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Author Topic: I-73 in VA  (Read 97436 times)

Beltway

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #350 on: March 02, 2018, 02:22:56 PM »

Those of you who drives on US 220 EVERYDAY (like I do) knows what it is like. To say that the highway is "capable" is meaningless if you don't drive on it everyday. Drive on it EVERYDAY and you will get a different opinion.

It is an order of magnitude more capable than a 2-lane nonlimited-access highway that passes thru towns.  SMH.  SMPP.
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Strider

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #351 on: March 02, 2018, 02:44:51 PM »

Those of you who drives on US 220 EVERYDAY (like I do) knows what it is like. To say that the highway is "capable" is meaningless if you don't drive on it everyday. Drive on it EVERYDAY and you will get a different opinion.

It is an order of magnitude more capable than a 2-lane nonlimited-access highway that passes thru towns.  SMH.  SMPP.

says a person who doesn't commute on US 220 everyday. Okay. good job.
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Beltway

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #352 on: March 02, 2018, 02:59:14 PM »

Those of you who drives on US 220 EVERYDAY (like I do) knows what it is like. To say that the highway is "capable" is meaningless if you don't drive on it everyday. Drive on it EVERYDAY and you will get a different opinion.
It is an order of magnitude more capable than a 2-lane nonlimited-access highway that passes thru towns.  SMH.  SMPP.
says a person who doesn't commute on US 220 everyday. Okay. good job.

I was referring back to something that was posted yesterday. 
If you don't like what I have to say then don't read it.
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The Ghostbuster

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #353 on: March 02, 2018, 05:47:59 PM »

If Interstate 73 in Virginia is not constructed, what could be done to improve existing US 220 between Roanoke and the North Carolina border?
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Strider

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #354 on: March 02, 2018, 07:59:43 PM »

Those of you who drives on US 220 EVERYDAY (like I do) knows what it is like. To say that the highway is "capable" is meaningless if you don't drive on it everyday. Drive on it EVERYDAY and you will get a different opinion.
It is an order of magnitude more capable than a 2-lane nonlimited-access highway that passes thru towns.  SMH.  SMPP.
says a person who doesn't commute on US 220 everyday. Okay. good job.

I was referring back to something that was posted yesterday. 
If you don't like what I have to say then don't read it.


Over something that was posted YESTERDAY. okay. good job. haha.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2018, 08:07:00 PM by Strider »
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Strider

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #355 on: March 02, 2018, 08:05:43 PM »

If Interstate 73 in Virginia is not constructed, what could be done to improve existing US 220 between Roanoke and the North Carolina border?

If that ever happens, I can think of a few things: safety improvements for some intersections, correct some dangerous curves, maybe widening the shoulders and make it a little bit wider (close to interstate standards), but some sharp curves definitely needed to be addressed first.
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Beltway

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #356 on: March 03, 2018, 01:42:08 AM »

Those of you who drives on US 220 EVERYDAY (like I do) knows what it is like. To say that the highway is "capable" is meaningless if you don't drive on it everyday. Drive on it EVERYDAY and you will get a different opinion.
It is an order of magnitude more capable than a 2-lane nonlimited-access highway that passes thru towns.  SMH.  SMPP.
says a person who doesn't commute on US 220 everyday. Okay. good job.
I was referring back to something that was posted yesterday. 
If you don't like what I have to say then don't read it.
Over something that was posted YESTERDAY. okay. good job. haha.

Post #339 in this thread.
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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #357 on: March 04, 2018, 01:44:07 PM »

Those of you who drives on US 220 EVERYDAY (like I do) knows what it is like. To say that the highway is "capable" is meaningless if you don't drive on it everyday. Drive on it EVERYDAY and you will get a different opinion.
It is an order of magnitude more capable than a 2-lane nonlimited-access highway that passes thru towns.  SMH.  SMPP.
says a person who doesn't commute on US 220 everyday. Okay. good job.
I was referring back to something that was posted yesterday. 
If you don't like what I have to say then don't read it.
Over something that was posted YESTERDAY. okay. good job. haha.

Post #339 in this thread.

Thanks, Scott, for the cite.  IMO, this is what's going to happen in both near and long terms:  Near term: I-73 will be built as an upgrade of US 220 from the NC line to the Martinsville bypass (more as a SIU than the beginning of the more extensive concept).  North of there, existing 220 will be signed (if it already isn't) as "Future I-73 Corridor".*  That will be the status quo until sometime in the late 2020's when post-US 58 funds become available.  By that time there will likely be additional housing development south of Roanoke that will complicate any potential I-73 alignment -- and the fun starts there.  Eventually an alignment quite a distance from the present 220 will be selected, driving the price up another half-billion, which will put the opening of the full facility out into the late 2030's.  So, 20-odd years from now, I-73 will be complete from Roanoke to (?). 

