Officials with the Department of Rail and Public transportation and Norfolk Southern have signed an agreement to extend Amtrak service from Lynchburg to Roanoke.
Governor McDonnell says last year’s transportation funding plan was instrumental in funding the return of intercity passenger rail service to the Star City for the first time in more than 30 years. State Department of Rail and Public Transportation Director Thelma Drake says the agreement is a big step forward
It’s been more than two years since the state vowed to build a road around Charlottesville - allowing truckers and travelers headed for DC or Danville, Lynchburg or Northern Virginia to avoid local congestion. Environmentalists have fought the plan at every turn. Now, with a new governor set to take office, opponents are hoping for a permanent road block, and for many reasons, they might get their way.
When the Virginia General Assembly approved new transportation funding this year, it also allocated 2-and-a-half billion dollars more than VDOT's previous six-year transportation improvement plan. That is allowing the agency to focus aggressively on some badly needed construction projects statewide to relieve congestion, make repairs, and build new lanes. But it will also mean some headaches for motorists traveling on some of the busiest stretches of Virginia.
State leaders say they do not have a contingency plan if the Virginia Supreme Court upholds a lower court ruling that tolls are taxes and not user fees.
A group of Hampton Roads residents won a victory earlier this year over whether or not they are being unfairly tolled to pay for construction of a second Midtown Tunnel and maintenance of other tunnels.
Those who support VDOT's position say that if residents within that region win this lawsuit, citizens throughout the entire state will lose.