VDOT poised to get additional federal funding for projects

News Virginia DOT September 16, 2005
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The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) has successfully met the deadline to provide the Federal Highway Administration with information needed to obligate all available federal funds to projects three weeks ahead of schedule. With more than $643 million ready to be obligated to projects, VDOT is prepared to commit an additional $86 million in federal funds before September 30th.

"This means that VDOT is in a position to receive more money for much needed transportation projects," said acting VDOT Commissioner Gregory A. Whirley. "Working with all regions of the state, VDOT has focused this year on getting our federal records in order, which has allowed us to ask for significantly increased federal funding."

Whirley announced the news before the Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) meeting recently. The CTB adopted a resolution authorizing the Secretary of Transportation to take all actions necessary to commit the additional federal funds to specific projects.

The Federal Highway Administration said it will notify states during the last week of September on whether they will receive any additional federal funding.

Virginia's $86 million in specific funding requests include:

• $15.1 million for the widening of Lee Highway in Fairfax County—if funded, construction funding would be advanced a year;

• $14.6 million for Lynchburg-Madison Heights projects that had insufficient funds budgeted to them;

• $5.8 million for the Pinner's Point project in Portsmouth, relieving a portion of the city's funding committed to the project;

• $1.2 million for feasibility of alignment adjustments for the Coalfields Connector in Southwest Virginia;

• $30.9 million for I-66 in Prince William County to keep the project on track;

• $10.6 million for purchasing additional right of way around Hampton Blvd., which will also support the Intermodal Connector and the Third Crossing in the Hampton Roads region;

• $6.9 million for spot improvements resulting from Idea-66 in Northern Virginia; and

• $1.1 million for signals in the Fredericksburg area.

In the last two years, Virginia received an average of $17.5 million in additional federal funds. In the seven years prior to that, Virginia received an average of $5.3 million.

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