New I-66 toll lane designs feature trails, new structures, power station relocation

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

WASHINGTON — Under the latest designs for new toll lanes on Interstate 66 outside the Capital Beltway, a Metro power substation would be relocated, much of a jogging and bike trail would be next to the highway, and drivers would see dozens of new bridges, toll gantries and traffic patterns.

The refined designs will serve as the basis of final public hearings next month. Construction work could begin before the end of the year, with the most significant work ramping up along much of the 22-mile corridor between the Beltway and Gainesville, Virginia, in the first half of 2018.

The lanes are scheduled to open in 2022. They will be free for cars with three or more people and an E-ZPass Flex switched to HOV mode, while other vehicles will be charged a variable toll that rises or falls based on the amount of traffic in the toll lanes.

The multicolored final designs can be complicated to read, with curling purple aerial structures, dashed lines for potential noise walls, red toll lanes, yellow general purpose lanes and orange ramps next to thin red lines that mark the home and business property that will be taken or purchased by the project.

Among the details in the designs:

  • Express Lanes users will be able to enter or exit the toll lanes at Monument Drive in any direction at all times of day. The designs add new ramps. There would still be no access to Monument Drive from the regular lanes.
  • A significant redesign of the I-66/Chain Bridge Road (VA-123) interchange, including a complete rebuild of Chain Bridge Road through the interchange.
  • The project will pay to move a Metro power substation near the Dunn Loring Metro station that the private companies designing, building and operating the two toll lanes in each direction next to three regular I-66 lanes had initially suggested building a ramp over as a way to save money. A vocal group of neighbors opposed that, and Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe told WTOP in April that the designs would be reworked. Instead, a shorter ramp between the regular eastbound lanes and the toll lanes will provide access.
  • Recently, proponents of a jogging and bike path that is part of the project expressed concerns about a significant portion of the route running directly next to the highway. The final design proposals would put a majority of the trail being built directly as part of the project next to the highway, either inside the sound wall or next to the highway in an area where no new sound wall is proposed. In Prince William County, only three small segments of the trail are being built as part of the project. Each of those segments runs along a road other than I-66.

Other highlights (from east to west):

  • A new park and ride off Balls Ford Road near Manassas National Battlefield would have an entrance and exit only to and from the express lanes to and from the east. Like other park and ride structures planned as part of the project, it would include a bus area, kiss and ride, and slugging area. The park and ride would be expanded by 2040.
  • Past the battlefield, a new separated exit for Sudley Road (234) and flyover ramps allowing drivers in the regular lanes to move into the express lanes toward the Beltway or out of the regular lanes toward Gainesville, a shift for the rest area pavement, and new bridges for I-66 and Bull Run Drive will carry traffic.
  • In Centreville, drivers in the express lanes will not have a direct exit to U.S. 29.
  • Major changes for Route 28 are a key part of the project. The new interchange, to be surrounded by sound walls, includes crossings for the bike and jogging trail, at least 10 new bridges for highway traffic, and changes on Route 28 that would connect Walney Road and Braddock Road over Route 28, add a new service road out of E.C. Lawrence Park to avoid the current turn onto or off 28, and there will be a new extension of Poplar Tree Road across Route 28 to connect to Stonecroft Boulevard behind Sully Station Shopping Center.

This is the design plan for the I-66-Route 28 interchange.

