The Virginia Department of Transportation has cleared another speed bump in its drive to build a bypass to Route 29 through Albemarle County.
Those who oppose the 29 bypass have made many arguments. Some think the project, which VDOT predicts will cost about $240 million is too expensive for the limited time drivers would save. Others worry about the impact on health from a six-mile road that would pass by six schools, while a third group feared trucks with hazardous cargo could pass too close to the city’s water supply.
The passage of Virginia’s transportation-funding bill was not the only change of heart that took place in the General Assembly this session. Another was tackling a growing traffic-safety hazard that did not even exist a generation ago—and making it a primary offense. It not only toughens current state penalties against texting while driving, but it targets similar communications.
The Virginia Senate has voted for a transportation-funding bill that increases the gas tax, removes most of Governor McDonnell’s proposals, and allows Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads to raise extra revenue.