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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Elmdale walkway nearly completed

[Photo by David Siegel]

The $400,000 project to install a sidewalk along Elmdale Road between Old Columbia Pike and Braddock Road is almost finished. Funding for project came from a Fairfax County bond approved in 2007.  

Mason Supervisor Penny Gross calls that stretch of road along the Pinecrest Golf Course “one of the busiest pedestrian crossings in Mason District.” 

The new sidewalk will be especially welcomed by one of her constituents who uses a walker and has been unable to get enough exercise, Gross says.


  1. You know what would be nice? A walkway along old Columbia Pike.

  2. There is no money for a sidewalk along Old Columbia Pike. Perhaps you have not heard but the FC Board of Superviors and the Karen Garza led group of poodles on the FC School Board went hat in hand begging to VA's Democratic Governor for more money for Fairfax County's "woefully under-funded" public schools, and were told to beat it.

    So Fairfax County doesn't have the money to fund your vanity projects.

    1. But they have money for a vanity project along Elmdale, and many others. Huh! Good to know! Glad that you are here to inform me!

      By the way, every single expenditure can be looked at as a "vanity" project. Old Columbia Pike is narrow, dangerous, has many pedestrians, oh, and it actually leads somewhere. The Elmdale walkway is just for people who live along Elmdale to prance and power walk about.

      I mentioned Old Columbia Pike because it intersects with Elmdale, an d many residents along the stretch have requested a walkway there.

      NOVA is the rest of Virginia's cash cow. The BOS, School Board, whoever, needs to do a better job of DEMANDING that we get a larger percentage of the money that we send to Richmond.

    2. Frankly, I have heard enough of the School Board's 'DEMANDING". $2Billion. 53% of our budget....enough is enough.
      I sure would like to see them pitching in and do a little belt tightening....
      The school board can't have it all.
      There is EM services, parks, police, fire ,
      all kinds of other thing. Libraries are to loose 43 positions!.
      I would like to hear them say "Thank You".
      That would be a really nice change.
      Perhaps a little honey and better communications with the general community who might have some helpful ideas. (yes, really)

    3. Two points:

      1) Complaining on this blog about a sidewalk being built on Elmdale but not on Old Columbia Pike is not going to get the job done. I recommend you consider a big donation to the Clinton Foundation. The Clinton's donors have favors done on their behalf. This is a documented FACT! But like good little sheep Democrats note defensively there is no "smoking gun."

      2) Anyone who thinks they are "done" hearing Karen Garza and her School Board poodles "demanding" MORE must be either planning on moving out of Fairfax County or are on life-support because that is not happening anytime soon.

      Amazingly enough, there are MANY insanely Liberal Democrats in Mason District who are ready to vote out Penny Gross on June 9th in favor of Garza's star pupil Jessica Swanson because Penny had the nerve not to bow down to Garza and hand back property bordering Arlington Blvd at Seven Corners for a "residential school" and did not agree to decimate the County's budget to feed Garza's unlimited appetite for more land, more money, more, more, more.

      Garza claims like all good public bureaucrats she is making these demands for the voiceless children she cares for so much.

      Garza and her poodles care so much, but they don't care that their endless demands on Fairfax County's resources will lead to a lower quality of life and force some and perhaps many current Fairfax residents to move because of the increasing tax burden they demand to feed the schools.

      Let's turn Fairfax County into Falls Church City - An extremely hypocritically expensive Liberal, Lilly White place, where the working and middle class are excluded. That's Jessica Swanson's campaign in a nutshell.

    4. Your Penny Gross decided to bring in thousands of children from South America and plop them into Mason District. Schools are legally required to accept every student and try to educate them. They also have to feed them and bring in specialized teachers who speak Spanish to teach and give remedial learning courses. These children may only have received a few years of education in their home countries. That costs thousands of dollars that schools weren't allocated for and the Board of Supervisors didn't want to give them. FYI, Penny is the insanely liberal Democrat you are railing against. Penny could care less about schools or about sidewalks for residents. Penny has had 20 years of being in power and what does Mason District have to show for it? Please give someone else a chance to try to make Mason District become what we all know it can be.

    5. I wouldn't call a sidewalk on Old Columbia Pike a "vanity project." It's a dangerous stretch of road for cars and pedestrians. Going to the grocery store at night is like playing whack-a-mole with the potholes and pedestrians trying to make their way home in the dark without a sidewalk or even shoulder to walk on. It's a bad strip of ripped up pavement with immediate drop-offs into deep ditches. I drove on better roads in Dominica. Shameful.

    6. Darn right, 8:17. It is damn shameful that the county allocated money to a VANITY, yes VANITY project on Elmdale, rather than to a road that has immediate safety concerns.