* How much "future I-73" signage is there on the 220 or even I-581 corridors?  And will such continue to be posted in Henry County now that they're out of the coalition?   
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Beltway

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #358 on: March 04, 2018, 03:11:46 PM »

Thanks, Scott, for the cite.  IMO, this is what's going to happen in both near and long terms:  Near term: I-73 will be built as an upgrade of US 220 from the NC line to the Martinsville bypass (more as a SIU than the beginning of the more extensive concept).  North of there, existing 220 will be signed (if it already isn't) as "Future I-73 Corridor".*  That will be the status quo until sometime in the late 2020's when post-US 58 funds become available.  By that time there will likely be additional housing development south of Roanoke that will complicate any potential I-73 alignment -- and the fun starts there.  Eventually an alignment quite a distance from the present 220 will be selected, driving the price up another half-billion, which will put the opening of the full facility out into the late 2030's.  So, 20-odd years from now, I-73 will be complete from Roanoke to (?). 

I don't see the point for starting with the NC line to Martinsville bypass segment, that is the lowest volume segment on US-220 south of I-81 and the existing highway is adequate.

I would suggest starting from the north, from VA-419, the first segment upgrading along the existing US-220 for 2 or 3 miles, that is the most congested segment.  From there to get a usable second segment it would be necessary to go down to VA-40 at Rocky Mount, where about 1.5 miles of VA-40 west of the bypass is already 4 lanes, so the temporary connection would use a 4-lane VA-40 to connect to the pre-existing US-220 bypass.

This is using the currently approved I-73 alignment.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2018, 03:20:44 PM by Beltway »
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Jmiles32

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #359 on: March 04, 2018, 03:17:12 PM »

IMO, this is what's going to happen in both near and long terms:  Near term: I-73 will be built as an upgrade of US 220 from the NC line to the Martinsville bypass (more as a SIU than the beginning of the more extensive concept).  North of there, existing 220 will be signed (if it already isn't) as "Future I-73 Corridor".*  That will be the status quo until sometime in the late 2020's when post-US 58 funds become available.

What makes you think that in the near-term I-73 will be built from the NC line to the Martinsville Bypass?

By that time there will likely be additional housing development south of Roanoke that will complicate any potential I-73 alignment -- and the fun starts there.  Eventually an alignment quite a distance from the present 220 will be selected, driving the price up another half-billion, which will put the opening of the full facility out into the late 2030's.  So, 20-odd years from now, I-73 will be complete from Roanoke to (?). 

While I agree with the potential problem south of Roanoke, I don't see a fully completed I-73 opening in the late 2030's.
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Strider

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #360 on: March 05, 2018, 12:47:22 AM »

Thanks, Scott, for the cite.  IMO, this is what's going to happen in both near and long terms:  Near term: I-73 will be built as an upgrade of US 220 from the NC line to the Martinsville bypass (more as a SIU than the beginning of the more extensive concept).  North of there, existing 220 will be signed (if it already isn't) as "Future I-73 Corridor".*  That will be the status quo until sometime in the late 2020's when post-US 58 funds become available.  By that time there will likely be additional housing development south of Roanoke that will complicate any potential I-73 alignment -- and the fun starts there.  Eventually an alignment quite a distance from the present 220 will be selected, driving the price up another half-billion, which will put the opening of the full facility out into the late 2030's.  So, 20-odd years from now, I-73 will be complete from Roanoke to (?). 

I don't see the point for starting with the NC line to Martinsville bypass segment, that is the lowest volume segment on US-220 south of I-81 and the existing highway is adequate.

I would suggest starting from the north, from VA-419, the first segment upgrading along the existing US-220 for 2 or 3 miles, that is the most congested segment.  From there to get a usable second segment it would be necessary to go down to VA-40 at Rocky Mount, where about 1.5 miles of VA-40 west of the bypass is already 4 lanes, so the temporary connection would use a 4-lane VA-40 to connect to the pre-existing US-220 bypass.

This is using the currently approved I-73 alignment.


