Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program

What is Traffic Calming?
Traffic calming is a procedure designed to calm motor vehicle traffic and protect pedestrians, cyclists, vehicular passengers, and the overall quality of life for residents. Traffic calming is undertaken in order to promote a balance between vehicular users and other users of the City’s streets, especially pedestrians and bicyclists. By changing the design of streets, traffic calming techniques help to create a shared roadway with safe access for all users.

How Was the Neighborhood Traffic Program Developed?
The City has had a Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program as far back as 2005.  In November 2011, the City Council adopted an updated Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program. The update clarified program definitions and procedures.

How Can My Neighborhood Apply for Traffic Calming?
Information regarding the Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program is available in the Program Handbook. For more information about the Program or to submit an application, contact Paul Stoddard 703.248.5041.

Active and Pending Cases
City staff often has more requests for traffic calming then it can handle. In order to ensure cases are handled in a reasonable amount of time, staff limits the number of active cases to two at a time.  Additional requests are placed in queue and addressed as earlier cases are resolved. Below is a list of active and pending cases. 
Active Cases Request Received Resolution Expected By
Parker Avenue & Kent Street February 2013 spring 2015
Pennsylvania Avenue June 2013 fall 2015
Ellison Street August 2013  
Pending Cases Request Received Priority
N Maple Avenue September 2014 To Be Determined
Grove Avenue October 2014 To Be Determined
Great Falls Street November 2014 To Be Determined
N Cherry Street December 2014 To Be Determined
S Spring December 2014 To Be Determined
Program Update
The NTC Program was last updated in November, 2011. During 2012, the City received no requests for neighborhood traffic calming. In 2013, the City received four requests for traffic calming. The City also received two requests for neighborhood traffic calming that had to be declined because they were for collector streets or minor arterial streets, which are not eligible under the NTC Program. In 2014, the City received one more request for traffic calming, a second request that had to be declined because it was for a minor arterial street, and four expressions of interest. As adopted, the NTC Program cannot handle this volume of requests. In particular, the NTC Program is insufficiently staffed and lacks clear definitions at key decision points. These problems result in frustration for citizens because traffic calming solutions are delivered very slowly, frustration for the CACT because it must try to administer the program with insufficient resources, and frustration for staff because it cannot spend the appropriate amount of time to deliver a quality solution.

Consistent with the City's Transportation Master Plan, "Mobility for all Modes", the Citizens Advisory Committee on Transportation (CACT) and City staff are working to update the Program.

Program Update, Schedule and Status
The Program update is proceeding according to schedule. The CACT and City staff expect to complete the Program update by January or February of 2015.

Please see this living document to review the progress made by the CACT and City staff in updating the Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program.

The latest draft Program is now available for review.
Please see the below table of meeting dates and topics scheduled for discussion as part of the update process:
Meeting Date Venue Topics
June 11, 2014 CACT

(1) what does the City want to achieve with its traffic calming program?

(2) what are the problems with the existing program?

July 7, 2014 City Council work session

(1) status report on existing Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program

(2) status report on program update

July 9, 2014 CACT

(1) review of similar City programs to be consolidated

August 13, 2014 CACT

(1) review of traffic calming programs in walk-friendly communities

September 10, 2014 CACT

(1) introduction to new draft framework/program

October 8, 2014 CACT (1) review and discussion of new draft framework/program
October 20, 2014 City Council work session

(1) status report on program update

(2) guidance on key issues: funding, timing, split between staff and CACT responsibilities

November 12, 2014 CACT

(1) recap of meeting with Council

(2) set milestones for December and January

December 10, 2014 CACT (1) review of draft program
January 14, 2015 CACT

(1) Neighborhood Working Group and Neighborhood Representative

(2) Program Timeout

(3) Rolling Applications

(4) Application Waiting Period

(5) Traffic Calming versus Traffic Control

(6) Voting Representation

(7) Case Prioritization

February 11, 2015 CACT (1) final review of draft program and recommendation to Council
February 17, 2015 City Council work session (1) review draft program
February 23, 2015 City Council meeting (1) Consideration for Adopting Updated Program