(Courtesy Express Mobility Partners/VDOT)
  • At Stringfellow Road, drivers in the toll lanes headed eastbound will have an option to move to the regular lanes. Only drivers in the toll lanes headed westbound will have an option to exit at Stringfellow Road, and the only entrance will be for drivers headed eastbound in the toll lanes. That entrance and exit are scheduled to be open around the clock. I-66 will cross over Stringfellow Road on new bridges, which will include extended eastbound exit lanes for drivers going to or from the Fairfax County Parkway. Additional extended entrance and exit lanes are planned around U.S. 50.
  • As noted above, the Monument Drive exit would expand to allow entrance and exit in both directions (to the toll lanes only).
  • At the Route 50 interchange, not all drivers would have direct access to the toll lanes or from the toll lanes to Route 50. The designs call for adding an entrance from westbound 50 to the westbound toll lanes and an exit from the eastbound toll lanes to eastbound 50. Drivers in the regular lanes would continue to have the option to exit or enter in any direction.
(Courtesy Express Mobility Partners/VDOT)
  • The interchange with VA-123/Chain Bridge Road would be revamped to reduce the number of curving ramps and add traffic lights at several I-66 exits. Drivers will be able to exit or enter the toll lanes in either direction. The interchange includes trail connection crossings and a new bridge to carry VA-123.
(Courtesy Express Mobility Partners/VDOT)
  • A series of projects around the Vienna Metro station would revamp traffic patterns there. To and from the west, the toll lanes will connect to a new Vaden Drive bridge to provide bus and carpool access. On the west side of the station, the I-66 and Nutley Street interchange will be completely rebuilt into what is known as a diverging diamond setup. From Nutley Street, drivers will have direct access to only the regular lanes.
(Courtesy Express Mobility Partners/VDOT)
  • As noted above, in the Dunn Loring area, the designs now propose relocating a Metro power substation to the south side of I-66 just to the west of the development at the station. Express Mobility Partners did not immediately respond to a request for comment on whether they or the state would bear the cost of the change. Also in that area, Gallows Road would be realigned to the east, away from Stenwood Elementary School.
  • At the Capital Beltway, the existing maze of on and off ramps is set to get even more complex. A series of new bridges, entrances and exits, and stormwater management ponds will be constructed largely over and around the existing roadways. Drivers in both the toll and regular lanes will have exits or entrances to and from the regular lanes on the Beltway, I-66 and the toll lanes on each road.
(Courtesy Express Mobility Partners/VDOT)

The tolls on I-66 inside the Beltway are separate but related to this project. Those rush-hour only tolls begin for solo drivers in December.

The post New I-66 toll lane designs feature trails, new structures, power station relocation appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2ynGGWH

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

Advertisements

Experts expect worst season in years for fall foliage

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Tree experts say Virginia will experience its worst season in years for fall foliage.

The Virginian-Pilot reported Monday that a dry stretch over the summer is to blame. Trees that turn yellow are already browning, and trees that turn red aren’t reaching their full potential.

John Seiler, who teaches tree physiology at Virginia Tech, said that colors will be more muted because of the weeks of drought-like conditions in August. Rain from Tropical Storm Nate last week may salvage some trees, but many are beyond help.

The prospects look much the same up the East Coast. Expectations for a great season have dampened.

Despite the disappointment, Seiler says the best time to see fall foliage will be during the last weekend of October.

___

Information from: The Virginian-Pilot, http://pilotonline.com

The post Experts expect worst season in years for fall foliage appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2ypaORm

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

Virginia state-owned liquor stores sell nearly $1 billion

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia’s state-owned liquor stores had nearly $1 billion in sales last fiscal year.

A new report to state lawmakers from the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control says the state’s ABC stores had $940.1 million in sales last year. That’s up from $897.6 million the year before.

The department said it made $171.7 million in profits in fiscal 2017, up about $6.9 million from fiscal 2016.

Virginia is one of more than a dozen states that manages the sale and distribution of liquor.

The post Virginia state-owned liquor stores sell nearly $1 billion appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2you5CF

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

Reston contractor Triple Canopy to pay $2.6M to settle false claims suit

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

WASHINGTON — Security contractor Triple Canopy has agreed to pay $2.6 million to settle civil False Claims Act allegations that the company submitted false claims for payment to the Department of Defense for unqualified security guards stationed in Iraq.

Triple Canopy contracts with the government to provide private security protection forces for U.S. government and allied personnel abroad.

The settlement stems from a 2009 contract for security services at Al Asad Airbase in Iraq.

Triple Canopy, based in Reston, Virginia, was accused of billing the U.S. for security guards who could not pass required firearms proficiency tests designed by the Army to ensure that the guards were capable of firing their assigned weapons safely and accurately.

It also claimed that Triple Canopy concealed the guards’ inability to pass the firearms testing requirements by creating false test score cards it was required to maintain for government review.

The government’s claims were based on a whistleblower suit filed by a former employee of Triple Canopy in 2011.

Under terms of the False Claims Act, the unidentified whistleblower will share in the government’s recovery — in this case, $500,000.

“Contractors must be held accountable for their actions, especially when the safety of government personnel is at stake,” said Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, where the suit was filed. “This settlement should remind contractors of the high value we place on safeguarding our personnel abroad.”

The civil claims settled by the agreement are allegations only, and there has been no determination of civil liability.

Triple Canopy, formed by veteran U.S. Army Special Forces soldiers in 2003, merged with security contracting firm Academi in 2014, forming its parent company Constellis Group.