Wrong. There is a pretty good amount of traffic on US 220 between the Martinsville bypass and NC/VA state line. To say it is adequate is funny. Clearly you have never been on that part of US 220 everyday.
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Strider

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #361 on: March 05, 2018, 12:48:59 AM »

IMO, this is what's going to happen in both near and long terms:  Near term: I-73 will be built as an upgrade of US 220 from the NC line to the Martinsville bypass (more as a SIU than the beginning of the more extensive concept).  North of there, existing 220 will be signed (if it already isn't) as "Future I-73 Corridor".*  That will be the status quo until sometime in the late 2020's when post-US 58 funds become available.

What makes you think that in the near-term I-73 will be built from the NC line to the Martinsville Bypass?

By that time there will likely be additional housing development south of Roanoke that will complicate any potential I-73 alignment -- and the fun starts there.  Eventually an alignment quite a distance from the present 220 will be selected, driving the price up another half-billion, which will put the opening of the full facility out into the late 2030's.  So, 20-odd years from now, I-73 will be complete from Roanoke to (?). 

While I agree with the potential problem south of Roanoke, I don't see a fully completed I-73 opening in the late 2030's.

The study is only focused on the part from NC/VA state line to Martinsville bypass, in which the segment was proposed to be built FIRST.

I-73 will be completed, but not in our lifetime.
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sparker

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #362 on: March 05, 2018, 02:49:51 AM »

The study is only focused on the part from NC/VA state line to Martinsville bypass, in which the segment was proposed to be built FIRST.

I-73 will be completed, but not in our lifetime.

I'd be pushing 90 in the late 2030's, so the odds are you're probably correct -- at least as concerns my own lifetime.  But this is a different situation than with I-87 to the east regarding a continuation of a NC project across the state line;  the benefits accruing to Martinsville (largely because of the speedway) would be tangible with continuous Interstate-grade access to the rest of the system via a southern connection to the NC I-73 segment.  While Henry County might have some misgivings about tackling the whole corridor, handling just that segment as a local-benefit SIU after NC actually extends its I-73 segment to the state line seems like a no-brainer.  And since in-state NC action on their northernmost segment of the route remains several years off in any case, that allows planners time in which to plan the improvements.   
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Beltway

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #363 on: March 05, 2018, 07:01:09 AM »

I don't see the point for starting with the NC line to Martinsville bypass segment, that is the lowest volume segment on US-220 south of I-81 and the existing highway is adequate.
Wrong. There is a pretty good amount of traffic on US 220 between the Martinsville bypass and NC/VA state line. To say it is adequate is funny. Clearly you have never been on that part of US 220 everyday.

It is a high speed 4-lane divided highway, and has a bypass of Ridgeway.  It's traffic volumes are modest for the type of highway.

US-220 volume ranges by section rounded --
NC to US-58 -- 12,000 AADT
Martinsville to Rocky Mount -- 16,000 AADT
Rocky Mount to VA-419 -- 24,000 AADT

Shows why I recommend starting from the north and working to the south.
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VTGoose

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #364 on: March 05, 2018, 10:03:32 AM »


It is a high speed 4-lane divided highway, and has a bypass of Ridgeway.  It's traffic volumes are modest for the type of highway.

US-220 volume ranges by section rounded --
NC to US-58 -- 12,000 AADT
Martinsville to Rocky Mount -- 16,000 AADT
Rocky Mount to VA-419 -- 24,000 AADT

Shows why I recommend starting from the north and working to the south.

That is what makes the most sense but it will also have an incredibly high price tag. There isn't enough room on the existing road between VA 419 and Clearbrook to do much of anything -- unless a number of businesses are wiped out to build frontage roads to serve those that are left. From a routing standpoint (but NIMBYs will be thick) it would make sense to follow the NS tracks from I-581 through Tanglewood Mall and on west, then south to Starkey. Once through the gap there, either a route somewhere along Va. 615 or Va. 613 to go through the gap just north of Boones Mill. From there a route to the east to bypass Boones Mill, then south to the Rocky Mount bypass. That is a lot of countryside to plow through and that is what has tied up plans in the past.

There is at least one "Future I-73 Corridor" sign on I-581, in the vicinity of the Hershberger Road exit.

