King Street Bicycle Lanes


The City of Alexandria is planning on resurfacing King Street from Russell Road to Janneys Lane in the fall. Within the resurfacing plans, The City is propsing to install bicycle lanes in both directions and narrow the moving lanes to calm traffic. In order to gather public feeback, The City is holding a public meeting on September 18th at 7:00pm in the cafeteria at Maury Elementary. To learn more visit:


Results of the poll are in:

Further comments and suggestions should be sent to Hillary Poole, by Friday. 


The reason there is not a lot of bike traffic on that route is because it is so dangerous. It's not the number of bikes that use a given route that should dictate where lanes are placed (arguably, high use would suggest that a seperated lane is not needed) but the existance of a lane will effect the number of bikes using the route.  Also, the reason you don't see bikes on the sidewalks there is because until very recently (the end of July) it was illegal to ride a bike on any sidewalk in the city. Sidewalk cycling is dangerous (think intersections and turning cars), annoying to pedestrians and besides, bike riders have every right to use the public roadways.  Bike lanes can and do effect the number of bikes using a route--it has been proven time and time again in jurisdictions locally, nationwide and overseas. This is the only through east-west thoroughfare in that part of the city.

A lot of these comments are nonsensical. This only affects the stretch between King & Janneys. It cannot possibly make congestion worse, since its removing PARKING, not travel lanes.
Plus, the bike lanes will provide a buffer between traffic on the downhill side and a very narrow sidewalk that is hemmed in by a retaining wall for part of the stretch. I guess the commenter who referred to biking as 18th century probably objects to pedestrians for daring to use a prehistoric transportation mode.
I realize it's fashionable these days to scream in outrage every time something new or different is proposed and to make wild claims of impending catastrophe, but I'm getting a little tired of this Tea Party-like behavior. If you're going to raise objections, at least try to make them intelligent.

Yep. People hear "bike lane" and they think "they are taking something from me and my car". Every time, without even looking at the proposal.  People, the bike lane will keep bikes OUT of "your" travel lane, and no travel lanes are being removed. Only parking, that you personally (not the homeowners who think they also own the public road in front of their homes) have never and will never use.

On the surface, this is an easy decision but it's threatening to be 'business as usual'.  Upper Rosemont has always, historically, been successful in lobbying the city to dedicate publicly maintained resources (note the longstanding private enclave created by closing the street access from King St , thereby congesting the intersection of King & Russell.) for what's, essentially, private use. Once again, homeowners want to appropriate a public resource for private use. They're crying foul and they have the time, money, and influence to tilt the decision-making process yet again. So as not to tar the entire strip of homeowners, some along King St have done what everyone in this city has to do to get consistent and reliable private parking - dedicate some of their land to a driveway. --------------------On the con side, Jonathan Krall and the remaining bicycle fundamentalists behind the Alexandria pro-bicyle movement haven't been doing themselves any favors by flouting both the law and common sense in terms of cyclist behavior on the public thoroughfares. The cold hard reality is that our historic streets are narrow and weren't designed to safely accomodate parking, joggers, cyclists, and vehicular traffic.  Within these constrainted roadways it's made even worse when cyclists aren't held to to the same traffic laws that other users of the road are held to.  If every user of the road isn't playing by the same set of rules, you get what we have now - hazards, chaos, and resentment. It's even more maddening that the cycling fundamentalists see vehicular traffic as a moral hazard that they like to see gone. It's a luxurious a first world problem made possible by a robust regional economy that's, by and large, enabled by the internal combustion engine.----------------Lastly, attention has to be focused on the Alexandria City staff. Through incomptence, they're not doing a great job planning and executing road use.  Witness the overly narrow streets in the new Potomac Yards development that can't even accomodate the city's existing firetrucks. Witness the hash made of the bike and traffic lanes on Slater's Lane. Or the irrational travel and turn lanes along both Mt Vernon and Commonwealth. Or the inconsistent application of traffic calming in the rest of Rosemont (Maple Street is now a thoroughfare for every truck and school bus in the city since its the only cut-through at the southern terminus of Mt Vernon that didn't get speed tables. In short, I don't think citizens can count on the city to plan proactively OR  correctly. We live in what's an otherwise lovely community but the government doesn't inspire much confidence in this arena.  For all its corruption, the DC government seems to be doing a better job of planning a transportation network that take into account all the users and not just those with the time and money to show up to meetings.  Alexandria City government is in bed with property owner and development interests instead of taking the needs of al the citizens into account and, from a planning perspective, is continuing to play a reactive game of whack-a-mole with problems as they arise.-----------------------In the end, someone will lose out. Who will it be?

Here are some key points that may be relevant to the debate:  - Alexandria has few east-west routes in that area  - This route is in the 2008 bike/ped mobility plan. A great deal of public outreach was done at that time.  - This route is used often by bicycles, so much so that the Google Maps "street view" shows a cyclist on this King, going uphill from Russsell. See  - While the loss of parking is a sacrifice, there are few homes on that section of King St and the homes that are present have off-street parking (driveways).Since "anonymous" raised the issue, I'll also point out that, as a cyclist, I would would support both the enforcement of stop signs (for all) and enforcement of posted speed limits (not the posted limit+10 as is presently the case; let us stop this lawlessness now). More practically, education for all would make bicyclists more predictable and less upsetting to drivers. Adding bicycle information to the driving test and teaching all school children to ride safely would be a good start.

Traffic is already a problem on King Street.  This proposal would only make this problem worse.  If anything, any extra space should be used to create more lanes for cars.  Between heavy traffic, posted speed limits and traffic lights, there is no need for so-called traffic calming on King Street.  And all this potential construction, disruption, and cost for what?  Bike lanes?  The bicycle is 18th Century technology.  Lets move on.

The logic of your comment makes no sense.  There will remain the same number of travel lanes.  A parking lane is being removed.  

I say yea. That is the only available artery and needs to be accessible for bike transit if bicycling is to become a serious transportation alternative.

King St is a mess--tourists/peds, shops, cars.  Put a bike lane a street over (Cameron, Prince, Queen?), where bicyclists don't compete with so much. 

You don't know what you're talking about and most likely didn't read the article. The proposal is not for King Street in Old Town but King Street in Rosemont--between Russell Road and Janney’s Lane, as clearly stated in the article.And there ARE bike lanes (sort of) on both Cameron and Prince already (they're actually "bike routes", not dedicated lanes seperated by paint or a physical barrier).

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