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Which would you prefer?

Third Crossing
- 9 (50%)
Widen the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel
- 9 (50%)

Total Members Voted: 18


Author Topic: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project  (Read 36058 times)

sprjus4

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Re: 3rd Crossing
« Reply #75 on: January 05, 2019, 10:00:57 PM »

8 years later, 460 dead, no third crossing. We've made it a long way  :spin:
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Re: 3rd Crossing
« Reply #76 on: January 05, 2019, 10:07:30 PM »

The concept of I-64's terminus resurfaces in Hampton Roads every 6-9 months or so.

8 years later, 460 dead, no third crossing. We've made it a long way  :spin:

Thats 28-44 deaths every time I-64's terminus resurfaces. If only we can stop this artificial natural disaster...
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sprjus4

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Re: 3rd Crossing
« Reply #77 on: January 05, 2019, 10:12:26 PM »

The concept of I-64's terminus resurfaces in Hampton Roads every 6-9 months or so.

8 years later, 460 dead, no third crossing. We've made it a long way  :spin:

Thats 28-44 deaths every time I-64's terminus resurfaces. If only we can stop this artificial natural disaster...
Let's build a 500 mile toll highway across the state and call it the Virginia Turnpike. If you packaged it into something that looked attractive, that idea could bounce around for decades, get hundreds of millions spent, and go absolutely nowhere. All jokes aside, if the DOT and local officials are committed to a project (like 460 or the Third Crossing), they need to show it and get it done. 460 could've been possible and a great road, but it went every wrong direction it could.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #78 on: January 05, 2019, 10:47:06 PM »

I merged all of the Third Crossing threads into one.  They were all at different times, and of course the one that was bumped was the 2011 one despite there being a 2014 one.   -Mark
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Beltway

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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #79 on: January 05, 2019, 11:26:23 PM »

8 years later, 460 dead, no third crossing. We've made it a long way  :spin:

Thank the corrupt McAuliff administration for their lies and incompetence and demagoguery on the US-460 freeway project.  They produced a bogus SEIS that quadrupled the claimed acres of wetlands impacts as compared to the FHWA approved FEIS from just a few years prior.  They lied thru their teeth.  It would have been a fine relief route to I-64 and a direct Interstate standard connection from Richmond-Petersburg to South Hampton Roads.  It would have been opened 2016.  <vomit noises>
« Last Edit: January 05, 2019, 11:33:13 PM by Beltway »
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sprjus4

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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #80 on: January 05, 2019, 11:53:20 PM »

8 years later, 460 dead, no third crossing. We've made it a long way  :spin:

Thank the corrupt McAuliff administration for their lies and incompetence and demagoguery on the US-460 freeway project.  They produced a bogus SEIS that quadrupled the claimed acres of wetlands impacts as compared to the FHWA approved FEIS from just a few years prior.  They lied thru their teeth.  It would have been a fine relief route to I-64 and a direct Interstate standard connection from Richmond-Petersburg to South Hampton Roads.  It would have been opened 2016.  <vomit noises>
That administration was a joke. The only good thing I'd say he did for roads was raise the interstate speed limit to 70 MPH. As someone who heads north occasionally, I would be glad to pay the $5 toll to use the road each way. And it's not like it force anybody to use it - it would simply open up a new alternative to motorists looking to avoid congestion, or just already heading west on US-460. Similar to the TX-130 toll road built around Austin, Texas.

It'd be nice if it could be still done under a full private sector, however the demand is not there, and it would be environmentally shut down again. What a joke.
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Beltway

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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #81 on: January 06, 2019, 12:00:36 AM »

Thank the corrupt McAuliff administration for their lies and incompetence and demagoguery on the US-460 freeway project.  They produced a bogus SEIS that quadrupled the claimed acres of wetlands impacts as compared to the FHWA approved FEIS from just a few years prior.  They lied thru their teeth.  It would have been a fine relief route to I-64 and a direct Interstate standard connection from Richmond-Petersburg to South Hampton Roads.  It would have been opened 2016.  <vomit noises>
That administration was a joke. The only good thing I'd say he did for roads was raise the interstate speed limit to 70 MPH. As someone who heads north occasionally, I would be glad to pay the $5 toll to use the road each way. And it's not like it force anybody to use it - it would simply open up a new alternative to motorists looking to avoid congestion, or just already heading west on US-460. Similar to the TX-130 toll road built around Austin, Texas.

