Traffic congestion in Alexandria is one of the most common concerns of residents in the City. Due to the City's location outside of D.C. many people travel through our City to reach their destinations. The proliferation of navigation apps that directs through traffic onto local streets instead of on major highways has worsened the condition over the past few years. The Traffic Engineering Division, in partnership with Transportation Planning, is continually working to reduce the impacts of cut-through traffic while mitigating the impacts on local streets.
DUKE STREET TRAFFIC MITIGATION
Evening traffic trying to access the Telegraph Road ramp from Duke Street is a well known issue that impacts neighborhoods across the City. While there are a number of longer term projects to improve the mobility and traffic flow along Duke Street, there are some shorter term options that the City can test and measure to determine if they are helping to mitigate the regional cut-through traffic on neighborhood residential streets.
TECHNOLOGY & TRAFFIC MANAGEMENT
Many elements of the Smart Mobility Program are aimed at better managing traffic on our streets. The Adaptive Traffic Signal Control project aims to upgrade signal infrastructure to enable sensors and communication that will allow real time, automatic signal changes to reduce congestion. The Transportation Management Center continues to be upgraded to incorporate new technology feeds to improve the City’s response to emergencies and road incidents. New sensors throughout the City provide real time and historical data about travel times, speeds and trip routes that provide information to help city staff make more informed decisions to manage traffic.
The purpose of installing No Thru Trucks signs is to restrict any combination of truck, tractor truck, trailer, or semitrailer on the requested roadway (pickup trucks or panel trucks are exempt). The City maintains a Truck Route Map with routes and restrictions. Restricting large trucks maintains the character of the community, decreases frequency for asphalt and pavement maintenance, and ensures large trucks are traveling along designated truck routes. For more information on the process for requesting a No Thru Trucks sign installation, please review, complete, and submit the following form: City of Alexandria No Through Truck Sign Request Form.
To reduce cut-through traffic where unnecessarily high traffic volumes create safety issues or exacerbate congestion on local streets, some residential streets have peak hour turn restriction aimed at keeping traffic on roadways designed for more cars. Most recently, the City approved restriction on East Taylor Run Parkway as a result of the Central Alexandria Traffic Study recommendations.
DON'T BLOCK THE INTERSECTION
The City has a number of intersections with "Don't Block the Intersection" regulations. Traffic congestion is often worsened during peak hours when drivers do not clear the intersection before the light turns red, thereby blocking others from getting through the intersection. The City is evaluating existing and additional locations where signage and enforcement of this infraction will help to reduce peak hour traffic congestion. New locations will be added over the next year.
The Complete Streets Program works with the community when roadways are being resurfaced to redesign some streets to improve safety and accommodate the needs of all users. Redesigning streets to slow cars and prioritize local traffic can help to reduce cut-through traffic. The Traffic Calming Program is a community driven program for residents to work with their neighbors and request redesigns outside of the resurfacing program.
- The City has become a WAZE Connected Citizens Program Partner. By sharing publicly available information, the partnership enables WAZE to direct traffic around incidents and road closures and enables the City to respond more immediately to accidents and congestion on their roads. Waze aggregates the partners' data on their App platform, resulting in succinct and thorough overviews of current road conditions that can be used for more informed planning.
- The City has become a partner in Metropolitan Area Transportation Operations Coordination (MATOC) program. This program is a coordinated partnership between transportation agencies in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia that aims to improve safety and mobility in the region through information sharing, planning, and coordination.