers Behind McLean House Fire — “The garage of a McLean home caught fire on [July 3] due to firework sparklers that were improperly disposed of.” [ABC7]

Egyptian Art Coming to Falls Church — “Falls Church Arts (FCA) is excited to be the first gallery to exhibit this unique collection of Egyptian Contemporary art by these wonderful artists from the Luxor, Alexandria, and Cairo regions of Egypt. These artworks were created over the last several weeks on papyrus especially for this exhibition, the first of its kind in the U.S.” [Falls Church News-Press]

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(Updated at 1 p.m.) Independence Day is coming up on Thursday (July 4). Check this list in case you are planning to visit government facilities around Fairfax County later this week — they might be closed.

County-wide

All county government offices, circuit courts and Fairfax County libraries will be closed on Thursday and Friday.

The I-66 Transfer Station (4618 West Ox Road) and the I-95 Landfill Complex (9850 Furnace Road) will be closed on Thursday. Residents with private collection will need to contact their haulers.

Vienna

Town of Vienna offices will be closed on Thursday, and refuse collection will take place on Friday.

The Vienna Community Center (120 Cherry Street SE) will have reduced hours on Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The gym will not be open.

Falls Church

The Mary Riley Styles Public Library will be closed on Thursday and Friday.

The Community Center (223 Little Falls Street) will be closed on Thursday but open regular hours on Friday.

City Hall will be closed on Thursday and Friday.

McLean

The McLean Community Center will be closed on Thursday and Friday.

Other Closures

Metro trains and buses and the Fairfax Connector will be operating on a Saturday schedule on July 4. Large coolers and bicycles will not be allowed on the Metro trains after 2 p.m. Metro stations will be open from 7 a.m.-11:30 p.m.

The Department of Motor Vehicles will be closed on Thursday and Friday.

Speaking of closed offices, Tysons Reporter will be on a break as well on Thursday and Friday.

Photo by Warren Tobias on Unsplash

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In the wake of Capital One opening the region’s tallest office building, the nearby McLean Metro station has had a sharp increase in Metro traffic.

New data from the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission compared Metro ridership in January, February and March with the same period in 2018. All of the Silver Line stations in Virginia saw an increase in ridership over the previous year, part of an ongoing trend.

Overall the McLean Metro station had the largest increase in ridership with 20.6 percent growth.

The Greensboro Metro station, site of The Boro development and other projects aiming to compete with Tysons Corner Center as a commercial hub, also saw substantial ridership increase with an 18.4 percent growth.

The most popular station is Wiehle-Reston East — the end of the line — with 1,018,980 total riders over three months. In Tysons, the most population station was Tysons Corner with 490,212 riders over three months.

The Spring Hill Metro station had previously seen a 2.9 percent decline in ridership between last winter and the one before, but in the three months that followed the station saw a modest 2 percent increase in ridership over the previous year.

Photo 2 via Tysons Partnership/Twitter

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