On March 16, 2011, the Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) is scheduled to determine whether to designate the Bi-County and Tri-County Parkways as Corridors of Statewide Significance (CoSS).
A major factor in Northern Virginia becoming the nation's most traffic-congested region is the failure to build many parkways, particularly north-south, planned decades ago to support today's land use patterns and traffic demands. In many cases local governments took planned facilities off their maps.
In 2009 the Virginia House and Senate by unanimous vote authorized the CTB to designate corridors of statewide significance and initiate necessary studies to help advance them as public-private sector partnerships or conventional projects. To date the CTB has awarded such designation only to existing corridors such as I-66 and I-95.
The Bi-County and Tri-County Parkways represent badly needed north-south links to Washington Dulles International Airport and Northern Virginia employment centers.
Forces with a history of opposing the 2002 Bond Referendum, the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge, new Potomac River Crossings, I-66 improvements, Governor McDonnell's bond package and virtually every other regional improvement of significance are railing against this designation.
To register your support for CoSS designation for the Bi-County and Tri-County Parkways, use the document below to send a letter on your letterhead to Secretary Connaughton. THANK YOU!
The Honorable Sean T. Connaughton, Chairman
Commonwealth Transportation Board
1111 East Broad Street, Room
Dear Secretary Connaughton:
The undersigned (or individual organization) request that the Commonwealth Transportation Board designate the Bi-County and Tri-County Parkways as Corridors of Statewide Significance and to initiate the necessary studies and actions to protect required rights of way and ultimately construct both facilities.
The need for additional north-south multi-modal capacity and the benefits of both Parkways have been well-documented by the Commonwealth’s 2005 Tri-County Parkway Location Study and other analysis. Both parkways appear on local comprehensive land use and transportation plans.
Northern Virginia is the nation’s most congested region in large part due to the failure to complete a previously planned transportation grid. Most planned radial connections to our metropolitan region’s core have been completed; many essential north south links have not. The result, as recently confirmed by a national study, is that our radial corridors are overwhelmed by traffic for lack of alternatives.
Washington Dulles International Airport is widely acknowledged to be a major economic engine for the Commonwealth and, in particular, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William Counties. However, the Airport’s ability to fulfill its potential is heavily dependent upon improved accessibility for passengers, freight and workers from the north and south. The Bi-County and Tri-County Parkways are key missing links.
Job creation and sustained regional prosperity are heavily dependent upon a mobile and accessible work force. Loudoun and Prince William Counties are among Virginia’s fastest growing communities. The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments projects that much of the region’s future population and job growth will occur in or adjacent to these counties. Attracting and keeping cutting edge employers requires improved north-south connectivity.
Such facilities also will help move people out of harm’s way in the event of homeland security emergency
In short, Corridor of Statewide Significance designation for the Bi-County and Tri-County Parkway is essential to improved regional mobility, quality of life, long-term prosperity and security. The (name) respectfully requests the Commonwealth Transportation Board to award such designation at its March 16, 2011 meeting.