The post Reston contractor Triple Canopy to pay $2.6M to settle false claims suit appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2xKK7T2

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

UVa’s flash-funding projects address racism, community

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — The University of Virginia has awarded $100,000 to eight projects designed to improve culture, with a preference for those that address unconscious bias and racial tension.

The university’s vice provost for academic affairs, Archie Holmes, tells The Daily Progress the Flash Funding project had doled out all available funds within a month of issuing requests for proposals in September.

Holmes says university leaders conceived a diversity project last year, but the grant was inspired in August, by an Association of American Colleges and Universities funding initiative. Holmes especially praised three projects that focused on connecting the city and university.

The funded projects range from developing a community-driven checklist with which to approach future redevelopment projects, which received $25,000, to a sorority’s panel featuring LGBT speakers of color, which received $200.

___

Information from: The Daily Progress, http://ift.tt/11Z5idQ

The post UVa’s flash-funding projects address racism, community appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2xJO4HL

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

Man indicted on murder, rape charges in Muslim teen’s killing

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) — A grand jury has indicted a man on capital murder and rape charges in the killing of a 17-year-old girl whose death has rattled Northern Virginia’s Muslim community.

The Fairfax County Circuit Court panel handed up indictments Monday against Darwin Martinez-Torres. State law allows prosecutors to pursue a death penalty under certain conditions, including premeditated murder during a rape.

Monday’s indictment is the first indication that authorities believe Nabra Hassanen was raped.

Police say Martinez-Torres encountered Hassanen among a group of teenagers as they walked a mosque in June for a service. Authorities say Martinez-Torres got into a confrontation with some of the teens, and chased them. Police say Martinez-Torres caught Hassanen and bludgeoned her with a bat. A search warrant says Martinez-Torres dumped her body in a lake.

The post Man indicted on murder, rape charges in Muslim teen’s killing appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2gfgKBZ

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

Man charged with abduction after forcing Va. teen into car, triggering Amber Alert

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

WASHINGTON — A man who police say kidnapped a 16-year-old from a party in Woodbridge on Sunday now faces multiple charges related to the incident, which triggered an Amber Alert.

Roberto A. Medrano-Segovia, 21, of no given address, was arrested Sunday on charges of abduction, gang participation, destruction of property and providing a false name to law enforcement.

He was being held without bond and was expected to appear in court on Nov. 7, Prince William County police said.

Police said that Medrano-Segovia forced the girl into a car outside the party early Sunday morning. The two had argued earlier in the evening and others at the party had to separate the pair.

According to police, Medrano-Segovia threatened others at the party with a knife and claimed to be a member of the MS-13 street gang. He left, but later returned and slashed the tires of a car that belonged to someone who had intervened on behalf of the girl.

Police found the two together about a mile away from the location of the party at another home in Woodbridge. About 12 hours had passed since the girl was reported missing. The girl was unharmed and returned to her family, police said.

The post Man charged with abduction after forcing Va. teen into car, triggering Amber Alert appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2hK16i7

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

Officer shoots man while serving emergency custody order

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

ROCKY MOUNT, Va. (AP) — A Virginia police officer shot and wounded a man while serving an emergency custody order.

State police say a Rocky Mount officer found the man at a shopping plaza after a magistrate issued the order. They said as the officer approached, the man assaulted the officer. The fight ended when the officer shot and wounded the man.

Police said the man was taken to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital for treatment of a non-life threatening injury after the shooting late Saturday night.

The officer also was treated for injuries in the assault and was released for the same hospital. Police said the officer has been placed on paid administrative leave while Virginia State Police investigate the shooting.

Neither the man nor the officer was identified by state police.

The post Officer shoots man while serving emergency custody order appeared first on WTOP.

from http://ift.tt/2wZtFia

Digital Marketing Agency in Northern Virginia

“No More Hoodies” Why We Need to Attract More Women to Cyber

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

Fortalice Solutions President and CEO and Dark Cubed Co-Founder Theresa Payton sheds light on the gender gap in cybersecurity and discusses ways to engage more women in cyber careers. Fortalice Solutions Chief Information Security Officer Ken Bailey will be speaking on the The Life of a Hack: A Business Survival Guide panel at the second annual Capital Cybersecurity Summit on Nov. 14-15, 2017 in Tysons Corner.


Fortalice logo blueWhat image flashes in your mind when you hear the word “cybersecurity?” Is it a room filled with happy, diverse, productive people making a difference in the world around them? Sadly no. More than likely, it’s a guy hunched over his computer wearing a dark hoodie with some ones and zeros floating above his head. Or maybe it’s a cold room in a basement filled with rows and rows of computer servers. If you’re a woman looking at the next 30-40 years of your life, would you pick a career that looks so ominous? Probably not.

