Open Space Summer 2023 Updates
If you’ve read the Committee’s meeting minutes, you’ve no doubt seen the trails referred to by the letter “T” followed by a number. I wish I could say the trail numbering scheme follows a pattern of some kind, but, unfortunately, it doesn’t. But help is available.
You can download a map of the trail system here on https://www.crosspointeva.org. I suggest saving a copy of this file on your cell phone for reference when you are hiking the trails. (Note: you do not have to log into the Crosspointe web site to download the map, although it is a good idea to request an account for the website if you don’t already have one.)
The Trail Map shows not only the trails and their numbers, but all the homeowner lots and open space in Crosspointe. Also shown on the map is the surface type of various sections of trail. Different colors indicate trail sections covered by asphalt and stone (paved), dirt, and grass. In addition, amenities like tot lots, multi-use courts, and tennis courts appear on the map.
As you can see from the Trail Map, there are sections of the trail system that are not owned by Crosspointe. For example, the asphalt trails running along Silverbrook, Bayberry Ridge, and Hooes Road are maintained by the county. While not indicated on the map, that portion of the T24 trail located behind Halley Elementary School is owned by Fairfax County Public Schools (the school property extends all the way to Giles Run).
One of the Open Space Committee’s most important responsibilities is maintaining our trail system. Most of the trail maintenance work falls into three categories: clearing trees that have fallen across a trail, trail resurfacing, and drainage issues.
If you should come across a fallen tree blocking a trail (or one threatening to fall across a trail), call the Community Management Office at (703) 690-2321. The Office will have the tree contractor deal with the situation. Please do call even if you think the tree is affecting a county-owned portion of trail. The Office will sort it out and inform the county, if necessary, of the issue.
Trail resurfacing involves replacing or replenishing the surface materials used to cover the trails. Asphalt trails are not permanent, especially in the more heavily wooded areas where tree roots grow under the trail, causing potential tripping hazards. Overtime, even without tree damage, asphalt weathers and requires replacement.
The Committee is currently working with the Board of Trustees to secure contractor resources to resurface several sections of the T24 trail. Two sections are along the North Side of Heron Pond and two other sections between Gauge Drive and where T24 intersects T22. All these sections have been significantly damaged by tree roots growing under the trail.
The stone-covered trails seem to hold up well, but there are some issues. For example, the stone trail behind the Oak Chase Pool has developed some deep ruts and we are working on a solution for fixing this issue. In the meantime, Bikers using this trail should dismount to avoid riding their bike into a rut.
Regarding drainage issues, the Committee is also working to address a couple of long-standing issues affecting the T22 trail. One issue is caused by drainage pipes built under the trail that aren’t large enough to handle the runoff after a storm. The trail acts as a dam, causing minor flooding in a large portion of open space that has also affected some homeowner lots. Another issue further down T22 caused by storm runoff is undermining the trail, causing it to collapse.
The Committee has been contacted by several homeowners having problems with runoff from open space onto their property. Sometimes we can alleviate the problem by notifying the county and having them perform some maintenance on the storm water infrastructure. However, aside from those situations, there’s only so much the Committee can do.
In situations where runoff is flowing (usually during or after a storm) from open space onto homeowner property, the best strategy is to assist the runoff in flowing across the property. Consider installing dry stream beds to help convey the runoff from your property. Coordinate with your neighbor if the runoff coming off your property will affect theirs. The runoff should ultimately be directed into the neigh borhood stormwater management system.
Regarding the storm water management system, it consists of a collection of storm drains (in yards and on the streets), storm water ponds, and armored streams (using stone “riprap”) threading through the neighborhood. Heron and Giles Run ponds are integral components of the storm water management system. Ultimately, all runoff from Crosspointe flows into Giles Run or South Run and on to the Potomac River.
While Fairfax County is mostly responsible for maintaining the storm water management system, you can either call the Management Office or the County to report issues. If you would like to learn more about the storm water management system or to report a problem, checkout the Fairfax County Storm Water Management website at fairfaxcounty.gov/publicworks/stormwater.
You can contact the OSC by sending an email to email@example.com