County staff and bicycling advocates gather at one of the new bicycle wayfinding signs in downtown McLean Thursday, June 20.
Photo by Alex McVeigh.
McLean Fairfax County staff joined with bicycling advocates in downtown McLean Thursday, June 20, to celebrate the installation of several bicycle wayfinding signs. The signs give directions to bicyclists and pedestrians throughout downtown McLean to community landmarks such as the McLean Community Center, and W&OD Trail.
“We’re hoping what they’ve done in McLean will set the standard for the rest of the county,” said Bruce Wright, chair of Fairfax Advocates for Better Bicycling.
More than 80 signs were installed around McLean, some of which indicate the bike route itself, while others point to specific locations, including the new Metrorail stations. Input from McLean area bicyclists was used in the creation of the routes, as well as from the county-wide Bicycle Master Plan.
“I live east of downtown, and like to bike west, toward McLean Central Park and Old Dominion Drive, and sometimes it can be hard to efficiently navigate all the side streets in downtown,” said Barry Williams, who first saw the signs Thursday afternoon. “These definitely make it easier for me, and I’d imagine they’d be very helpful for long range cyclists that are trying to get through as quickly as safely as possible, which I’m all for.”
Supervisor John Foust (D-Dranesville) said this has been a priority since he took office. Shortly after his election in 2008, he appointed a Pedestrian Task Force that gave recommendations on making McLean more accessible on bike and on foot.
“I’m excited that McLean was the first area in the county to have the benefit of these signs,” he said. “Bicycle use is increasing and these signs will be useful to both community and recreational bicyclists in the area.”
The project was funded through the county’s Commercial and Industrial Tax revenues.
Further improvements for bicyclists in McLean will be coming soon. Marcia Twomey, president of the Greater McLean Chamber of Commerce, said that 15 bicycle racks will be installed downtown in the coming months.