The evening and morning commutes will likely improve for drivers whose rides include Route 7 in Loudoun County, Virginia.
After years of complaints, and recent fast-tracking by local politicians and the Virginia Department of Transportation, a perpetual sticking point has been removed — the four-way stop light on Route 7 at Lexington Drive in Ashburn.
“The light on Route 7 is the thing we have received the most email about, as far as a road — more than Route 15, more than Northstar [Boulevard], more than Waxpool [Road] — the question has been, when can that light come off of Route 7,” said Loudoun County Board of Supervisors Chair Phyllis Randall.
In July, after receiving permission from VDOT, Loudoun County has blocked access to underutilized Lexington Drive from busy Route 7. For years, red lights at the intersection stopped traffic on Route 7 during rush hours resulting in sluggish congestion, with vehicles not only having to stop but taking time to get back up to speed.
Last month, Broad Run Supervisor Ron Meyer told WTOP the light would be decommissioned Oct. 7.
“Today, we opened up Route 7, took the light at Lexington down, which means all the way from Leesburg to Sterling, Route 7 does not have any lights,” said Randall. “It makes for a much smoother commute.”
For the past few weeks, electronic message boards and detour signage alerted drivers to the upcoming changes.
With access to Lexington Drive now closed off, the nearest exits for drivers on Route 7 are Loudoun County Parkway and Ashburn Village Boulevard.
The county is in the midst of a construction project to connect Lexington Drive traffic with Riverside Parkway, steering clear of Route 7.