Roads

BAD NEWS: LEXINGTON LIGHT REMOVAL NOW FIRST HALF OF 2020

The county has updated their information and the timeline is pushed back.

Got some unfortunate news to pass along tonight.

Just days after the county told us the much-hated traffic light on Route 7 at Lexington Boulevard would be removed later this year, they’ve issued an update. Now, Glen Barbour — the Public Affairs and Communications Officer for Loudoun County — reports the light won’t likely come out until the first half of next year — between February and June of 2020.

Commuters hate the light because it dramatically slows down traffic on Route 7 during rush hours. It’s the only remaining traffic signal on the road between Sterling and Leesburg.

Since we published the text of Barbour’s message to The Burn the other day, we will do the same now. It’s long and has lots of details — but since we know some of you like to get into the weeds, here you go.

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I am emailing you to provide you with new information that I have received regarding the removal of the traffic signal at Route 7 and Lexington Drive. The information that I provided to you on April 23 was incorrect. To ensure your readers and the general public have accurate information about this project, I am requesting that you update your published story with the latest and most accurate information currently available, which is contained in this email.

Based on the current process, the projected timeframe for the removal of the traffic signal at Lexington Drive and Route 7 is sometime between February 2020 and June 2020. It is important to note that as with all construction projects there are many factors that could influence the schedule, such as weather; therefore, the information I am providing today is still subject to change as the county works through the procurement process and ramps up to the construction phase.

To help explain how the project will proceed and to understand the projected timeline for the removal of the traffic signal, I am providing you with details from our Department of Transportation and Capital Infrastructure.

First, the County must complete the bidding process. Right now, the county is preparing to advertised for construction bids, which we expect will happen by June 1, 2019. Generally, our bids are posted for a minimum of 30 days. Based on the county’s experience, we anticipate bids will be received in the month of July 2019, at which time the bids must be evaluated for responsiveness, errors, and compared against the project budget to ensure sufficient funds exist to proceed with a contract award recommendation.  As a result, we anticipate the contract will be brought to the Board of Supervisors for award in September or early October 2019.

Once the contract has been awarded by the Board, next, county staff must prepare the contracts for the contractor’s signature and the contractor must execute the contract, provide the appropriate bonds, submit a project schedule, and other project related submittals.  This process can take up to 60 days to complete. When all matters are in order, the county will then issue the Contractor’s Notice to Proceed (NTP), which we estimate will be issued no earlier than November 1, 2019, and could be as late as January 1, 2020. Once the county issues the NTP, construction may begin.

To expedite removal of the traffic signal, the county’s contract documents have been prepared with the stipulation that “within 30 days of initiating field operations, the traffic signal at Route 7 and Lexington Drive will be removed from service.” The schedule for initiating field operations is determined by the contractor, so until the contractor is on-board, we cannot determine the exact schedule. Assuming the contractor initiates field operations shortly after the issuance of the NTP, we estimate that the traffic signal will be removed from service sometime in the first six months of calendar year 2020.

As I mentioned above, there are a number of factors that may include this schedule. This timeframe is completely dependent upon many variables in a process like this, including whether the procurement process proceeds without any unforeseen interruptions, such as the county actually receives one or more responsive and responsible bids; the timely issuance of the VDOT land use permit; the successful contractor’s schedule stipulating when field operations will commence; and weather conditions.

To summarize the timeline:

  1. Project advertised in the month of May
  2. Bids to be received and evaluated in the month of July
  3. Contract award by the Board of Supervisors in September or early October 2019
  4. Contractor NTP issued November or December 2019
  5. Contractor initiated field construction operations in January or February 2020
  6. Traffic signal to be removed within 30 days of initiating field operations, which would likely be between February 2020 and June 2020.

Again, this is the best information we can provide at this point regarding the removal of the traffic signal at Lexington Drive. Once the contractor is hired, we will likely have an update on the potential schedule. The county intends to inform the public about the schedule once it is confirmed. So, we ask for the public’s patience as we work as quickly as possible on this project that will result in the removal of the traffic signal at Lexington Drive.

