Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Virginia Transportation Plan public hearing wrap-up

Fionnuala Quinn testifies before CTB
Approximately 16 citizens testified last night at the public hearing on transportation projects in Virginia. Only 3 of 17 members of the Commonwealth Transportation Board were present, Thelma Drake, Director of the Department of Rail and Public Transportation, Douglas Koelemay the Northern Virginia District rep and Gary Garczynski the At-Large Urban rep.

More than half of the speakers wanted better bicycle, pedestrian, and transit solutions. Roger Deitrick and David Dixon of the Sierra Club testified as did Fionnuala Quinn and myself from FABB, Pat Turner of BikeLoudoun, and Jenifer Madden of the Tysons Metrorail Station Access Management team. Chairman Bulova, Supervisor McKay and several other speakers stressed the need to fund Tysons access projects, including those in the Tysons Bicycle Master Plan.

Folks from the car lobby once again advocated for the sprawl-inducing outer beltway. With our current system badly in need of maintenance funds they and their developer supporters want to build a new north south highway to feed new development in Loudoun County. Carol Welty of the Washington Airports Task Force even advocated for a 6-8 lane freeway circling Dulles airport. Bob Chase of Northern Virginia Transportation Alliance has been the biggest booster of the outer beltway, including a new crossing of the Potomac into Montgomery Co.

See our complete testimony on the Six-Year Improvement Program.

See also Greater Greater Washington's excellent summary of the CTB's reversal of having connected neighborhood streets that was the subject several speaker's comments last night: Virginia turns back toward the 1950s by weakening road connection standards, neglecting populated areas.

Update: See coverage of the meeting in Vienna Patch: NOVA Weighs In On Allocation of VDOT Transportation Funds.

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