Vision Zero December Updates

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Vision Zero in Arlington

December 2022

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Make Plans to Celebrate Safely this Holiday Season

CCM Alcohol

The holidays are here – make plans to get home safely after celebrating. So far in 2022, 3 out of 4 fatal crashes in Arlington have involved alcohol. Drunk driving crashes are at least twice as likely to result in a serious outcome. Think before you drink and encourage others around you to do the same. Learn more about Arlington’s Vision Zero Critical Crash Campaign here.  

Guest post: Meet community member Elisa Ortiz and learn about how you can help make neighborhood streets safer!

Neighborhood Complete Streets Logo

My name is Elisa Ortiz and I am the Chair of the Neighborhood Complete Streets Commission. The Commission is made up of volunteers (appointed by the County Board) who focus on making neighborhood streets in Arlington safe and welcoming for all users including pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists. 


To do this, we meet regularly and work with County staff to review projects in Arlington that would help improve safety. For each project, we work with folks in the local neighborhood to identify what we can do to make their streets safer and more accessible. 

If you are interested in joining or learning more about the Commission and the work we do, please check out the Arlington County website, attend one of our quarterly meetings, or contact me directly. With only a few hours of your time each year, you can make a difference in Arlington! 


Help make streets safer – Learn more and apply to be a NCSC member.

Mid-Year Meeting Recap

On the evening of Tues, Dec 6, the Vision Zero External Stakeholders Group, members of the community, and Arlington County staff met to discuss progress and feedback on Arlington’s Vision Zero Action Plan. About 40 people attended the meeting.


Staff presented highlights from the Vision Zero Year 2 Mid-Year Report and discussed upcoming activities and initiatives. At the meeting, County partners including Rosslyn BID, the Pedestrian Advisory Committee (PAC), Arlington Families for Safe Streets, and Neighborhood Complete Streets also shared their program updates. A robust discussion with members of the community and representatives from the External Stakeholder Groups followed the presentation, focusing on the status of the Vision Zero program and future needs to help achieve our goal of zero transportation related severe or fatal injuries. The bullets below summarize many of the comments that we heard during the meeting:

  • Ensure that safety is the primary decision-making factor during planning and design
  • Include more information about the impacts and effects of our actions in the progress reports
  • Promote a cultural shift in Arlington where everyone thinks about safety first
  • Increase safety infrastructure/enforcement around schools and school buses
  • Share information and updates on the upcoming speed camera program
  • Install more pilots and quick builds – fast action with low-cost materials  
  • Add traffic calming and speed reduction all around
  • Continue to grow education about Vision Zero (ideas included media coverage, community contests, public demonstrations, and coverage of projects)
  • Increase accessibility and transparency of community report a problem channels

In response to the polls at the meeting:

  • Two thirds of those that responded to the poll said the program met or exceeded expectations.
  • The top three actions that the community wanted to see more of were:

The mid-year meeting presentation and recording are available on the website for anyone who missed it. You can direct any questions or comments regarding the program to Christine Baker, the Vision Zero Program Manager at any time.

John Marshall Dr and Little Falls Rd Intersection Improvements Update

Tactical design improvements were installed in mid-December at Little Falls Rd between John Marshall Dr & N Kensington St. This quick-build project was identified as a response to a critical crash, and the plans were presented at a community meeting in mid-November.

John Marshall

The improvements at John Marshall Dr include:

  • Addition of a high visibility crosswalk on the south crosswalk
  • Tactical curb extensions to sharpen/slow down turning vehicle turns and reduce crossing distances
  • Additional signage

Improvements at N Lexington St include:

  • Bus stop/sharrow markings
  • High visibility crosswalks
  • A tactical curb extension to sharpen/slow down turning vehicle turns and reduce crossing distances.

Improvements at N Kensington St (north side) include:

  • High visibility crosswalks
  • Tactical curb extensions to sharpen/slow down turning vehicle turns and reduce crossing distances
  • Enhanced signage at the crossing over Little Falls Rd
  • Changing the yield to a stop sign (south side).

These improvements are currently in progress and will ultimately encourage slower vehicle speeds, and improved pedestrian and transit maneuvers.


Additionally, DES is conducting an all-way stop evaluation and is collecting footage of the Little Falls Rd and John Marshall Dr intersection to monitor operations between all road users. These evaluations will be considered as DES plans for permanent intersection improvements.

S Carlin Springs Rd School Zone Updates

Carlin Springs

Did you know that S Carlin Springs Rd is Arlington’s longest beaconed school zone in the County? It spans almost ¾ of a mile, from US-50 to 7th St S and covers three school areas: Kenmore Middle, Carlin Springs Elementary, and Campbell Elementary. The school zone also extends east on 5th Rd S from Carlin Springs Rd to the county line to cover the main entranceway to Carlin Springs Elementary school. The school zone speed limit is 20MPH compared to the existing 30MPH speed limit (which is currently being reassessed as part of the Vision Zero comprehensive review of speed limits that are 30mph or more in the County).


To increase awareness and promote the 20MPH speed limit at school arrival and dismissal hours, the County recently added new “SCHOOL ZONE” pavement markings throughout the school zones to remind drivers that they are still in a school zone. The pavement markings are accompanied by additional school zone signage, which indicates the hours at which the 20mph speed limit is applicable: 7-8AM and 2:30-3:30PM.


Arlington Police are assisting in promoting safe speeds along the S Carlin Springs Rd corridor through sporadic use of portable speed feedback indicator signs to alert drivers of their speeds and VMS signage to alert drivers of high pedestrian traffic along the corridor.

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Phase 2 of School Slow Zones Anticipated in Early 2023

20 MPH

Given positive community feedback on the demonstration 20mph school slow zones installed early this year, the Vision Zero team has developed school slow zone plans for 13 additional schools in coordination with APS staff:

  • Barrett Elementary
  • Campbell Elementary
  • Carlin Springs Elementary
  • Alice West Fleet Elementary + Jefferson Middle*
  • Kenmore Middle
  • Montessori Public School of Arlington + Arlington Community High + Arlington Career Center*
  • Swanson Middle
  • Williamsburg Middle + Discovery Elementary*
  • Nottingham Elementary

*Indicates a combined school slow zone


School slow zones are 20MPH speed limits (applicable at all times of day) on neighborhood streets within 600 ft of a school access point. The school slow zone updates include retrofitting the entire school zone to ensure high visibility crossings and school zone signage within the school zone, as well as appropriate speed limits on the school’s beaconed arterial roadway s.

In January 2023, the County Board will vote on an amendment to Chapter 14.2 of the Arlington County Code, which will codify the 20mph school slow zone speed limit policy countywide. If the Board grants approval, the County intends to being the installation of the school slow zone signage and school zone retrofits in February 2023. Check out this flyer for more information about the School Slow Zones!

What We're Working On

Quick-builds in Progress:

  • Clarendon Blvd & N Danville St
  • Fairfax Dr and N Jefferson St
  • 14th St & N Rolfe
  • Wilson Blvd crossing between N Oak St and N Pierce St
  • N Ohio St & 18th St N

Recently Completed Quick-builds:

  • Little Falls Rd & John Marshall Dr – Project Sheet
  • Clarendon Blvd & Quinn S – Project Sheet Coming Soon!
  • Fairfax Dr & N Taylor St – Project Sheet Coming Soon!
  • Yorktown Blvd & N Edison St – Project Sheet
  • N Harrison St & 26th St N – Project Sheet


Visit the Vision Zero Safety Projects page to learn more about safety-driven quick build projectss, capital projects, pilot projects, High-Injury Network safety audits, and more.