Celebrating New Crystal City Multimodal Center

Published on May 18, 2017

  • Improves access to Crystal City Metrorail station

  • Expanded bus capacity and enhanced street infrastructure

  • New designated zone for private shuttles and passenger drop-offs/pick-ups

  • New two-way operations on South Bell Street

Arlington County Board Chair and Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA) member Jay Fisette, along with NVTA Chairman Martin E. Nohe, county officials and representatives from the NVTA, celebrated the completion of Arlington's new Crystal City Multimodal Center today at a ceremony outside the Crystal City Metrorail Station.

Located on 18th Street South under the U.S. Route 1 bridge, the center expands bus capacity around the Metro station with the addition of four new bus bays that provide both regional and local bus service. The project also creates a safer and more efficient area for the more than 20,000 people who travel to and from this Metro station each day, with new designated curb space for shuttles and kiss-n-ride, new bus shelters and bicycle racks, improved sidewalks and crosswalks, and new lighting.

"With these infrastructure improvements, Arlington is making it easier and safer for people travelling to and through Crystal City — whether they are arriving by bus, Metro, on foot or by car," Fisette said. "It's the latest example of how the County continues to invest in Crystal City and continues to build on the community's vision of enhanced access and connectivity."

[caption id="attachment_12253" align="alignright" width="300"]Arlington County Board Chair Jay Fisette County Board Chair Jay Fisette speaking at Crystal City Multimodal Center celebration.[/caption]

The multimodal center was made possible thanks to $1.5 million in regional transportation funds from the NVTA. The NVTA is responsible for long-range planning, prioritization and funding of regional transportation projects in Northern Virginia.

NVTA Chairman Martin E. Nohe stated, "The NVTA is pleased to partner with Arlington County to expand transit capacity, access and connectivity in Crystal City. The NVTA has provided regional transportation funding for congestion reducing projects, such as new ART buses that will serve new bus routes, Metrorail traction power upgrades and station improvements, roadway capacity expansions and Intelligent Transportation System enhancements in Arlington County."

Expanded bus capacity

The multimodal center includes four new bus bays — three bays located on the south side of 18th Street, with the fourth on the north side. Featuring new shelters and seating for bus riders, the bays are currently being used for local bus service and Fairfax Connector, with Loudoun County Transit and PRTC/OmniRide commuter services expected to be added in the near future. Adjacent to the bus bays is a new designated zone for kiss-n-ride, as well as employer, residential and hotel shuttles. Space is also designated for the County's Mobile Commuter Store, which comes weekly and offers residents and commuters the opportunity to purchase SmarTrip cards, pick up transit schedules, and get help with trip planning.

Enhanced street infrastructure

The project made improvements to the street infrastructure around the Crystal City Metro Station, one of the higher ridership stations in Arlington. Concrete replaced the asphalt pavement under the Route 1 bridge, making the street more durable for the heavier bus traffic that is expected, and helping to brighten the underpass due to its lighter color. The sidewalks were rebuilt, new crosswalks were installed, and new lighting was added to the underpass. These improvements make it safer for pedestrians traveling along 18th Street South. The bike lane on 18th Street was also painted green to make it more visible for cyclists and drivers.

Improved connectivity

Travelers and commuters will also benefit from the conversion of South Bell Street to a two-way street. The County rebuilt the intersection of 18th Street South and Bell Street, adding a new traffic signal and making two-way operations possible. The changes to Bell Street improve connectivity, reconnect the street grid and fulfill recommendations from the Crystal City Sector Plan.

For more information about the new Crystal City Multimodal Center, visit the County website.