The following was among actions taken at the Feb. 22 meeting of the Falls Church City Council. For more information, call 241-5003.
BUS SYSTEM CONSIDERED -- The council held its first public hearing on a city proposal for a neighborhood bus system serving the East Falls Church Metro station during rush hour. Of the six residents who spoke most supported the proposal, and two urged that the buses be accessible to the handicapped.
While Falls Church covers only two square miles and has two Metro stations located directly outside city limits, most residents live in easy walking distance of the stations. A 1986 survey of the city's roughly 4,500 households predicted that at least 400 of the city's 10,000 residents would use the system regularly twice a day.
The proposal is to operate a bus system weekdays from 6:30 to 9:30 a.m. and from 3:30 to 7 p.m. The system would involve four 18-passenger buses, which would follow a wide loop around the city through residential areas. Two buses would follow the route in a clockwise direction and two counter-clockwise. Residents would pay a 25-cent, one-way fare. Buses would come about every seven minutes.
City costs are currently estimated to be about $225,000 for five buses, including a spare bus, and $317,000 for annual operating costs. Falls Church Senior Planner Hal Glasser said that the city would be eligible for funding from the Virginia Department of Transportation, which could pay up to two thirds of the project's total cost. He said that if the project wins approval, it could be in operation by the fall.
The Planning Commission is expected to make a recommendation on the proposal March 21. The City Council will take the matter up again March 28.