ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Alexandria mayor Justin Wilson tweeted that the Holmes Run Trail should start seeing reopening of a damage section in the next year.
Responding to my tweet, the mayor provided this update:
The city closed that bridge in October 2019 following a failed inspection.
Longer waits for western portions
Two other gaps will take longer to fix. Most notably, the gap that tunnels under Van Dorn Street and Interstate 395.
Alexandria’s fiscal year begins July 1 annually. Reopening
as late as June 30, 2023 would still be within the timeline the mayor outlined. That’s in line with previous estimates for trail restoration.
Ripley to Beauregard
A July 8, 2019 storm washed out the Holmes Run Trail between the Ripley Street Bridge (opened in 2018) and the tunnel under N. Van Dorn Street. It has been barricaded ever since. A signed “high water” detour directs trail users up Pickett Street and Richenbacher Avenue, past N. Van Dorn Street (where it becomes Sanger Avenue) to Beauregard Street.
West of Beauregard
Since 2018, a portion of the trail west of Beauregard Street has been closed due to erosion.
Holmes Run Trail history
It appears the Alexandria portion was not completed until the late 1990s, according to this old ADC DC Bike Map.
The Fairfax County portion to Columbia Pike was completed around 2010, I believe. Since then, it seems like the Holmes Run Trail is never whole. The Fairfax County portion was disrupted by a sewer line break in 2013.
Now in the midst of pandemic, I am concerned the commitment to restoration will be threatened. Local
civic motorist associations have mobilized against bicycle infrastructure. The data doesn’t support their claims, but they feel threatened by bike lanes and city resources used on things that do celebrate single-occupancy vehicles to the exclusion of all else.
It’s time to see the increase in bicycle usage turn into political power.