I hope this detailed explanation is helpful. I regret any confusion the information we previously provided to you may have caused.

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Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings. Please don’t kill the messenger.

(Image at top: Google Maps)

12 Comments
  1. Joe Smelkin 2 years ago
    Reply

    In the movie Zootopia, we all remeber the sloth that worked the DMV line… I bet you laughed internally when you thought about it. How sad is it that we all agree the light needs to go, but it is close to year before something happens. There has to be a better way to government.

  2. Anonymous 2 years ago
    Reply

    This timeline is ridiculous. The Board of Supervisors need to address this immediately. Some of the Supervisors had stated that this light would be removed in the spring of 2019.

  3. cbass43 2 years ago
    Reply

    Why don’t they change the light during rush hour so it is a very long wait for those trying to cross Rt.7 or turn left onto 7?

  4. Rob Hall 2 years ago
    Reply

    This is such BS. How about a little common sense. You are causing thousands of people every day to be sitting in traffic, while only benefiting a few, makes no sense what so ever. People can get to where they need to by using the Ashburn Village exit. Remove the light!!

  5. Anonymous 2 years ago
    Reply

    First the good – Thank you to this site for publishing the “weeds” – I appreciate the details

    Second the bad – So we are in an era of the “Green New Disaster err I mean Deal” and the left wants to battle man made climate change – well for the lefties in LoCo – low hanging fruit is to keep traffic moving rather than idling at this ridiculous, useless [except for a select few] traffic signal. How much needless emissions are shot into the atmosphere to placate a chosen few at the expense of the masses?

    Third the ugly – this piggy backs on #2 – So this light has to stay why? oh yeah to placate a few cars over the masses

    Agree with cbass – make this light extremely long during certain hours – my addition to that is make it so long as to discourage anyone to use this light and keep traffic flowing.

    Goodness Gracious LOCO – this is so ridiculous – Do your job and get rid of this light

    • El Vez 2 years ago
      Reply

      Come on man, more fuel burned = more taxes = more revenue for gubment pensions. Surprised you didn’t know that.

  6. Sarah 2 years ago
    Reply

    In case you want to contact the Board of Supervisors to complain: [email protected]

  7. DSimmons 2 years ago
    Reply

    So Anonymous makes this political and blames the left. Sheesh! How does this end up left vs. right? …Anyway, I find it shocking that the county couldn’t have found a way to incorporate this intersection/light removal into the multi-million dollar Ashburn Village construction project. It essentially negates the Ashburn Village project for a good two years, all for a few people who “need” to use the Lexington intersection. Why should I be surprised? I mean, they can’t even sync the Cardinal Park/Battlefield Parkway lights during rush hour, so why should they get this one right?

  8. crashdavis88 2 years ago
    Reply

    I hope everyone write the B,o.S. It’s ridiculous so much money (tax payer) was spent on the Ashburn Parkway and Belmont Ridge interchanges yet we still have to suffer 20-30 minute commute time additions because of a silly/low traffic light. Just turn off left turns and get rid of it! Treat it like Warp drive on Rt. 28.

  9. Tim 2 years ago
    Reply

    VDOT makes the decisions regarding the installation and removal of traffic signals not the Board of Supervisors. The county can make requests to install or remove a signal but VDOT makes the ultimate decision of if, when and any requirements that must be met before a signal can be removed.

  10. Anonymous 2 years ago
    Reply

    Great job LoCo bureaucrats, should have started this months ago …

  11. Anonymous 2 years ago
    Reply

    Wasn’t the light removal and timing based in conjunction with connecting Loudoun County Parkway and Riverside providing a bypass of sorts? It appeared there was an eminent domain approval and the construction of the connector road was to begin this spring. Is that dead/postponed as well?

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