The Long Bridge could give more than 75,000 people an easy bike commute to Crystal City
The Long Bridge is the the rusty old rail bridge that you can see heading over the Potomac River on Metro or from the Mount Vernon Trail. DDOT, VDOT, CSX, the Federal Railroad Administration (and more) are working on a series of options to replace the bridge. If a trail connection could be added to the bridge, it would represent a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to improve bicycle and pedestrian connectivity between Arlington and DC.
The black area on this map (click for an interactive version) represents the 30 minute "bikeshed" for Crystal City. It is the area from within which one can bike to Crystal City in 30 minutes or less. The colored areas represent how much larger that bikeshed gets with various designs of a Long Bridge trail connection.
The red area is how much it expands if the trail connection goes from the Long Bridge Park esplanade in Crystal City to Ohio Drive in DC (with a connection to the Mt Vernon trail along the way). The blue area is how much it expands if that trail connection continues on to Maine Avenue. The green area is how much the bikeshed expands if the trail connection makes it all the way to Maryland Ave.
How many people are we talking about? Glad you asked:
|Color||Connection To||Population in Bikeshed|
|BLACK||No Long Bridge Trail||208,648|
At a minimum, the Long Bridge puts over 40,000 more people within easy biking distance of Crystal City. With the right design, that climbs to over 75,000 people. This analysis is looking at just one potential bike commute. The Long Bridge woulds also drastically improve the bikesheds for most of the downtown DC employment centers.
A trail connection is being considered, but it isn't a done deal by any stretch of the imagination. There is an important meeting THIS THURSDAY, November 29th and supporters need to SHOW UP. See this WABA blog post for details on the meeting, to RSVP, and to read more about this important bicycle and pedestrian connection.