A multifaceted proposal to relieve traffic congestion on Broad Street (Route 7) came under fire Monday during a Falls Church City Council public hearing on the plan.
Sue Bachtel, representing the Village Preservation and Improvement Society, said the group opposes the plan to widen Broad Street from four to five lanes between West Street and Haycock Road because the road expansion would destroy "the village character" of Falls Church.
The proposal, one of several options offered by a citizens advisory committee on the improvement of Broad Street, "would attract more traffic and more congestion that would spill over into our residential streets," Bachtel said.
Broad Street business managers, however, were split on the issue. Warren Cohen, owner of a car wash on West Broad Street, said he opposes the road expansion because it would push the street curbs up against the exit to his car wash, creating a traffic hazard and hurting his business.
Don Beyer, owner of an automobile dealership and a service station on Broad Street, said he favors the addition of left-turn lanes because they would improve safety, reduce congestion and provide better access to businesses on the street.
Other proposals to synchronize traffic signals, consolidate bus stops, replace deteriorating curbs and sidewalks, move utility lines underground and construct a pedestrian overpass at Haycock Road were not as controversial as the plan to widen the street.
The Falls Church Planning Commission will hold a second public hearing on the road project Monday at 8 p.m. in City Council chambers, 300 Park Ave.