CSX expects to start more street closures along Virginia Avenue, SE this week, many of which will remain closed throughout the remainder of the project. In CSX’s latest update, they also noted that a number of mature trees mature had to be removed and that “Unfortunately these are only replaceable with smaller trees, which will be done in compliance with the D.C. Urban Forestry Preservation Act and in coordination with the Urban Forestry Administration.”
Beginning Monday, 6/29, Daytime Lane Closures on Virginia Ave. between 5th and 7th Street
Our work on Virginia Avenue between 5th Street and 7th Street, S.E., was delayed. We now anticipate that, beginning Monday, June 29, temporary lane closures on eastbound Virginia Avenue between 5th and 7th Streets will occur each day between 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. These temporary closings are necessary to allow for additional utility-relocation work and installation of temporary street lighting. This work is expected to continue for approximately two to three (2-3) weeks.
Update on Closing of Virginia Ave. between 4th Street and 5th Street
Also next week we expect to completely close Virginia Avenue between 4th Street and 5th Street. This closing will occur on or about Wednesday, July 1, and will last for the duration of the project. It is necessary for construction of the new tunnel. Pedestrians and drivers should expect to follow detours around the closed section of Virginia Avenue, primarily by using K Street S.E. for eastbound travel between 4th and 5th Streets.
Virginia Ave. Closed between 2nd Street and 3rd Street
Virginia Avenue between 2nd Street and 3rd Street was closed completely to traffic and parking on Wednesday, June 24. This closure will last through the duration of the tunnel-reconstruction project. Extensive signage is in place to guide drivers around the Virginia Avenue closure at 2nd Street. The recommended alternative route for eastbound travel is east on I Street, south on 4th Street, east on K Street, north on 5th Street and then east on Virginia Avenue.
Post-Construction Restoration of Landscaping
We have heard concerns from several neighbors about CSX’s plans to restore the landscaping, including plantings by residents, in areas that will be disturbed by the construction process.
To clarify, CSX intends to restore the landscaping in the public space areas as they exist today regardless of who installed and maintains them, provided they do not conflict with any District specifications or regulations. This includes replacing landscaping beds, shrubs, flowers and other plants that may be disturbed during the course of construction. We are currently developing a plan to inventory the landscaping and plantings that will be impacted by the project, to ensure we are able to restore the plantings when the project is complete. We will share more information about this process when we have finalized our plan.
The one exception will be the mature trees that are removed. Unfortunately these are only replaceable with smaller trees, which will be done in compliance with the D.C. Urban Forestry Preservation Act and in coordination with the Urban Forestry Administration.
This commitment is consistent with our restoration obligations under the FHWA Record of Decision for the project, which are described beginning on page 40 of the document (http://ow.ly/OPMzv).
New Text Service Available
CSX has added an additional information option for neighbors: you can now subscribe to a text-message service to receive updates about the project. This is a direct result of a suggestion from a Virginia Avenue neighbor and we are hopeful that it makes it convenient for more neighbors to stay up-to-date. Details about signing up are available here: http://ow.ly/OPI4a.
We appreciate your interest in the Virginia Avenue Tunnel Reconstruction Project. For more information, we encourage you to visit www.virginiaavenuetunnel.com, stop by the CSX Community Office or call CSX at (800) 494-1049.