Potomac Yard Metrorail Station Planning Reaches Major Milestone with Completion of Final Environmental Impact Statement
The Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the new Potomac Yard Metrorail Station is now available for public review, marking a major milestone towards the City of Alexandria’s goal of increasing transportation choices and attracting transit-oriented development.
“The Potomac Yard Metrorail Station is one step closer to reality,” said Mayor Allison Silberberg. “The Final EIS reflects extensive community input and staff expertise and is the culmination of many years of coordination with the public, federal agencies, and other partners.”
As required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for major projects seeking federal funding, the EIS describes and summarizes the potential environmental impacts of the proposed new Metrorail station. The Draft EIS, issued in Spring 2015, evaluated the No Build Alternative and four Build Alternatives. Alternative B was selected by City Council in May 2015 as the Preferred Alternative.
The Final EIS compares the No Build Alternative with the Preferred Alternative; states how public comments received on the Draft EIS were addressed; incorporates further design and refinement of the project to minimize community and environmental impacts; and describes measures for avoiding, minimizing, or mitigating adverse impacts.
As project partners, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the National Park Service (NPS) have approved the Final EIS for public review. FTA and NPS will each issue a Record of Decision (ROD) following the 30-day review period of the Final EIS. FTA will respond to any new, substantive comments received regarding the Final EIS in the Record of Decision.
In conjunction with the Final EIS, the NPS has prepared a Draft Statement of Findings for Floodplains and Wetlands that analyzes the impacts of the proposed Potomac Yard Metrorail Station on floodplains and wetlands within the George Washington Memorial Parkway and adjacent Greens Scenic Area easement. Public comments will be accepted from June 10 through July 11.
The official 30-day review period for the Final EIS ends on July 11, 2016. The document is available online and can also be reviewed at several facilities throughout the City, including the following locations:
- Alexandria Office of City Clerk – 301 King St., Room 2300, Alexandria
- James M. Duncan Branch Library – 2501 Commonwealth Ave., Alexandria
- Charles E. Beatley, Jr. Central Library – 5005 Duke St., Alexandria
- Cora Kelly Recreation Center – 25 West Reed Ave., Alexandria
- Aurora Hills Branch Library – 735 S. 18th St., Arlington
- Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), Office of the Secretary,
600 Fifth Street, NW Room 2D-209, Washington, DC
Comments may be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to: Potomac Yard Metrorail Station EIS, P.O. Box 16531, Alexandria, VA 22302.
The Potomac Yard Metrorail Station would be built on Metrorail’s Yellow and Blue Lines, between the existing Braddock Road and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport stations, and is expected to generate billions of dollars in new private sector investment. The resulting development around the station would support up to 26,000 new jobs within one-quarter mile, and 13,000 new residents within one-half mile, while removing thousands of private vehicles from the congested Route 1 corridor.
The new station is anticipated to be funded through a variety of sources — including new tax revenue primarily from development around the station, regional transportation authority grants, developer contributions, and special tax district revenue – without the need for any additional local funds. This means that most residents and businesses in Alexandria will not have to contribute existing local tax revenues to the station’s construction.