Ped/Bike bridge replacement will improve connection from W&OD to East Falls Church

Arlington County is replacing the footbridge across Four Mile Run that connects the
Existing bridge as approached from the east
W&OD/Custis Trail east of Sycamore Street with the East Falls Church Metro station.  The current footbridge is very narrow, very old and has become obsolete. Its replacement is necessary for safety reasons. However, with input from the Arlington County pedestrian and bicycle advisory committees, the County has taken advantage of this opportunity to improve the bridge.  The replacement bridge will meet ADA standards, will be wider and is in a better location for reducing confusion among trail users.

On numerous occasions I have offered confused trail users directions at this location, because it is not obvious which direction is the main trail. Obviously, better (or any) signage would be helpful as well.  Signage is not included in the current project budget.

This map shows the locations of the original bridge and the new bridge and estimated placement of the new trail connector.  As noted on the map, a significant area of asphalt will be removed and replaced with landscaping.  The total amount of permeable surface is likely to be increased even though the new bridge and trail connector will be wider than the original.

View East Falls Church trail bridge replacement in a larger map

The new bridge will be 50 feet long and 14 feet wide with a concrete deck (the existing bridge has a wooden deck). The cost for this project is $240,000, with half coming from Arlington's bridge replacement funding and half from pedestrian improvements.  Expected life of the bridge is 75 years and the project is planned for completion in mid-March.

Below are some photos.

Existing bridge as approached from the direction of the East Falls Church Metro station

W&OD trail passing by construction zone. Sycamore Street can be seen in the back left.

Current pathway to the footbridge. Construction zone is to the right of the existing bridge

Location of the new bridge. Traffic signals at Sycamore and N. 19th St can be seen in the background.

View of the construction as of Dec. 31

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