Bruce in Blacksburg (an occasional traveler on U.S. 220)
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Beltway

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #365 on: March 05, 2018, 10:30:57 AM »

Shows why I recommend starting from the north and working to the south.
That is what makes the most sense but it will also have an incredibly high price tag. There isn't enough room on the existing road between VA 419 and Clearbrook to do much of anything -- unless a number of businesses are wiped out to build frontage roads to serve those that are left. From a routing standpoint (but NIMBYs will be thick) it would make sense to follow the NS tracks from I-581 through Tanglewood Mall and on west, then south to Starkey. Once through the gap there, either a route somewhere along Va. 615 or Va. 613 to go through the gap just north of Boones Mill. From there a route to the east to bypass Boones Mill, then south to the Rocky Mount bypass. That is a lot of countryside to plow through and that is what has tied up plans in the past.
There is at least one "Future I-73 Corridor" sign on I-581, in the vicinity of the Hershberger Road exit.
Bruce in Blacksburg (an occasional traveler on U.S. 220)

That was one of the alternates listed in the Final EIS --
Option 3a follows I-581 and U.S. Route 220 similar to Option 3 with one departure north of the interchange at existing Route 419 (Electric Road).  At this location, Option 3a departs from existing U.S. Route 220 and generally follows the railroad corridor to the southwest, turns south along the west side of Buck Mountain, and connects back into U.S. Route 220 just north of Boones Mill.

Satellite view shows about 2 miles of fairly urbanized area from US-220 down along the railroad line, mostly businesses, a number of them probably would have to be removed.

The approved line from VA-419 southward would have some rather expensive construction for 2 miles as it follows the existing US-220 highway.   They could depress the I-73 highway and use retaining walls in a couple places to minimize the right-of-way impacts, but that would be rather expensive.  Then there is the question of where to build ramps to serve the business complex a half mile south of VA-419, and what kind of circulator roads to build.  It might cost $150 to $200 million for those 2 miles, maybe more if the US-29 upgrade at Gainesville is any guide.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2018, 10:33:40 AM by Beltway »
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LM117

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #366 on: March 28, 2018, 08:47:58 AM »

Henry County is back in the I-73 Coalition.

http://www.wdbj7.com/content/news/Henry-County-remains-a-member-of-I-73-Coalition-478113953.html

Quote
All five members of the Interstate 73 coalition will remain, after a vote Tuesday.

The Henry County Board of Supervisors first voted during its February meeting on whether to renew it's contract with a lobbying firm, but the motion died in a split decision.

One of the board members that previously voted no has now changed his mind.

"I previously thought one of the other members of the coalition was going to leave the coalition, but now all four other members have stayed in, I've reevaluated my position," says Board of Supervisors member Ryan Zehr.

The motion passed four to two.

The board will pay $18,000 per year to the lobbying firm advocating for I-73 on state and federal levels.

The coalition also includes Martinsville, Roanoke, and Franklin and Roanoke Counties.
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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #367 on: March 28, 2018, 09:16:17 AM »

Henry County is back in the I-73 Coalition.

In other news, St. Jude has also been named as a member of the coalition (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jude_the_Apostle)   :D
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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #368 on: April 25, 2018, 01:14:33 PM »

The Senate passed Bill Stanley’s I-73 funding bill. It’s expected to pass the House when it gets voted on later this month.

http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/news/a-costly-question-what-s-the-future-look-like-for/article_b5e3b218-143e-11e8-85f2-67ab23f443b7.html

According to this March 22 article, the House of Delegates Appropriations Committee killed the bill. The chairman of the committee, Chris Jones (R-Suffolk), refused to bring it up for a hearing. Stanley was not happy...

http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/news/building-blocks-is-there-another-way-to-build-i/article_7159fed6-2e42-11e8-b366-e735a4b75459.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=user-share
« Last Edit: April 25, 2018, 01:26:16 PM by LM117 »
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sparker

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #369 on: April 25, 2018, 03:45:32 PM »

The Senate passed Bill Stanley’s I-73 funding bill. It’s expected to pass the House when it gets voted on later this month.

http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/news/a-costly-question-what-s-the-future-look-like-for/article_b5e3b218-143e-11e8-85f2-67ab23f443b7.html

According to this March 22 article, the House of Delegates Appropriations Committee killed the bill. The chairman of the committee, Chris Jones (R-Suffolk), refused to bring it up for a hearing. Stanley was not happy...

http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/news/building-blocks-is-there-another-way-to-build-i/article_7159fed6-2e42-11e8-b366-e735a4b75459.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=user-share

It's interesting that given this latest setback -- although even if passed, there would be a few decades of thumb-twiddling before any projects were let, has prompted -- according to the article cited -- an attempt to concentrate on strictly the segment from the NC state line to the US 58 Martinsville bypass -- which apparently could be rationalized and "written up" as more of a safety than capacity project, effectively separating it from the longer full I-73 proposal.  At least that would lend some credence to the NC project string north of Greensboro -- a trunk Interstate ending at a significant town and/or feeder route rather than a random "project end" point offers some measure of public value rather than a simple exercise in relative political will. 
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Beltway

