NPS will begin construction to rebuild Bridge 12 starting on Monday. Bridge 12 is just north of Fort Hunt. It’s the bridge that is located in a ravine with steep hills and curves on either approach to the bridge. The new bridge will have a straight alignment and will also avoid any elevation change while meeting modern design standards. NPS will also replace the bumpy asphalt on either side of the bridge. Trail users will be detoured on to a lane on the Parkway and will be separated from cars by a concrete barrier. See the picture below for an outline of the detour, the current trail alignment and the new trail alignment.
The full press release is below:
McLean, Va. — On February 14, the National Park Service (NPS), in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration and Virginia Department of Transportation, will begin a project to replace Bridge 12 and realign the Mount Vernon Trail to improve safety near Fort Hunt Park. During the project, trail users will be detoured around the construction area on a temporary trail.
The NPS will straighten trail curves that lead to Bridge 12, located approximately 400 yards north of Fort Hunt Park. The bridge will be relocated, allowing for a straighter alignment and a reduced grade leading to and from the bridge. The NPS will also upgrade the bridge railings and replace more than 350 tons of asphalt on the trail. Realigning the trail, replacing the bridge and laying new trail asphalt will reduce the severity and frequency of bike crashes on this section of trail.
“The Mount Vernon Trail is a popular recreational resource and serves as an important regional transportation connection hosting over one million users annually,” Charles Cuvelier, Superintendent of the George Washington Memorial Parkway, said. “This project will improve trail conditions and increase safety for all visitors.”
During this project— which is expected to be completed in late summer— trail users will be detoured on the adjacent southbound section of the George Washington Memorial Parkway near Waynewood Boulevard. To protect trial users on the detour, concrete barriers will be placed on the roadway and drivers will be guided into one lane. Trail users and drivers should expect temporary, short-term closures and should follow trail signs and directions from onsite flaggers.
Mount Vernon Trail is an 18-mile paved multi-use trail stretching from George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate to Theodore Roosevelt Island. The trail is a hub for recreational activity and connects with regional trails including the Potomac Heritage, Custis, Rock Creek, Four Mile Run, and Woodrow Wilson Bridge trails.