Autumn on Lake Thoreau

Autumn on Lake Thoreau

Friday, December 28, 2012

Outer Beltway: Plans for Loudoun-Prince William highway move forward; crossing to Md. under discussion, Washington Post, December 28, 2012

By Tom Jackman, The State of NoVa Blog
A state map of the planned 45-mile highway from Route 7 in Ashburn, past the west side of Dulles Airport, down to Dumfries and I-95 in Prince William County. (Virginia Department of Transportation - Office of Intermodal Planning and Investment)
The major North-South highway that is being planned for Loudoun and Prince William counties got a public rollout of sorts last week. “Open houses” were held at Stone Bridge High School in Ashburn and the Four Points Sheraton in Manassas. There were no formal presentations for this new “Northern Virginia North-South Corridor,” just a series of informational boards that showed roughly where the limited-access highway would go and why local and state officials think it’s needed.  . . .
The main stated goals of this highway are to increase the freight tonnage going in and out of Dulles International Airport (it would run just west of the airport) to further juice up the region’s economy. It would also improve traffic between Loudoun and Prince William as they continue to grow. Many who drive congested Route 28 or two-lane Route 15 to head north or south at peak hours would welcome an alternative.
Environmental and smart-growth groups say that east-west traffic and mass transit are what need money and attention, and that a new north-south road without mass transit just creates more sprawl and more traffic. . . .
Meanwhile, the project continues to have the feel of a done deal. The local governments in Loudoun and Prince William are on board, as is the National Park Service (the highway will stream along the western edge of the Manassas battlefield). Developers are ready to turn long-vacant properties in Loudoun and Prince William into new residential and commercial hives. . . .
Click here to read the full article including reaction by smart growth advocates.  

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