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Road Improvements Coming to New Costco Intersection

The company is paying for the new features, according to county.

Costco Wholesale, set to open in 2013, will make a number of transportation and transit improvements at its new location on Richmond Highway.

Since the new business was announced, some local residents have feared more congestion will surround the Richmond Highway/Ladson Lane intersection to the southeast of the Costco property. Lee District Supervisor Jeff McKay said while some drivers may remain frustrated, Costco’s improvements are better than the alternative.

“I’m glad we’re getting some improvements to this, in that, without Costco, we probably never would have gotten,” he said.

McKay added: “Obviously, there’s going to be more traffic in the area, but one of the things I think people often forget was, it was not a Costco or nothing. The choice was a Costco, going through a public hearing, getting transportation improvements—or a larger shopping center that could have been built there by-right … with no transportation improvements.”

Two main entrances will serve the Costco. One access point will face Ladson Lane, while the other will be located off of Richmond Highway. The Richmond Highway entrance will provide only for right turns onto the property from southbound highway lanes and right turns off of the property onto southbound Richmond Highway, said Marcus Wadsworth, staff assistant to McKay.

All Costco parking will be free, he said.

Also, at all intersections and entrances at the site, drivers will be able to see opposing traffic through clear lines of sight, unobscured by landscaping.

Costco is paying for all the improvements, Wadsworth said. Other improvements include:

  • Bike racks, likely on Costco’s property near the store entrances
  • The construction and maintenance of a foot trail fronting Richmond Highway between the Walmart property and Ladson Lane
  • A bus shelter pad and pedestrian trail connection near the intersection of Richmond Highway and Ladson Lane
  • A 67-foot right-of-way dedication, which gives land to the county, and a 21-foot right-of-way reservation, which means giving the county the right to ask for that land in the future, from Costco’s property fronting Richmond Highway
  • A right-turn lane from Richmond Highway onto Ladson Lane
  • Dual left-turn lanes from northbound Richmond Highway into the Walmart entrance at the intersection with Sherwood Hall Lane
  • An analysis or re-timing of local traffic signals, if required per individual analysis
  • And an evaluation of a proposed U-turn lane on southbound Richmond Highway

Costco has maintained the development would not have a “significantly higher impact than an operational movie theater located on the same site."

In its traffic-impact analysis submitted to the Fairfax County Planning Commission, Costco analysts predicted that 737 new peak-hour trips on Saturday and 4,496 new daily trips on weekdays would occur after completion of the store. According to VDOT, Richmond Highway handles about 60,000 vehicles per day.

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T Ailshire May 11, 2012 at 01:58 PM
"Costco has maintained the development would not have a “significantly higher impact than an operational movie theater located on the same site." Interesting, since there has not been an "operational" movie theater there in 9 years or more. The theater, when I moved here in 2003, was doing little daytime business and not noticeably more at night. It had nearly no impact on traffic.
Roxanne May 12, 2012 at 02:26 AM
I worked @ Mt. Vernon from 2000-2004 daytime shift and for the most part during the week day & night times we'd hardly get any customers in there. It would depend on what movies were playing. I have a friend who was one of our Security guards at night and it would be pretty much dead during the week. Friday-Saturday nights was busy. When schools were closed (Holidays/Summer) it would be packed with kids all over the place. Friday to Sunday night was a busy time though. Too bad it "only" took them 9 years to figure out what to do with the building.
Wi Not May 12, 2012 at 07:40 PM
Too bad that WalMart at Penn Daw has not done what COSTCO is doing, rather, they created additional gridlock!
Cathy Hosek May 13, 2012 at 12:44 AM
I find it amusing that the first two improvements aren't really going to improve anything: Bike racks, likely on Costco’s property near the store entrances The construction and maintenance of a foot trail fronting Richmond Highway between the Walmart property and Ladson Lane - isn't the point of Costco to buy items in bulk? How are people going to walk or bike there? Not sure I like the evaluation of a proposed U-turn lane on southbound Richmond Highway. That just sounds like a bottleneck maker to me.
cmvoorhees May 13, 2012 at 01:01 AM
If the Board of Supervisors adopted the Transportation Impact Fee zoning regulations which the VA General Assembly gave them the authority to do over 20 years ago, transportation infrastructure improvements would be paid for by the developer. There would be no question. Why hasn't the Board of Supervisors adopted the Transportation Impact Fee?
Greg May 14, 2012 at 02:54 PM
Regarding the Wal-Mart comment above......Costco owns the property at 7940....Wal-Mart leases the property in Penn Daw. There would have been a really nice mixed use project there, who would have redesigned the intersection had it not gotten shot down by the community.
Bill Cook May 15, 2012 at 04:03 PM
Bike racks do seem odd, but the store will employ a lot of people, and it is conceivable that some of the people who work there may use them.
Ulyana Cruz August 03, 2012 at 04:45 PM
So, is there a specfic date for Costco to open beyond 2013? Wasn't the store scheduled to open in 2012? Just wondering
Fifi February 07, 2013 at 11:32 PM
I want to apply for this location , I don't know where I can find the applications

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