During its June 21, 2022, meeting, the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors approved short-term, mid-term and long-term recommendations—except those projects adjacent to the Town of Hillsboro—to improve safety and operations along Route 9 between the West Virginia state line and Route 7.
Route 9 is in a primarily rural area and travels through the Town of Hillsboro. The approved road improvements are not currently funded; however, each improvement has the potential to be included in a future capital budget.
The Board had also planned for additional safety and operational studies. The scope of the previously approved study area for the Route 7 study was shortened. Next, Loudoun County will conduct the Route 7 (from Route 690 to the Clarke County line) and Route 50 Safety and Operational Studies.
Through the study of the corridor, improvement alternatives were evaluated through screening tools, analysis software and public input. The Board determined the preferred alternative following partner agency meetings and public participation that included an online survey to solicit feedback. The survey results showed members of the public preferred the approved recommendations, which are listed below, as well as implementing a shared-use path and shoulders along the corridor.
Short-term recommendations include installing warning signs, flashing beacons, sight distance vegetation clearing, chevrons, rumble strips, yield markings and improved signage at five locations including:
- Clarkes Gap Road
- Curve East of Sagle Road
- Hamilton Station Road
- Harpers Ferry Road
- Sweet Springs Country Store
Mid-term recommendations include improving turn lanes at Sweet Springs Country Store, Cider Mill Road and Purcellville Road and adding law enforcement pull-off areas along the corridor.
Long-term recommendations at ten locations along the corridor include roundabouts at multiple intersections. The Board prioritized these improvements as follows:
- Roundabouts at Harpers Ferry Road, Cider Mill Road and Clarkes Gap Road.
- Lane continuity on a road segment from Clarkes Gap Road to Simpson Circle South and right-in/right-out/left-in turn lanes at Beacon Hill Road.
- Roundabout at Hamilton Station Road and eastbound left turn lane at Old Wheatland Road.
Currently, Route 9 is a two-lane road with turn lanes at some, though not all, major intersections. The study’s initial task was to obtain field data, which was collected in May 2019. The data included traffic volumes, speeds, operational data, and engineering observations. The study included extensive public involvement and a focus group comprised of representatives from businesses, homeowner associations, community organizations and some private homeowners.
During its June 2017 Transportation Summit, the Board of Supervisors initiated the study to identify safety and traffic operational issues and present recommended solutions for consideration. The county worked with the public to ensure any proposed improvements along Route 9 will continue to carry local and commuter traffic safely and efficiently while preserving the unique context of the historical roadway.
For more information about the Route 9 Safety and Operational Study, visit loudoun.gov/route9.
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