Alexandria, Virginia residents in the Carlyle neighborhood can 'park' themselves at John Carlyle Square Park with FREE WI-FI for those who absolutely must stay connected.

Alexandria, Virginia residents in the Carlyle neighborhood can ‘park’ themselves at John Carlyle Square Park with FREE Wi-Fi for those who absolutely must stay connected.

The public Wi-Fi is up-and-running now and the service will be available year-round in the Carlyle area.Users can connect via CarlyleConnected Wi-Fi.

What other improvements in Carlyle should be added in addition to these changes at John Carlyle Square Park this summer? ‘Like’ us on Facebook and leave a comment to join the conversation.

The new WI-FI service is in partnership with the Carlyle Vitality Initiative and the Carlyle Community Council.

Duke Street Pedestrian Tunnel
Carlyle shuttle service and pedestrian tunnel operating schedule follows the federal government schedule. The federal government is closing its DC metropolitan area offices today at noon. The Carlyle shuttle and Duke St pedestrian tunnel schedule for the blizzard is:

  • Shuttle service: Carlyle shuttle will run its afternoon service earlier today from noon until 2 pm
  • Duke St. Pedestrian Tunnel:  Tunnel will close at 2 pm today and be closed on Saturday

If the federal government is closed on Monday, there will be no Carlyle shuttle service and the tunnel will be closed. 

 

John Carlyle Square Park Fountain - May 2012

As readers know, the City of Alexandria Health Department forced the Carlyle Community Council (CCC) to shut down the John Carlyle Square Park interactive fountain in summer 2012. Since that time, the CCC has been working diligently with the Health Department and the vendors that serve the Carlyle neighborhood of Alexandria community to get the fountain back up and running.

After a LONG and very THOROUGH review of the interactive fountain, the Health Department gave its blessing today to have the fountain run once more. The residents in Carlyle responded this way.

The long-delayed project to remove the temporary security measures around the Federal Courthouse in Carlyle and install a new, more permanent, may be coming to a head soon. See the video above from the May meeting of the National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC) where the NCPC gives its approval for the project. Starting at approx. 5:09 in the video, the presenter goes over the plans for the Courthouse.

Some of the improvements include:

  • Removal of jersey barriers around the Courthouse
  • The installation of garden walls and secure bollards around the site.
  • The movement of existing parking spaces from Jamieson Ave to Elizabeth Lane.
  • The reopening of Courthouse Square to one-way traffic (this should benefit the Westin Alexandria the most).
    • This includes pop-up bollards on Courthouse Square which can be popped up in case of a BIG trial at the Courthouse.

The City of Alexandria report on this project is located at this link. The presentation, which shows what the final design looks like can be found at this link. The final details are being worked out between the GSA, the City of Alexandria, and the Carlyle Community Council. IMHO, I would look for construction to start sometime this fall.

Carlyle Shuttle Bus is making a comeback
As one of the resident representatives on the Carlyle Community Council (CCC), it is my job to keep folks up-to-date and informed of what is happening with the Master Property Owners Association that oversees Carlyle.

By now, you’ve probably seen the following post about the DASH lunch loop being terminated this Friday (8/31). The Carlyle Shuttle Bus is also making a return to service as well.

See the following memo sent out by the CCC today:

New Private Shuttle Service to King Street Metro Station

Effective October 1, 2012, the morning and evening rush hour shuttle bus service will be offered by a new, private shuttle company, Blue Ridge Transportation, instead of DASH bus service. This new private shuttle service offers a number of service improvements including:

  1. Free Rides: The Carlyle shuttle will be free to any workers, residents or visitors in Carlyle. You will no longer need to show a DASH monthly pass* or PTO i.d. badge to ride for free.
  2. Stops at VRE Station: The new shuttle service will include a stop at the VRE station.
  3. Dedicated Drivers: Blue Ridge will designate dedicated drivers who will be knowledgeable on the route, the Carlyle area and over time will become a familiar face for shuttle riders.
  4. Route and Stop Flexibility: The shuttle bus will operate on a circular route running approximately every ten minutes. If the shuttle stops or schedule need adjusting, there is the flexibility to customize it to best serve the Carlyle community.
  5. Smaller Shuttle buses: The Blue Ridge fleet of shuttles will be 20 -25 passenger vehicles that are easier to navigate through the Carlyle Community.
  6. More Cost-effective Service: The new shuttle service will result in cost savings that the CCC Transportation Management Plan (TMP) can direct towards enhanced or new transit services.

*As DASH will no longer be the shuttle operator, they are discontinuing the distribution of monthly DASH passes that were required to access their shuttle service. In addition, DASH will be altering its bus routes and stops through Carlyle. If you would like to provide input on those changes, please contact DASH General Manager, Sandy Modell at 703.746.5642.

Carsharing

Per a request made by the Carlyle Community Council, the City will be selecting a carsharing service provider for Carlyle in September. Two dedicated on-street parking spaces have been selected for Carlyle – one on the 1900 block of Ballenger – and one on the 2000 block of Ballenger. The new service is projected to begin in October and we will keep you apprised of the launch date. Carsharing offers commuters the option of a short term car rental for quick trips during the work day for doctor appointments, meetings, or just running errands. For residents, carsharing makes it easier to be car-free so you can live in Carlyle and rely on transit, but have the convenience of having a car readily available for weekend outings, shopping or appointments.

Bikeshare

Alexandria has begun installing eight Capital Bikeshare stations that will be completed in early September. Once all the stations are completed, the network in Alexandria will become operational.

The pilot program will locate eight stations primarily in the Old Town area. The closest station to Carlyle is the King Street-Old Town Metro station.

Bike sharing is a service in which public bicycles are made available for shared use. Cities around the world provide bike sharing systems as a transportation option for residents and visitors. The program is currently in Washington, D.C., and Arlington County with over 1,600 bicycles located at over 175 stations. Users can pick up and drop off bikes at designated stations by either registering online or at a station. Noted as a great success, Capital Bikeshare claims more than 70,000 daily and weekly memberships and 15,000 annual memberships. Capital Bikeshare has generated over 2 million rides.

The Carlyle Community Council has been working with the City to explore the possibility of bringing Bikeshare stations into Carlyle. We will keep you posted on our progress.

SmarTrip Cards

Starting in early 2013, the CCC Transportation Management Plan (TMP) will be phasing in use of SmarTrip cards and phasing out distribution of paper fare cards. SmarTrip cards can be used for Metro trains and Metrobus, DASH, and the VRE. Look for announcements this fall for transit fairs to explain the advantages of SmarTrip benefits.

For more information on these changes, contact me at this link, you can also contact the Carlyle Community Council, or leave your comments below.

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