It was to be toll-assisted,  $3.70.  Well worth it.  It would have either relieved I-64 or forestalled traffic increases, and alleviated at least some of the need for some of the widening projects.
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sprjus4

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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #82 on: January 06, 2019, 12:06:41 AM »

Thank the corrupt McAuliff administration for their lies and incompetence and demagoguery on the US-460 freeway project.  They produced a bogus SEIS that quadrupled the claimed acres of wetlands impacts as compared to the FHWA approved FEIS from just a few years prior.  They lied thru their teeth.  It would have been a fine relief route to I-64 and a direct Interstate standard connection from Richmond-Petersburg to South Hampton Roads.  It would have been opened 2016.  <vomit noises>
That administration was a joke. The only good thing I'd say he did for roads was raise the interstate speed limit to 70 MPH. As someone who heads north occasionally, I would be glad to pay the $5 toll to use the road each way. And it's not like it force anybody to use it - it would simply open up a new alternative to motorists looking to avoid congestion, or just already heading west on US-460. Similar to the TX-130 toll road built around Austin, Texas.

It was to be toll-assisted,  $3.70.  Well worth it.  It would have either relieved I-64 or forestalled traffic increases, and alleviated at least some of the need for some of the widening projects.
Only $3.70 for 55 miles? I swear they said it was going to be higher. I'd pay that anyday, to avoid the nonsense that the HRBT, MMMBT, and James River can be during peak hours.

How much would VDOT have put into the project, how much would the private sector have put in, and out of all of it, how much would've been repaid strictly from the tolls collected?
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #83 on: January 06, 2019, 12:10:46 AM »

It was to be toll-assisted,  $3.70.  Well worth it.  It would have either relieved I-64 or forestalled traffic increases, and alleviated at least some of the need for some of the widening projects.
Only $3.70 for 55 miles? I swear they said it was going to be higher. I'd pay that anyday, to avoid the nonsense that the HRBT, MMMBT, and James River can be during peak hours.
How much would VDOT have put into the project, how much would the private sector have put in, and out of all of it, how much would've been repaid strictly from the tolls collected?

I would have to look it up, I recall about 20% of the funding was toll revenue bonds, that is what I meant by toll assisted.  They had the contract signed and ready to go, but McAuliff torpedoed it to get back at the previous governor, and over $200 million of the contracted cost was lost.  <regurgitate>
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #84 on: January 06, 2019, 07:40:17 AM »

8 years later, 460 dead, no third crossing. We've made it a long way  :spin:

Thank the corrupt McAuliff administration for their lies and incompetence and demagoguery on the US-460 freeway project.  They produced a bogus SEIS that quadrupled the claimed acres of wetlands impacts as compared to the FHWA approved FEIS from just a few years prior.  They lied thru their teeth.  It would have been a fine relief route to I-64 and a direct Interstate standard connection from Richmond-Petersburg to South Hampton Roads.  It would have been opened 2016.  <vomit noises>
That administration was a joke. The only good thing I'd say he did for roads was raise the interstate speed limit to 70 MPH. As someone who heads north occasionally, I would be glad to pay the $5 toll to use the road each way. And it's not like it force anybody to use it - it would simply open up a new alternative to motorists looking to avoid congestion, or just already heading west on US-460. Similar to the TX-130 toll road built around Austin, Texas.

It'd be nice if it could be still done under a full private sector, however the demand is not there, and it would be environmentally shut down again. What a joke.

Bob McDonnell raised the speed limit to 70 in 2010. 
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MOVED: Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #85 on: January 07, 2019, 10:40:03 AM »

No more political discussion. No name calling. No veiled references.

Beltway

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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #86 on: January 07, 2019, 02:02:34 PM »

Thanks … if something doesn't show up then I won't be tempted to reply to it!

Now that you see my analysis of the cancelation of the US-460 Freeway Project, I wonder how I should proceed?  It was inherently political, and back in 2013 when the cancelation was underway, I was a VDOT employee and I could have gotten canned if the wrong persons saw what I have posted recently about this project cancelation.  I am obviously outraged by this and the loss of this highway.

Something else that I have not seen any real discussion about regarding this project is the pavement condition of the existing US-460 highway, something would have been solved by relegating the existing highway to minor primary status with very little truck traffic, and "shunpiking" could have been prevented by repainting the rural sections of the highway with 2 traffic lanes and 2 full paved shoulders. 