    7. OH, and a transportation bond passed recently with NO MONEY allocated to REAL pedestrian improvements on Old Columbia Pike. The bond mentioned "pedestrian improvements on Old Columbia Pike," and I inquired as to what exactly they were going to be. See below.


      Your question was forwarded to me.

      There are no sidewalks currently planned for Old Columbia Pike.

      The pedestrian improvements proposed consist of constructing signalized crosswalks and curb ramps/sidewalks at the intersection of Little River Turnpike and Old Columbia Pike.

      Pedestrian Program Manager
      Fairfax County

    8. Please do not use the term "poodles" in that pejorative manner.

    9. I sold my car and tried living in Fairfax County by walking, biking and taking the bus. After being almost run over five times I had enough. Bought a car and joined the millions of commuters to do what most people in Fairfax County do.... Drive. Zoning and infrastructure is all about driving your car. With low gas prices there will never be a demand for sidewalks. When gas prices eventually go to $20 / gallon then maybe our great citizens will demand walkways and move away from the living-room-on-wheels mega bloated super vehicles they love sooooo much.

  3. A sidewalk or walk way would be a fantastic improvement to the area along old Columbia pike. This area has a lot of pedestrian traffic. It’s not vanity …its infrastructure. It makes the community more viable. It helps people access public transportation, which in turn takes cars off the road. Sidewalks keep people safe and lowers your chance of an accident with pedestrians. Projects to improve infrastructure shouldn’t be labeled conservative or liberal. Infrastructure is an element that differentiates us and our community from other less developed places in the world. When developer’s buy a huge parcel of land to build a mini mansion community on, they should be required to pay for infrastructure. They need to provide sidewalks and traffic improvements. I don’t see any sidewalks on the Columbia pike side of one of these developments. We wouldn’t need to obtain money from other government entities if organizations building, small- oversized communities would pay their share instead of exploiting the community.

    1. The NIA Homes Reserve Hill Court is the most egregious case of developer lining the right pockets to get homes built that I have seen to date.

  4. When a lot of the neighborhoods, like the one north of Pinecrest Golf Course, were built, the buyers DID NOT WANT sidewalks. They wanted the feel of a rural neighborhood, not a city neighborhood. The same is true in Mantua if you've visited there.

    Fast forward 50 years and guess what, we want and NEED sidewalks. There are no developers to negotiate with - just property owners who might sacrifice some of their property. This has been happening all along Columbia Pike for the past 15 years or so.

    It would be nice if the sidewalks could just "appear" over night and not cost anything and not impact existing properties but I'm afraid we live in reality.

    Fairfax has done a great job in building sidewalks along Columbia Pike, for instance including the pedestrian bridge in front of Barcroft Dam and the completion of the walking/biking trail along Holmes Run which now with the new bridge near Dowden Terrace, connects our neighborhood with the entire Northern Virginia bike trail system.

    Great job, Fairfax!

    1. But we are asking for a sidewalk now. And no one is listening. And property owners along Old Columbia Pike do not own land directly abutting the street. There are storm drainage easements/ROWs all along that stretch.

      The Holmes Run Trail is fantastic and lovely, and is a stone's throw away from my neighborhood, where I do not even have a viable walking path out to a main road. That is all we are asking for.

  5. Let's require all future development to include sidewalks (both sides if possible), bike lanes, and turn lanes (if applicable). And let's find the will and money to fund sidewalks and bike lanes in existing communities. This will create more livable communities, raise Annandale's desirability (and possibly property values), increase pedestrian and bike rider safety, and encourage less driving (hence less auto pollution, congestion & healthier citizens).

  6. As one who lives adjacent to Old Columbia Pike and Elmdale, the sidewalk makes me gag. The path along Elmdale could have been fixed with filling in a few mud holes and whacking down the brush that blocked the path. OCP, which really needs at least a path if not a sidewalk, gets nothing. Why? Because the big property owner (who shall remain unnamed here but is well known) doesn't want it, and Penny won't buck a deep pocketed supporter. The builders of those new mega-mansions should have been required to add a sidewalk to the mix. They were the ones, after all, who cut down the trees and leveled the landscape, and it was their trucks and earth movers that contributed to the horrible road conditions. But no, they just walk away, and our supervisor does nothing. It's time for a change.

    1. Are you talking about the Lynch family? At a community meeting on the horrid speed humps that were installed, where many people thoughtfully said a sidewalk would solve all of the problems that putting in speed humps were trying to solve (yes- it is still dangerous to walk along Old Columbia Pike, even though it was proclaimed that speed humps would make it safer!) a Mr. Lynch stood up and proclaimed that he would approve of a sidewalk along his property.