The last call for New Year's resolutions for our local transportation officials concludes with more suggestions.
Dear Dr. Gridlock:
Resolved, that the Prince William County Police and the Virginia State Police will designate an officer to direct traffic at accident scenes.
I was caught in a backup at Route 1 and Occoquan Road in November. There were six or seven officers standing around, but none was directing traffic. They could have helped us.
Resolved, that officials will take another look at the traffic light at Route 234 and Route 29 near the Stone House at the Manassas Battlefield National Park.
From 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. (I think), outbound vehicles on Route 29 get a "leading" green light to allow them to turn left onto Route 234. The problem is that Route 29 traffic coming inbound from Gainesville eventually gets its green light, but the outbound Route 29 vehicles turning left onto Route 234 don't know when that is.
This is dangerous.
Please resolve that the Virginia Department of Transportation will repave the connection of Route 7 and Route 15 in Leesburg. The pavement is crumbling and the patchwork is rough.
I've been commuting along Route 7 from Harper's Ferry, W.Va., to Reston for 20 years and don't remember any repaving effort in that area.
Harper's Ferry, W.Va.
Let's resolve to stop talking about our transit problems and start solving them! All we do around here is debate, argue, form committees, study issues, protest resolutions, rethink the solutions, etc., etc., etc., but we never seem to actually do anything about it.
The debate should not be whether to build roads or mass transit but how much road and mass transit to build. If we stop wasting money on political infighting, we could go a long way toward solving our transit nightmares.
Northern Virginia officials should resolve to put easy-to-read overhead street signs at each intersection controlled by a traffic light. It is very difficult to read the small signs posted on the intersection corners.
Since it is always necessary to look up at the traffic light, it would be helpful to have a street sign at the same location, meaning we no longer have to locate a corner sign. Result: Traffic flow and safety would be enhanced.
WILLIAM E. STEMPLE
VDOT should resolve to post road numbers and road names on highway signs. Most streets and roads are known to people by names (e.g. Old Keene Mill Road) and not numbers (Route 644).
Note to traffic reporters: This applies to you, too.
We would like the powers-that-be to resolve to do a better job of synchronizing the traffic lights and carefully adjusting the timing of these lights in congested areas.
For instance, the whole Seven Corners mess. All of the timing of these lights needs to be adjusted to prevent gridlock. Every evening, cars end up blocking the roads because the timing of the lights is such that the first light is still green while the next light is red. At one point about a year ago, the timing of the lights was changed for the better, but then, after a month, it was changed back to the old settings and gridlock reigned again.
The stretch of Gallows Road from Route 50 to the Dunn Loring Metro stop, barely a mile long, has a ridiculous number of traffic lights, and none is synchronized. You go from red light to red light for the whole stretch.
We could go on for several pages but will restrain ourselves.
and THOMAS WILLIAMS
Dr. Gridlock's assistant, Jessica Medinger, contributed to this column.
Dr. Gridlock appears Monday in the Metro section and Wednesday in Prince William Extra. You can write to Dr. Gridlock, P.O. Box 3467, Fairfax, Va. 22038-3467, or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. The doctor's fax number is 703-352-3908. Please include your full name, address and day and evening phone numbers.