COMMUTE

Dulles Metrorail expansion: Vienna business owner wants WMAA project off his property

Comment
Decrease Increase Text size

When construction first began on a Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority expansion to the Dulles Corridor in Vienna, Va., officials told business owners it may affect their driveway by only a few feet.

Three years later, one business owner said the construction is easily 20 feet on his property and is costing him hundreds of thousands of dollars in business.

John Kenney, owner of the MVC Couples Boutique, said a 33-foot driveway is at the heart of a heated dispute between him and officials behind the Dulles Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority project.

"For three years now, we've dealt with Metro just bullying us around and taking advantage of our parking lot," Kenney said.

Kenney alleges his business is taking a serious hit because of construction crews blocking nearly half of the drive to his doorstep, a portion of pavement he said is "private." Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority officials disagree.

"There's shared access to this property," said Marcia McAllister of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. "It is our understanding and we have the documents to show that this is Commonwealth of Virginia property, and that we have access to it, and of course they have access to it."

When concrete jersey walls went up one Friday, business took a nosedive, according to store manager Jake Berry.

"Because of the blockage, the customers think that we are closed, so they just go to another store or they just go home," Berry said.

Since the walls went up, employees have called police to try and have the crews removed for trespassing, but those efforts were fruitless.

Kenney said he has a court order from 1981 stating the driveway is private, but Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority say they have a right to use it while construction is underway. Both sides say they plan to let their lawyers handle it.

Would you like to contribute to this story? Join the discussion.

Recommended For You
comments powered by Disqus