March 23, 2020

Dear Neighbor,

Today, Governor Northam announced that all schools in the Commonwealth of Virginia will be closed for the remainder of the school year due to the coronavirus pandemic. Restaurants can remain open for carryout and delivery service only, entertainment and personal care businesses must close, and other non-essential businesses can remain open only if they can adhere to ten or fewer patrons and social distancing. Grocery stores, pharmacies, and other essential businesses will remain open and be required to adopt new social distancing and cleaning standards.

These new measures will change our lives significantly, but are necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19. For the foreseeable future, all of us will have to adapt to a new normal.

Fairfax County's government and our non-profit partners are working hard to protect the most vulnerable during this crisis -- increasing food distribution across the community, helping families access emergency financial support, and delivering food and medicine to our elderly neighbors. It's more important than ever that we come together as a community to support each other.

The Braddock District Office is now closed to in-person visitors. We will, of course, continue working on your behalf and responding to your needs. Please email or call 703-425-9300 if you need assistance. Our team will be checking the messages regularly and responding with the information you need.

Read below for updates on tomorrow's Board of Supervisors meeting, Park Authority facility closures, Fairfax Connector bus fare suspension, Metro service changes, VRE service changes, the 2020 Census, Coronavirus testing, and food distribution.

Yours in service,

Supervisor James Walkinshaw
Board Meeting Tomorrow

The Board of Supervisors will meet at 3:30 pm tomorrow, March 24 with an altered agenda. There will be no presentations or Board Matters and we will follow social distancing guidelines. The Board will consider an ordinance to adopt a written policy governing participation by electronic communication of Board Members. All public hearings will be postponed except for those that require immediate attention. Those two are:

  • Public Hearing to Consider an Ordinance to Amend and Readopt Fairfax County Code Section 7-2-13 and Relocate the Polling Places for the Lorton Precinct in the Mount Vernon District and the Nottoway Precinct in the Providence District
  • Public Hearing on the Draft Consolidated Plan One-Year Action Plan for FY 2021 

Should you wish to testify on those two items, your options are:

  • Submit written testimony via email, fax, or mail
  • Provide in-person testimony in Conference Room 6 in an appropriate, socially-distanced environment, which will be streamed to Conference Room 11
  • Submit a maximum 3-minute video testimony via email
  • All written and video testimony should be sent

You can watch online  here  or on Channel 16 (Verizon/Comcast) and Channel 1016 (Cox).
Park Authority Update

Effectively immediately, all Fairfax County Park Authority playgrounds, skate parks and restrooms will be closed until further notice. Portable restrooms will be placed near all bathrooms. Signs will be posted at all affected locations. Park visitors are asked to adhere to all closure notices and current social distancing recommendations. Health officials recommend refraining from playing on all playground equipment at this time, including community/neighborhood playgrounds.

As previously announced, all Park Authority indoor facilities remain closed, including RECenters, nature centers, visitor centers, golf courses, historic sites, portions of Frying Pan Farm Park, and permitted use of athletic fields and picnic shelters. All Park Authority programs and events through April 14 have also been canceled.

Open-air parks and trails remain open, but we ask visitors to adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Do not engage in activities that require physical or shared contact.
  • Avoid congregating in groups.
  • Maintain a 6-foot distance between others.
  • Avoid touching shared surfaces and equipment.
  • Take trash with you.
  • Do not park illegally.
  • Wash hands frequently.

Connector Bus Suspends Fare Collection
Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT)  announces that beginning Tuesday, March 24, 2020,  Fairfax Connector  customers will be required to enter and exit the bus using the rear doors. This does not apply to customer­­s who need to use a wheelchair ramp. Fare collection on buses will also be temporarily suspended due to the location of fareboxes and SmarTrip equipment at the front entrance of buses. 

FCDOT officials stress that these changes are being made to protect to the health and safety of Fairfax Connector employees, customers and the public as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affected all aspects of travel in the National Capital Region. Fairfax Connector service continues to be available to serve Fairfax County residents who have no alternate way to travel during this emergency.