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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #370 on: April 25, 2018, 04:13:28 PM »

It's interesting that given this latest setback -- although even if passed, there would be a few decades of thumb-twiddling before any projects were let, has prompted -- according to the article cited -- an attempt to concentrate on strictly the segment from the NC state line to the US 58 Martinsville bypass -- which apparently could be rationalized and "written up" as more of a safety than capacity project, effectively separating it from the longer full I-73 proposal.  At least that would lend some credence to the NC project string north of Greensboro -- a trunk Interstate ending at a significant town and/or feeder route rather than a random "project end" point offers some measure of public value rather than a simple exercise in relative political will. 

That is 4 miles, and at $30 million per mile that would be $120 million.  For a road where a 4-lane divided highway already exists.  Doesn't seem to be a viable use of scarce highway construction funds.
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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #371 on: April 25, 2018, 04:54:57 PM »

It's interesting that given this latest setback -- although even if passed, there would be a few decades of thumb-twiddling before any projects were let, has prompted -- according to the article cited -- an attempt to concentrate on strictly the segment from the NC state line to the US 58 Martinsville bypass -- which apparently could be rationalized and "written up" as more of a safety than capacity project, effectively separating it from the longer full I-73 proposal.  At least that would lend some credence to the NC project string north of Greensboro -- a trunk Interstate ending at a significant town and/or feeder route rather than a random "project end" point offers some measure of public value rather than a simple exercise in relative political will. 

That is 4 miles, and at $30 million per mile that would be $120 million.  For a road where a 4-lane divided highway already exists.  Doesn't seem to be a viable use of scarce highway construction funds.

It's likely that even that 4-mile project would be let only after significant progress on the E-W US 58 corridor had been made.  One would figure that if SW VA isn't, at least for the present, getting the full I-73 project, then a small token limited-access section deployed a decade or so down the line wouldn't be begrudged either at official or observational levels -- i.e., throw SW VA a bone once in a while.  There are probably reasons why that short stretch draws attention regarding safety issues (numerous private access points on the existing facility being an obvious problem); ignoring them simply because the existing facility is multilane and divided seems a bit petty.  Obviously the methods used to eliminate private access to present US 220 will account for much of that $30M/mile estimate -- but in reality these days, that's not out of line with what that type of facility costs in that physical environment.  But OTOH, if VA elects to prioritize available funds for its three major metro areas (attending to the "squeaky wheels" first), then it looks like SW VA will be S.O.L. for the foreseeable future -- so even 4 miles of limited-access facility might be fiscally problematic.  We'll just have to see; it'll all depend upon whether that region can mobilize enough political clout to get anything accomplished. 
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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #372 on: April 25, 2018, 09:17:02 PM »

It will score very low on the SMART SCALE system.   As the article pointed out, there are much higher commitments on the nearby US-58 Corridor projects.

"The debt already issued to pay for the Route 58 Corridor Program isn’t enough to finish the project.  The Virginia General Assembly in 2013 authorized another $595.7 million in debt to be issued for work on the Crooked Oak, Vesta and Lover’s Leap sections of Route 58.  That increased the project’s debt from $704.3 million to $1.3 billion."

"As it stands, that $595.7 million hasn’t been issued yet.  The commonwealth’s current Six-Year Improvement Program shows it will happen in three sets of bonds, with the first issued in 2020, the second in 2021 and finally, the third in 2023.  Also, there’s no guarantee yet that those three sets of bonds will be enough to finish Route 58 [by 2028]."

It was decided back in 1989 when the U.S. Route 58 Corridor Development Program established, that large amounts of bond debt would be used, to be retired by the state recordation tax revenues.  That annual debt service will greatly increase after those new bonds have been issued.  This is a considerably gift to the region, toll-free bond funded construction that will be debt-serviced by the whole state.

Stop obsessing about I-73.  There are much higher priorities nearby, and on a highway that has 2 lanes in a mountainous area.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2018, 09:22:47 PM by Beltway »
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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #373 on: April 25, 2018, 10:36:33 PM »

It will score very low on the SMART SCALE system.   As the article pointed out, there are much higher commitments on the nearby US-58 Corridor projects.

