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News Bits and Pieces -
May 27, 2004
The advisory panel reviewing a private-sector proposal to build HOT (high occupancy toll) lanes on the Capital Beltway in Northern Virginia recommended to Commonwealth Transportation Commissioner Philip Shucet that he enter into negotiations with Fluor Daniel for a comprehensive agreement.
The panel’s recommendation and its supporting documents will go to Shucet for his review. Shucet will determine whether or not to accept, reject or modify the recommendation. He also will decide whether or not to enter into negotiations for a comprehensive agreement.
“The panel has reached its recommendation following a diligent and objective review of the proposal and all other relevant documents and studies,” said Pierce Homer, who is the deputy secretary of transportation and chairs the advisory panel. “Before making its recommendation, the panel also took into serious consideration the public comments received from citizens and local governments.”
Fluor Daniel submitted its proposal under the Public-Private Transportation Act (PPTA), which allows Virginia to partner with the private sector to build projects more efficiently.
Fluor Daniel proposes to build two HOT lanes in each direction on a 14-mile segment of the Capital Beltway, from north of the Springfield Interchange to north of the Dulles Toll Road. According to the proposal, HOT lanes would be free to carpoolers, buses and emergency vehicles; cars carrying only one or two people would pay a variable toll to use the lanes. Large trucks would not be allowed to use HOT lanes.
No improvements can be made to the beltway unless they are part of a federally approved environmental impact study. An independent review of possible improvements to the Capital Beltway is under way. Public comments on the revised environmental impact study will be accepted beginning next month.
I-495 Advisory Panel:Pierce Homer, Chair and Deputy Secretary of Transportation; Julia Connally, member of the Commonwealth Transportation Board; Kenneth Klinge, member of the Commonwealth Transportation Board; Gerald McCarthy, member of the Commonwealth Transportation Board; Leonard “Hobie” Mitchel, member of the Commonwealth Transportation Board; Malcolm Kerley, P.E., VDOT Chief Engineer of Program Development; Barbara Reese, VDOT Chief Financial Officer; Tom Farley, VDOT Northern Virginia District Administrator; Dr. Lester Hoel, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Virginia; Ron Kirby, Director, National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board; Young Ho Chang, Director, Fairfax County Department of Transportation; and Charles Badger, Assistant Director, Department of Rail and Public Transportation.
For more information on the I-495 HOT lane proposal and the PPTA process, go to VDOT’s Website.
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