Fairfax Connector passengers are reminded that the most effective way to prevent the spread of flu-like illnesses is to follow the below recommendations from public health officials:

  • If you are not feeling well or have symptoms of illness, please stay home and avoid taking public transportation. Fairfax County health officials offer steps to take at
  • Practice social distancing while on the bus by staying 6 feet away from others, if anyway possible.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your mouth/nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

Currently, the Fairfax Connector operations contractor is continuing the following steps to maintain a safe and healthy environment for Fairfax Connector passengers and personnel:

  • Reviewed and updated cleaning protocols, based on guidance from public health officials.
  • Increased vehicle cleaning cycles with a special focus on bus interiors and critical touchpoints such as door handles, handrails and other surfaces. These cleanings will incorporate disinfection procedures indicated to be effective against COVID-19.
  • Initiated regular communication with Fairfax Connector workforce to keep employees informed about the disease and guidance to prevent the spread of illness.

Yesterday, Metro announced expected rail and bus service levels for the week of Monday, March 23, through Friday, March 27. To protect the safety of its riders and employees, Metro is running essential service only. Unless your trip is essential and you have no other means of transportation, please do not use Metrorail or Metrobus.

Metrorail :

  • Trains will operate every 20 minutes on all lines except Red Line.
  • Red Line trains will operate every 15 minutes. 
  • Stations serviced by multiple lines will see trains arrive every 7-10 minutes. For example, Rosslyn, served by the Blue, Orange and Silver lines, will have train service to DC about every 7 minutes. 
  • Smithsonian and Arlington Cemetery stations will remain closed until further notice to keep non-essential cherry blossom travel off the rail system at this time of national emergency.

Metrobus :

  • Buses will run on a modified Sunday schedule. Supplemental trips will not operate; however, some routes that provide weekday-only service to essential federal workplaces have been added to the schedule.
  • Visit for a list of routes that are – and are not – operating this week.
  • Responding to a request from union leadership, beginning Tuesday, all Metrobus customers will enter and exit the bus using the REAR doors only, except customers who require use of a wheelchair ramp, which remains available at the front door. Metro is also temporarily suspending fare collection on Metrobus, because all farebox and SmarTrip equipment is located at the front door. Metro reserves the ability to discontinue this policy at any time.

MetroAccess :

  • All subscription trips remain canceled. Please limit all travel to only the most essential.

The next anticipated service change is expected to be the strategic closure of selected Metrorail stations and entrances to save critical cleaning supplies. Each station entrance is equipped with at least one escalator (most with multiple escalators), and unless closed, require cleaning in accordance with Metro’s pandemic response standards.
VRE Service Changes
Effective March 17, VRE is operating at a reduced "S" schedule level. Only trains marked with an S on their schedule will operate.

Click here to view the timetables.
2020 Census
Unfortunately fewer than 20% of Fairfax County households have completed their 2020 Census Questionnaire. Getting a complete count is critical to ensuring we get our fair share of federal resources and fair electoral representation.

Completing the questionnaire only takes a few minutes. While we all have other things on our minds these days, it is still important to fill out the questionnaire and be counted. You should have received a notice in the mail with an access code. That notice is not a scam. Visit and enter your access code today!
Coronavirus Testing
Do you have questions about coronavirus testing? Fairfax County is working with our community partner, Inova, to maximize health services available for our community during this situation.

Inova has contracted with commercial labs to provide increased testing to patients when they meet the testing criteria. They are also working to provide in-house testing capability in the coming weeks.

Click here to review a helpful FAQ on testing.

Food Distribution
FCPS has a number of food distribution sites across the County. A list of all FCPS sites is  here . This searchable map  includes food distribution sites, food pantries, and other related services. FCPS is also  delivering food on some bus routes .

Fairfax County's Meals on Wheels program is now delivering meals once-a-week. New clients are being accepted. Call the county's Coordinated Services Planning to apply.
  • Call: 703-222-0880, TTY 711
  • Monday-Friday, 8 am-4:30 pm

Additional Community-based resources for food assistance can be found  here .

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