Braddock Road Widening
"Begin with the premise that the automobile must accommodate the earth, rather than vice versa."
Lava-like, the asphalt flows and spreads across the Accotink Creek watershed. The proposed widening of Braddock Road may sacrifice acres of tree cover and cross over the Long Branch (central) tributary and the Accotink Creek mainstem.
VDOT Information page:
Fairfax County Department of Transportation information:
Scroll down to reports from public meetings and other Braddock Road news.
Braddock Road Study Area
Date: July 26, 2023, Braddock Road Public Meeting, Lake Braddock High School
Elected Officials attending: Senator Marsden, Delegate Watts, Supervisor Walkinshaw, former Supervisor Cook. Public attendance estimated about 180.
What was new: The project is funded only east of Southampton Drive. The pedestrian overpass at Kings Park Shopping Center has been omitted. Formerly in-line and relatively unobtrusive stormwater swales are to be replaced by 10 stormwater ponds, for a savings of about one acre of land. The steep slopes on both sides of the road will require about ¾ mile of 10 – 15’ high retaining walls. These walls were described as saving tree cover by avoiding more severe land grading. With these and other measures, about 40% of trees in the corridor are stated to be spared.
Many of the public commenters were negative on the idea of shared use paths, for tree loss, for the lack of pleasant user experience, and for perceived danger of a roadside path. It remains ironic to clear so many trees and invest so much engineering to install asphalt paths on both sides of Braddock Road in the name of perceived environmental gains. Equally ironic are the facts that the path on the south side of Braddock Road will end at the Beltway and that the Ravensworth Road section of the project will only have one shared use path.
Date: November 29, 2022, Braddock Road Public Meeting, Online
The option to realign both street and stream at Danbury Forest Drive is still dead, but many residents seem to be applying CPR. VDOT representatives again described the "Base Option" for this intersection as the chosen option for resons of reduced environmental impact, safety, traffic flow, and cost. However, the realignment (Option 1), with its traditional square intersection is popular with neighbors. Please submit written comments in favor of the "Base Option" with no realignment of Danbury Forest Drive through the floodplain.
All our pleas to reduce the amount of tree sacrifice and new asphalt devoted to new shared use paths on both sides of the road seem to have been in vain. This lamentable outcome was to be expected, since grant funding for this project depends on it being "multimodal", and all traces of transit accomodations disappeared early in the process.
Otherwise, there was little change from the January 22, 2022, meeting, other than the suggestion the pedestrian overpass at Kings Park Shopping Cener may be omitted.
Date: January 13, 2022, Braddock Road Public Meeting, Online
VDOT representatives described some variations that have been made to the plan since the last public meeting August 3, 2020. These are essentially options to the configuration of three intersections - Rolling Road, Burke Lake Road, and Danbury Forest Drive. Options for the first two intersections seem to offer little change environmentally. However, the unfortunate idea of realigning Danbury Forest Drive across Long Branch central is threatening to rise from the dead.
Worse, the realignment (Option 1) now includes realignment of Long Branch itself to accommodate the asphalt. This is not a preferred option by metrics of safety, traffic movement, or cost. It does, however, offer drivers a familiar scenario that may motivate some citizens to submit favorable comments. Please complete the VDOT Survey and submit written comments in favor of no realignment of Danbury Forest Drive through the floodplain (Base Option).
An Option 2 for Danbury Forest Drive was also described, with only a slight realignment.
Date: August 3, 2020, Braddock Road Public Online Meeting
Welcome news - the realignment of Danbury Forest Drive through the Long Branch central floodplain has been dropped. An attack of environmental remorse? Alas no- the motive is strictly financial. We'll take it anyway.
Other changes to this intersection and at 495 seem to be neutral environmentally.
Comments are due on a short dedline of August 10, 2020. Take the ONLINE SURVEY and let your Supervisors and FCDOT know what you think with the links above.
Date: June 26, 2017, Braddock Road Public Meeting, Lake Braddock Secondary School
Oops! We seem not to have kept this page up to date after each public meeting. Here's catch-up:
Arriving at this meeting, an FCDOT sign directing attendees was pointed the wrong way, a metaphor for the backwards-looking solutions being proposed inside.
!!A new insult to the environment is proposed!! - in the form of a realignment of Danbury Forest Drive to form a standard intersection with Wakefield Chapel Road, then razing the forested wetland area between the old and new roadbeds for a stormwater pond. This would all be directly in the Resource Protection Area hard against the banks of Accotink tributary Long Branch central. This stream is already listed as impaired and is currently the subject of a TMDL report, but such considerations seem not to be of concern to the planners.
Nor, sadly, were they of concern to the nearby residents, who spent most of the meeting speaking against the idea of adding a 300 parking space transit center to the existing Kings Park Shopping Center. Oddly, a nearly as large park-and-ride alternative incurred far less opposition, although its footprint and taking of open space would be greater.
Otherwise, the most egregious proposals for widening Braddock Road have been scaled back to "improvements" without adding additional lanes (except the near-continuous areas where new turn lanes will appear and the ironic devastation of the wooded areas along both shoulders to provide for bike paths). Proposed stormwater ponds seem to be positioned for maximum loss of tree cover. A 495 inner loop off-ramp to Braddock Road eastbound would punch an additional lane through the struggling new landscaping.
There will be a series of smaller workshops regarding details of each section of the project through the rest of 2017:
Public input is invited. You may always offer your comments via the links near the top of this page.
Construction is anticipated to run from 2020 through 2025.
The entire path of this project lies in the Accotink Creek watershed.
Traffic flow eased, but at what cost? Proposed Danbury Forest Drive realignment will obliterate wetlands and RPA. Who cares?
Date: June 9, 2015, Braddock Road Public Meeting, Lake Braddock Secondary School
Braddock District Supervisor John Cook and FCDOT representatives described the basic plan:
A Task Force of local civic association representatives has been meeting regularly with study contractors.
Upcoming public meetings will be in late 2015 and spring 2016. Construction would be in 2023.
Members of the public who spoke largely focused on the transit center, questioning the wisdom of locating it at the intersection of Burke Lake Road and Braddock Road.
Disappointingly, there was no mention of any environmental issue by either the presenters or members of the public.