Optics is one of the biggest hurdles we face as cybersecurity professionals and the hurdle is even greater for women in security. Generally speaking, women are more drawn to careers where they can use their intellectual, emotional and interpersonal skills and cybersecurity does a terrible job promoting itself in those areas. What if I told you that cyber can be an extremely emotionally charged field? Yes, it’s logical and yes, it’s technical – but the beauty is that we use those skills in conjunction with softer skills to truly help people.

In my daily life as CEO of Fortalice Solutions, I work directly with the government, corporations and people to protect what’s most important to them, including intellectual property, financial assets and healthcare information. And perhaps the most rewarding of all, I work frequently with law enforcement to use innovative technology to combat human trafficking and childhood sexual exploitation. We need to demystify cybersecurity and talk plainly about how our field helps people, in real tangible ways.

For example, I’ve often said that security is inherently flawed because it is not designed for the human psyche. Today security is not only an afterthought, security designs have zero empathy for the human. Do you know any non-technical professionals that profess a deep fondness for strong passwords? You don’t. Passwords are designed for the technology and we ask the human to conform. According to cybersecurity best practices, people will share and forget passwords and they will do unsafe things to get their jobs done, such as use free, unsecure Wi-Fi. Haven’t you? Women’s natural intuition and emotional intelligence to see themselves in someone else’s shoes is exactly what we need to combat this problem!

In order to be more inclusive of women in cybersecurity, at least three things need to happen.

First, hiring managers need to expand their criteria and qualifications. Many hiring managers are leaving women and minority candidates on the sidelines by chasing the same resumes, the same degrees and the same alphabet soup of certifications in future employees. While this might be one indicator of a successful hire it is not the only indicator. The best cybersecurity professionals are insatiable learners and highly skilled problem solvers who think about the user while never underestimating the adversary. Take a chance on a different degree and background and invest in cross training. Some of my best cybersecurity team members started out in a different field and are now some of the best, most well rounded cybersecurity professionals we have on the front lines of fighting cybercrime.

Second, an April 2013 survey of Women in Technology, found that 45% of respondents noted a “lack of female role models or [the encouragement to pursue a degree in a technology-related field].” It’s been proven that professional mentorship and development dramatically increase participation in any given field, so the lack of women in cybersecurity is really a compounding problem – we don’t have enough women in cyber because there aren’t enough women role models in cyber. While connecting with other women has had its challenges, there are wonderful women in cyber today… look at KT McFarland, Deputy National Security Advisor and Ambassador to Singapore, and Keren Elazari, a global speaker on cybersecurity and ethical hacker out of Israel. They are rock stars.

I’ve been very lucky to work with wonderful, inspiring women in cyber, but I recognize that my exposure might be more than women starting their career. This brings me to my third point: I recommend all cyber practitioners, and especially women, take advantage of all the amazing free tools out there from RSA, TED talks, and even YouTube. You can watch speeches from veteran cybersecurity professionals about their careers, hear their advice on how to succeed, and learn new skills to keep you competitive in the workplace. Consider free online courses in cybersecurity or popular programming languages like Python. Ask your colleagues to show you their favorite geek gadget or ethical hack. There are some excellent security frameworks and guidance available for free online such as the NIST framework, CIS Critical Security Controls, SSÅE 16, and discussions on GDPR. Leverage social media to hear what’s on the minds of security experts. In this field, be a constant student of your profession.

It’s true there is a shortage of women in cybersecurity but there is not a lack of talented and strong women in this world. Cybersecurity requires a general shakeup and perhaps women are the ones to do it. I’m grateful that I can talk about my industry and I hope more women join this exciting field… and they can even wear their favorite hoodie.

Share and Enjoy


FacebookTwitterDeliciousLinkedInStumbleUponAdd to favoritesEmailRSS

from http://ift.tt/2yMDPHw

Northern Virginia Digital Marketing Agency

“No More Hoodies” Why We Need to Attract More Women to Cyber

Grow Your Business in Northern Virginia with digital marketing services from The W Agency

Fortalice Solutions President and CEO and Dark Cubed Co-Founder Theresa Payton sheds light on the gender gap in cybersecurity and discusses ways to engage more women in cyber careers. Fortalice Solutions Chief Information Security Officer Ken Bailey will be speaking on the The Life of a Hack: A Business Survival Guide panel at the second annual Capital Cybersecurity Summit on Nov. 14-15, 2017 in Tysons Corner.


