In spring 2016, the National Park Service plans to start major road reconstruction on Beach Drive, an undertaking that will take up to three years.
Wayne Campbell of NPS detailed the scope of work and the process at a community meeting on November 17th. Paul Hoffman from DDOT was also present to answer questions about coordinating traffic detours for all modes of transportation. Each phase of the project will tackle one of five stretches of the road from Shoreham Drive to the Maryland line. Each segment of the road will be closed from four to eight months.
Bike and pedestrian trails will also be closed for rebuilding and widening from their current eight feet to ten feet. The two-feet-wide sidewalk in the zoo tunnel will be widened, and a railing installed to better protect walkers and cyclists from vehicle traffic.
For more specific information here is the Park Service’s PowerPoint presentation. Some highlights from the slides:
- The five phases of reconstruction will require closing the following road segments.
- Phase 1: Beach Drive between Shoreham Drive and Porter Street.
- Phase 2: Beach Drive between Porter Street and Tilden Street/Park Road.
- Phase 3: Beach Drive between Tilden Street/Park Road and Broad Branch Road.
- Phase 4: Beach Drive between Broad Branch Road and Joyce Road.
- Phase 5: Beach Drive between Joyce Road and the National Park Service boundary at the Maryland state line.
- The last rehabilitation of Beach Drive occurred in 1991, and the pavement has surpassed its 20-year service life. It has deteriorated to a point where patching and repairs are no longer cost effective. It is classified as being in poor condition. It no longer provides the level of safety and quality people have come to expect and deserve from the National Park Service.
Forest Hills Connection has requested an update from DDOT on how or if this project will impact the timing of the Broad Branch Road reconstruction project. It’s been three years since the first community meeting on the alternatives under consideration for rebuilding that roadway, and we’re still awaiting word on which alternative DDOT will – or can – choose.