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First a $1M Bus Stop. Now $1 million for 4.3 Miles of Bike Lanes

Can Arlington County staff provide a complete response?

Over the weekend, we started a project of growling about individual follow-up responses to questions about the budget by Arlington County Board members. You can can find them here, sorted by department.

Earlier today, staff posted a response (labelled K-5) to a question by Board member Walter Tejada about the cost of bike lanes on Columbia Pike. Here is the staff response:

"The County’s Columbia Pike Bike Boulevards project, which creates 4.3 mile bike routes on streets parallel and adjacent to Columbia Pike, is well underway. The project website is noted below:


"All of the planning, design, right-of-way acquisition and construction in the Columbia Pike corridor is intended to be consistent with the recommendations of the Columbia Pike Streetscape Taskforce and the form based code for both the commercial nodes and neighborhood frontages. Revising the approach to the design of Columbia Pike would entail revisiting and revising these plans. It would also require street redesign work and additional new acquisition. This would delay the implementation of the remaining segments of Columbia Pike, and also increase project costs."

Since the staff response made no mention of the cost of the Columbia Pike Bike Lanes project, I asked the Board and Manager to clarify the response, asking:

"I'm looking at the staff response to this question by Mr. Tejada, but although the subject on the top line asks for the cost of the bike lanes, there is no mention of cost in the staff's response. It's rather interesting, though, that the bottom line on the Columbia Pike Bike Boulevards webpage estimates the project cost at $1 million.

"So, is the estimated project cost still $1 million. Or was the $1 million the estimate when staff met with adjacent civic associations in 2012? What is the current cost estimate? How does the $1 million for the 4.3 miles of bike lanes on Columbia Pike compare with the estimated cost of all other bike lane projects on a per bike lane mile basis at a comparable point in time?

"What is the review process to ensure these staff responses are responsive to the Board member's question?"

Growls readers who have not yet told members of the Arlington County Board that taxpayers in Arlington County are overtaxed and under-served are urged to take a few minutes to tell Board members to cut the real estate tax rate. Just click-on the link below:

  • Call the County Board office at (703) 228-3130

And tell them ACTA sent you.


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