Fortalice logo blueWhat image flashes in your mind when you hear the word “cybersecurity?” Is it a room filled with happy, diverse, productive people making a difference in the world around them? Sadly no. More than likely, it’s a guy hunched over his computer wearing a dark hoodie with some ones and zeros floating above his head. Or maybe it’s a cold room in a basement filled with rows and rows of computer servers. If you’re a woman looking at the next 30-40 years of your life, would you pick a career that looks so ominous? Probably not.

Optics is one of the biggest hurdles we face as cybersecurity professionals and the hurdle is even greater for women in security. Generally speaking, women are more drawn to careers where they can use their intellectual, emotional and interpersonal skills and cybersecurity does a terrible job promoting itself in those areas. What if I told you that cyber can be an extremely emotionally charged field? Yes, it’s logical and yes, it’s technical – but the beauty is that we use those skills in conjunction with softer skills to truly help people.

In my daily life as CEO of Fortalice Solutions, I work directly with the government, corporations and people to protect what’s most important to them, including intellectual property, financial assets and healthcare information. And perhaps the most rewarding of all, I work frequently with law enforcement to use innovative technology to combat human trafficking and childhood sexual exploitation. We need to demystify cybersecurity and talk plainly about how our field helps people, in real tangible ways.

For example, I’ve often said that security is inherently flawed because it is not designed for the human psyche. Today security is not only an afterthought, security designs have zero empathy for the human. Do you know any non-technical professionals that profess a deep fondness for strong passwords? You don’t. Passwords are designed for the technology and we ask the human to conform. According to cybersecurity best practices, people will share and forget passwords and they will do unsafe things to get their jobs done, such as use free, unsecure Wi-Fi. Haven’t you? Women’s natural intuition and emotional intelligence to see themselves in someone else’s shoes is exactly what we need to combat this problem!

In order to be more inclusive of women in cybersecurity, at least three things need to happen.

First, hiring managers need to expand their criteria and qualifications. Many hiring managers are leaving women and minority candidates on the sidelines by chasing the same resumes, the same degrees and the same alphabet soup of certifications in future employees. While this might be one indicator of a successful hire it is not the only indicator. The best cybersecurity professionals are insatiable learners and highly skilled problem solvers who think about the user while never underestimating the adversary. Take a chance on a different degree and background and invest in cross training. Some of my best cybersecurity team members started out in a different field and are now some of the best, most well rounded cybersecurity professionals we have on the front lines of fighting cybercrime.

Second, an April 2013 survey of Women in Technology, found that 45% of respondents noted a “lack of female role models or [the encouragement to pursue a degree in a technology-related field].” It’s been proven that professional mentorship and development dramatically increase participation in any given field, so the lack of women in cybersecurity is really a compounding problem – we don’t have enough women in cyber because there aren’t enough women role models in cyber. While connecting with other women has had its challenges, there are wonderful women in cyber today… look at KT McFarland, Deputy National Security Advisor and Ambassador to Singapore, and Keren Elazari, a global speaker on cybersecurity and ethical hacker out of Israel. They are rock stars.

I’ve been very lucky to work with wonderful, inspiring women in cyber, but I recognize that my exposure might be more than women starting their career. This brings me to my third point: I recommend all cyber practitioners, and especially women, take advantage of all the amazing free tools out there from RSA, TED talks, and even YouTube. You can watch speeches from veteran cybersecurity professionals about their careers, hear their advice on how to succeed, and learn new skills to keep you competitive in the workplace. Consider free online courses in cybersecurity or popular programming languages like Python. Ask your colleagues to show you their favorite geek gadget or ethical hack. There are some excellent security frameworks and guidance available for free online such as the NIST framework, CIS Critical Security Controls, SSÅE 16, and discussions on GDPR. Leverage social media to hear what’s on the minds of security experts. In this field, be a constant student of your profession.

It’s true there is a shortage of women in cybersecurity but there is not a lack of talented and strong women in this world. Cybersecurity requires a general shakeup and perhaps women are the ones to do it. I’m grateful that I can talk about my industry and I hope more women join this exciting field… and they can even wear their favorite hoodie.

Share and Enjoy


FacebookTwitterDeliciousLinkedInStumbleUponAdd to favoritesEmailRSS

from http://ift.tt/2yMDPHw

Northern Virginia Digital Marketing Agency