The inner lanes are full depth asphalt and are the original 2-lane US-460.  The outer lanes were added in the 1940s and were concrete.  All this was rehabbed and overlaid with asphalt in the 1970s.  The concrete on the outer lanes is very old and needs complete replacement.  Periodic overlays leave things smooth for a year or so, but then concrete cracking and spalling leads to the "bump-de-bump … bump-de-bump … bump-bump … bump-de-bump … bump-bump … bump-de-bump …" ad infinitum, that you experience when you drive on that outer lane.  Truckers tell me that it is especially unpleasant in a large truck particularly in a dump truck. 

So the entire 59 miles of US-460 needs $50 to $100 million of pavement rebuilding if it is going to remain in service as the main highway.  That seems rather wasteful to spend that much money on a highway with an obsolete cross-section and obsolete profile.
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sprjus4

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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #87 on: January 07, 2019, 04:50:07 PM »

Thanks … if something doesn't show up then I won't be tempted to reply to it!

Now that you see my analysis of the cancelation of the US-460 Freeway Project, I wonder how I should proceed?  It was inherently political, and back in 2013 when the cancelation was underway, I was a VDOT employee and I could have gotten canned if the wrong persons saw what I have posted recently about this project cancelation.  I am obviously outraged by this and the loss of this highway.

Something else that I have not seen any real discussion about regarding this project is the pavement condition of the existing US-460 highway, something would have been solved by relegating the existing highway to minor primary status with very little truck traffic, and "shunpiking" could have been prevented by repainting the rural sections of the highway with 2 traffic lanes and 2 full paved shoulders. 

The inner lanes are full depth asphalt and are the original 2-lane US-460.  The outer lanes were added in the 1940s and were concrete.  All this was rehabbed and overlaid with asphalt in the 1970s.  The concrete on the outer lanes is very old and needs complete replacement.  Periodic overlays leave things smooth for a year or so, but then concrete cracking and spalling leads to the "bump-de-bump … bump-de-bump … bump-bump … bump-de-bump … bump-bump … bump-de-bump …" ad infinitum, that you experience when you drive on that outer lane.  Truckers tell me that it is especially unpleasant in a large truck particularly in a dump truck. 

So the entire 59 miles of US-460 needs $50 to $100 million of pavement rebuilding if it is going to remain in service as the main highway.  That seems rather wasteful to spend that much money on a highway with an obsolete cross-section and obsolete profile.
What would be the possibilities of VDOT revisiting the project idea and looking at new alternate corridors that aren't as environmentally sensitive? They wanted a southern route, though it appears a more northern corridor has more farmland as opposed to swamp. Also, they could criss-cross, use part of the southern, and part of the northern and still make a full 55 mile new-location route. In some alignments, it wouldn't benefit the towns as much, but would still work perfectly fine. Doing that could also allow the project to be done in "phases" meaning the likelihood of too many wetlands being crossed / impacted at once would be reduced.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #88 on: January 07, 2019, 05:27:33 PM »

[US-460 Freeway]
What would be the possibilities of VDOT revisiting the project idea and looking at new alternate corridors that aren't as environmentally sensitive? They wanted a southern route, though it appears a more northern corridor has more farmland as opposed to swamp. Also, they could criss-cross, use part of the southern, and part of the northern and still make a full 55 mile new-location route. In some alignments, it wouldn't benefit the towns as much, but would still work perfectly fine. Doing that could also allow the project to be done in "phases" meaning the likelihood of too many wetlands being crossed / impacted at once would be reduced.

The selected alternative was the best regarding environmental impacts,  IMHO.  A full relocation to the south.  Another advantage to building it in one full 59-mile project is that with the railroad being between the existing and new highway, there was no way to segmentize the project without having some low-volume temporary connectors. 

Rebuilding the existing highway to 5 modern lanes had less but still very substantial environmental impacts, and it really didn't have all that much improved service over the existing highway.  Cost was still over $800 million.

After the history of this project has unfolded with the contradictory FEIS and SEIS, I would say that the likelihood of any future real improvement project is dead -- D E A D.

