Barcroft Neighborhood Comments on NFATC Assessment and Expansion Plans
From: Christopher Kupczyk
Date: Jan 14, 2017 5:53:45 PM
Subject: Barcroft neighborhood comments on NFATC assessment and expansion plan
To: Alexis Gray (GSA)
Cc: Randy Swart, Lander Allin
Dear Ms. Gray
The Barcroft School and Civic League (BSCL) is submitting the following comments on the environmental assessment for the possible expansion of the National Foreign Affairs Training Center (NFATC). The BSCL has struggled for decades to improve our neighborhood's access through the Arlington Hall campus to the Thomas Jefferson Community Center and other destinations to our east.
The call for a trail through this appeared in both the 1989 and 2008 editions of the Barcroft Neighborhood Conservation Plan. Our request was that "North-south and east-west public pedestrian and bicycle access through the site should be provided." We were dismayed to learn that the proposed expansion calls for eliminating the trail that now exists on the southern perimeter of the Arlington Hall site.
Further, the trail linking Barcroft and 3rd St South/Glebe Road is included in the Arlington County Master Transportation Plan Bicycle Element (https://arlingtonva.s3.dualstack.us-east-1.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/31/2014/02/DES-MTP-Bicycle-Element.pdf). Arlington County has been on record as supporting this trail extension for more than ten years. The Plan is on the web atThat plan says: "Provide an east ]west connection between Glebe Road at 2nd Street S. and S. Pershing Drive at Arlington Boulevard. Use the existing George Mason Drive underpass to traverse the Arlington Hall and connect to the Arlington Boulevard bikeway and the Thomas Jefferson Community Center via local streets. (Arlington, Foreign Service Institute) (0.5 mile)."
Finally, we have grave concerns about the potential traffic impacts on any expansion of the NFATC. George Mason Drive, the main roadway on our eastern border, and a major north-south commuter route through Arlington, continues to experience extremely heavy traffic volume on weekdays as a result of the number of personnel who arrived at the National Guard Center a few years ago under the latest Base Realignment and Closure personnel moves. We strongly encourage further study on traffic impacts to surrounding neighborhoods and the creation of effective mitigation strategies.
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this assessment, and I urge you to consider our needs and those of the Alcova Heights neighborhood in any new NFATC plans.