Little River Turnpike motorists and pedestrians are now enjoying improved traffic flow and sidewalks between the city of Fairfax and Northern Virginia Community College due to a $10.6 million project by Capitol Paving of D.C. Inc.
The project was completed three months ahead of schedule.
Eight intersections along a 2.2-mi. stretch from Pickett Road to Lake Drive now have upgraded turn lanes, new drainage systems, sidewalks, median islands and upgraded traffic signals. The intersections are Pickett Road, Guinea Road, Old Hickory Road, Wakefield Chapel Road, Prosperity Avenue, Woodburn Road and Lake Drive.
“These intersection improvements on Little River Turnpike make it safer and smoother for motorists and pedestrians alike,” said VDOT District Administrator Morteza Salehi.
Construction included 31,000 cu. yd. (23,700 cu m) of dirt; 23,000 tons (20,900 t) of asphalt; 48,840 tons (44,300 t) of aggregate; 3,575 ft. (1,090 m) of new sidewalk; 35,000 linear ft. (10,700 m) of median; and six new traffic signals.
During preliminary construction, VDOT uncovered about 30 graves that were part of the Guinea Road Cemetery, formerly known as the Gibson/Parker Cemetery. The remains were of slaves from the Fitzhugh Plantation, dating back to the late 1700s. The graves were reburied in the Pleasant Valley Memorial Park.
The Little River Turnpike improvements began in June 1994 when VDOT conducted a corridor study to identify possible improvements to enhance traffic flow and safety. A public hearing was conducted in December 2001 to gather public input. Construction started in April 2007, and although the contract completion date was Oct. 31, VDOT completed the project more than three months early on July 11.