VDOT will never be able to build it for the once-contracted $1.4 billion, that's for sure.  $23 million per mile for an Interstate-standard highway.  Good deal at an economic time when contractors were hungry and looking for work.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2019, 05:40:35 PM by Beltway »
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #89 on: January 07, 2019, 05:38:59 PM »

[US-460 Freeway]
What would be the possibilities of VDOT revisiting the project idea and looking at new alternate corridors that aren't as environmentally sensitive? They wanted a southern route, though it appears a more northern corridor has more farmland as opposed to swamp. Also, they could criss-cross, use part of the southern, and part of the northern and still make a full 55 mile new-location route. In some alignments, it wouldn't benefit the towns as much, but would still work perfectly fine. Doing that could also allow the project to be done in "phases" meaning the likelihood of too many wetlands being crossed / impacted at once would be reduced.

The selected alternative was the best regarding environmental impacts,  IMHO.  A full relocation to the south.  Another advantage to building it in one full 59-mile project is that with the railroad being between the existing and new highway, there was no way to segmentize the project without having some low-volume temporary connectors. 

Rebuilding the existing highway to 5 modern lanes had less but still very substantial environmental impacts, and it really didn't have all that much improved service over the existing highway.  Cost was still over $800 million.

After the history of this project has unfolded with the contradictory FEIS and SEIS, I would that the likelihood of any real improvement project is DEAD -- D E A D.

VDOT will never be able to built it for the once-contracted $1.4 billion, that's for sure.
What a shame. It hurts going back and seeing many older articles say "it will open in 2018". And it's true - improving the existing highway will cost significant, and not have the benefits of a full relocated corridor. Improving the highway will help the existing traffic that uses it, but it's little. Also, no tolls could be collected. Building a new location allows tolls, and a high-capacity, high speed bypass of the I-64 congestion corridor. I guess we have to live with what we got - a 4 lane highway, and nothing else. Literally only 4 full size lanes, no shoulders, and no median. I got a feeling eventually someone in the future will propose a new road be studied, and the whole process start all over again. But by that point it will cost $5+ billion.

The opportunity was there, the road got so close to construction, funding in place, but it had to die, similar to the long-awaited Southeastern Pkwy that tanked.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #90 on: January 07, 2019, 05:40:18 PM »

$23 million per mile for an Interstate-standard highway.  Good deal at an economic time when contractors were hungry and looking for work.
Wasn't that also the reason the US-17 relocation got built so quickly, because it was extremely cheap and bids were low? At this point, it's gonna cost double to upgrade 17 to interstate standards than it did to build it initially.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #91 on: January 07, 2019, 05:43:42 PM »

$23 million per mile for an Interstate-standard highway.  Good deal at an economic time when contractors were hungry and looking for work.
Wasn't that also the reason the US-17 relocation got built so quickly, because it was extremely cheap and bids were low? At this point, it's gonna cost double to upgrade 17 to interstate standards than it did to build it initially.

Yes.  It was not "extremely cheap" but probably 40% lower than the initial project construction estimate.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #92 on: January 07, 2019, 08:44:38 PM »

VDOT will never be able to built it [US-460 Freeway] at the contracted $1.4 billion, that's for sure.
What a shame. It hurts going back and seeing many older articles say "it will open in 2018". And it's true - improving the existing highway will cost significant, and not have the benefits of a full relocated corridor. Improving the highway will help the existing traffic that uses it, but it's little. Also, no tolls could be collected. Building a new location allows tolls, and a high-capacity, high speed bypass of the I-64 congestion corridor. I guess we have to live with what we got - a 4 lane highway, and nothing else. Literally only 4 full size lanes, no shoulders, and no median. I got a feeling eventually someone in the future will propose a new road be studied, and the whole process start all over again. But by that point it will cost $5+ billion.

It has shoulders in some places, but in most places they are too narrow to contain a vehicle.  About 10 intersections have been rebuilt to have turn lanes, and that has definitely helped provide a brief segment of modern highway.  They are not "full size lanes", at least not on the original rural sections; it is a 42 foot wide roadway, I have measured it, so that is 10.5 foot lanes.

Five 12-foot lanes cannot be built thru Windsor, so at a minimum the town would have to be bypassed.

The opportunity was there, the road got so close to construction, funding in place, but it had to die, similar to the long-awaited Southeastern Pkwy that tanked.

No comparison to the Southeastern Pkwy. whatsoever.  The US-460 NEPA process was complete (FEIS, ROD) and the contract for construction had been awarded.  There are limits to what I can say as the moderators have already objected when I got into the political aspects of how the project got killed.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #93 on: January 07, 2019, 10:42:30 PM »

^ From what I saw, it wasn't so much the political aspect itself as it was how you said it.

