BRAC Project Will Help Reduce Bethesda Traffic Congestion
Staff at WRNMMC has increased from about 8,000 to nearly 11,600 and the number of visitors, most of whom arrive by car, has doubled to nearly one million. In 2007, Montgomery County and State of Maryland officials, together with community leaders and the U.S. Navy, created a comprehensive mobility plan to address the traffic impacts of BRAC through projects that improve traffic flow at key intersections and provide better pedestrian and bicycle access.
Montgomery County and the State of Maryland began implementing the plan, but additional resources were needed to complete it. The County’s congressional delegation, Senators Barbara Mikulski and Ben Cardin and Congressman Chris Van Hollen, succeeded in obtaining nearly $120 million from the Federal government to make all the changes needed.
The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) has completed construction of the following new and upgraded hiker-biker paths and sidewalks to serve the Medical Center with the help of a U.S. Department of Defense grant:
- A hiker-biker path along Jones Bridge Road from Rockville Pike to Connecticut Avenue, provides a connection to the Capital Crescent and Rock Creek trails;
- A hiker-biker path along Cedar Lane, from Rockville Pike to Old Georgetown Road, and a wider Cedar Lane bridge across Rock Creek connects to the Bethesda Trolley and Rock Creek trails; and
- New and improved sidewalks and bike paths serve the Medical Center on Rockville Pike and in the Battery Lane neighborhood.
- Add a southbound left turn lane onto Wilson Drive (at the National Institutes of Health) from westbound Cedar Lane.
- Add a northbound right turn lane onto Cedar Lane from North Wood Drive, Naval Support Activity Bethesda.
- Add a morning rush hour signal for southbound left turns onto North Wood Drive, Naval Support Activity Bethesda.
- Increase space for more vehicles waiting to turn left going southbound at North Wood Drive, Naval Support Activity Bethesda.
- Increase space for more vehicles waiting to turn left going northbound at the National Institutes of Health commercial vehicle inspection facility.
- Replace two culverts beneath Rockville Pike/MD 355 at Cedar Lane.
- Restripe Cedar Lane (no lanes added) to facilitate turns and traffic flow.
- Rockville Pike at Jones Bridge Road
- Connecticut Avenue at Jones Bridge Road
- Old Georgetown Road at Cedar Lane
More detailed information on the Bethesda area BRAC projects is available on the County’s website.