"The debt already issued to pay for the Route 58 Corridor Program isn’t enough to finish the project.  The Virginia General Assembly in 2013 authorized another $595.7 million in debt to be issued for work on the Crooked Oak, Vesta and Lover’s Leap sections of Route 58.  That increased the project’s debt from $704.3 million to $1.3 billion."

"As it stands, that $595.7 million hasn’t been issued yet.  The commonwealth’s current Six-Year Improvement Program shows it will happen in three sets of bonds, with the first issued in 2020, the second in 2021 and finally, the third in 2023.  Also, there’s no guarantee yet that those three sets of bonds will be enough to finish Route 58 [by 2028]."

It was decided back in 1989 when the U.S. Route 58 Corridor Development Program established, that large amounts of bond debt would be used, to be retired by the state recordation tax revenues.  That annual debt service will greatly increase after those new bonds have been issued.  This is a considerably gift to the region, toll-free bond funded construction that will be debt-serviced by the whole state.

Stop obsessing about I-73.  There are much higher priorities nearby, and on a highway that has 2 lanes in a mountainous area.

Of course there are higher priorities -- and those, according to all accounts, will be dealt with before a shovel is turned on I-73.  But the plain fact is that it was VA-based interests that got the corridor routed up US 220 to begin with some 20+ years ago; it's still on the books in its '95 form.  Now, one can talk on and on about the fact that there's a relatively rigid scoring system VA uses to evaluate projects -- and the virtues of that methodology; but this is in the context of an overarching theme to a number of threads, particularly those concerning nascent/future Interstate corridors -- that they are intrinsically flawed because they more often than not are the product of political machinations rather than plans eked out within state and/or local transportation departments.  The general gist among critics of this phenomenon seems to be that absent these political machinations, there would be few if any new Interstate corridors.  The presence of any divided/multilane facility within a given corridor, regardless of access control, seems to evoke the sentiment that "it's adequate, and an Interstate-grade replacement facility would be wasteful". 

It's not that some of us are obsessing over I-73, I-87, or any other proposed corridor in this particular region; it's just that there seems to be a propensity for actors in both the political and bureaucratic arenas to engage in a bit of "bait and switch" when it comes to large-scale projects such as a planned Interstate corridor of this magnitude.  If the state legislature, VADOT, and other entities involved in the project activity (or lack thereof) had no intention of following through with the project, that should have been transmitted to the concept's backers some 23 years ago.  Now if the political environment in VA has changed to the point where such deception -- or even lack of meaningful communication -- is institutionalized (which, I'll acknowledge, has to some degree occurred where rabidly anti-tax activists have gained the upper hand) to the point where no project, regardless of initial political and institutional support, can be certain of some degree of continued attention, then my sympathies go out to anyone dealing with those groups. 

I suppose some north of the state line will look south to NC and characterize the highway developmental atmosphere there as silly and spendthrift -- and that dragging their projects to or near the state line is simply pointless.  But one thing that seems to typify their approach is that "adequate" just isn't in their lexicon.  Perhaps they've seen too many disastrous "T-bone" wrecks on conventional divided highways and are looking to minimize the effects of such incidents.  But, like VA, they have their share of politically active folks who bristle at public revenue-raising methods -- but they almost always seem to find a way to construct limited-access roads, Interstate and otherwise.  North of the line, not so much (yeah, I know, different structure, atmosphere, and circumstances -- NC doesn't have DC metro to deal with!).  But that system seems to have led to the present situation -- just to use the I-73 dilemma as an example -- the original backers of the project made their bed right on top of the layers of state policy -- but no one in any position of authority or influence currently seems to want to lie in it -- simply kicking the can so far down the road in hopes no one will ever find it again.  Not a particularly transparent -- or even-handed -- way to handle an issue.

My late father had a saying (which he obviously stole from somewhere else):  if you don't like my peaches, don't shake my tree!  In regards to VA, that Roanoke tree shouldn't have been shaken two decades ago unless they were prepared to make peach pie!             
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Re: I-73 in VA
« Reply #374 on: April 25, 2018, 11:15:46 PM »

You're obsessed.  You live over 2,500 miles away and you just can't help yourself.

Priorities change.  Costs change.  Environmental impacts change.  What was possible 25 years ago might become a low priority in the future.  There is no obligation to build something just because it was a good idea sometime in the past, particularly when there is a high-speed 4-lane divided highway already in the corridor.  If it was still possible to build this highway for $10 million per mile, then I would be an enthusiastic supporter to put high priority on it.  Highway construction costs have skyrocketed in the last 10 years in a manner that no one had envisioned.  In the current environment I-73 is not a priority.
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