But I do have to ask what this all has to do with the Third Crossing?  I know we have a 460 thread somewhere around here...
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #94 on: January 07, 2019, 10:48:02 PM »

Thank the corrupt McAuliff administration for their lies and incompetence and demagoguery on the US-460 freeway project.  They produced a bogus SEIS that quadrupled the claimed acres of wetlands impacts as compared to the FHWA approved FEIS from just a few years prior.

I strongly disagree (and I have no dog in this fight).

Jim Bacon (who runs the excellent Bacon's Rebellion site about Virginia politics [full disclosure: I know Jim slightly, and he ran a photograph of mine several years ago on his site]) said this (full article here):

[Emphasis added]

Quote
The settlement allows both sides to avoid a lengthy court fight.  The payments were made under a $1.4 billion contract to build an Interstate-quality highway on U.S. 460 to improve transportation access to Hampton Roads. Construction never commenced because the state could not obtain necessary wetlands permits from the U.S. Corps of Army Engineers. The McAuliffe administration does not dispute that US 460 billed and received the money legally, but argues that the company did not spend all money it received while waiting for the permitting issues to be resolved.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #95 on: January 07, 2019, 10:56:41 PM »

As I recall, the ACoE was questioning the volume of wetlands taken by the project even before McAuliffe became governor.
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #96 on: January 07, 2019, 11:17:23 PM »

Thank the corrupt McAuliff administration for their lies and incompetence and demagoguery on the US-460 freeway project.  They produced a bogus SEIS that quadrupled the claimed acres of wetlands impacts as compared to the FHWA approved FEIS from just a few years prior.
I strongly disagree (and I have no dog in this fight).
Jim Bacon (who runs the excellent Bacon's Rebellion site about Virginia politics [full disclosure: I know Jim slightly, and he ran a photograph of mine several years ago on his site]) said this (full article here):

Jim Bacon is an anti-roads anti-mobility activist.  For that reason I have not gone to his website in years.

[Emphasis added]
Quote
The settlement allows both sides to avoid a lengthy court fight.  The payments were made under a $1.4 billion contract to build an Interstate-quality highway on U.S. 460 to improve transportation access to Hampton Roads. Construction never commenced because the state could not obtain necessary wetlands permits from the U.S. Corps of Army Engineers. The McAuliffe administration does not dispute that US 460 billed and received the money legally, but argues that the company did not spend all money it received while waiting for the permitting issues to be resolved.

Yes, that was the excuse that they used.  The fact is as I pointed out an 8-year full NEPA process was completed and approved by FHWA in 2011.  The contract was awarded in 2012 and 0bama's ACOE refused to issue the wetlands permits which should have been a routine approval at that point.  After McAuliffe came in in 2013 he got VDOT to issue a bogus SEIS that claimed over 600 acres of wetlands impacts.  The FHWA-approved FEIS from 2011 said 128 acres.  Something is rotten in Denmark here, or was back in 2013.  Wetlands areas don't just magically quintuple in 3 years.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2019, 11:54:15 PM by Beltway »
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #97 on: January 07, 2019, 11:21:15 PM »

^ From what I saw, it wasn't so much the political aspect itself as it was how you said it.

No big deal, the post I replied to got deleted by moderation as well.

But I do have to ask what this all has to do with the Third Crossing?  I know we have a 460 thread somewhere around here...

It started when I replied to a post that lamented there being no third crossing and no new US-460.
"8 years later, 460 dead, no third crossing"

The moderators are welcome to move all these recent US-460 posts to the US-460 thread, if they want.
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cpzilliacus

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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #98 on: January 08, 2019, 01:07:58 AM »

As I recall, the ACoE was questioning the volume of wetlands taken by the project even before McAuliffe became governor.

I think that is correct.  Note that I do not know what the merits of those questioning (presumably Army Corps of Engineers staff, maybe also EPA Region III staff) might have been.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2019, 01:10:30 AM by cpzilliacus »
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Re: The Hampton Roads Third Crossing Project
« Reply #99 on: January 08, 2019, 01:23:55 AM »

As I recall, the ACoE was questioning the volume of wetlands taken by the project even before McAuliffe became governor.
I think that is correct.  Note that I do not know what the merits of those questioning (presumably Army Corps of Engineers staff, maybe also EPA Region III staff) might have been.

The ACOE concurred with the alternative presented in the FEIS and ROD that FHWA approved in 2011.
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