Transportation Meeting

By: Shane Symolon
By: Shane Symolon

The Commonwealth Transportation Board passed a resolution today to make much needed improvements to Interstate 81.

The meeting started with feedback from Bristol to Harrisonburg through a teleconference.

Hobey Bauhan with the Virginia Poultry Federation thanked the board for looking into other solutions beyond tolls for truckers.

"There are things we can do to improve the safety of Interstate 81 without burdening the economy of Western Virginia and the Shenandoah Valley."

After the public meeting those safety problems were addressed.

Safety solutions voted on today include extended on and off ramps, more guard rails and truck climbing lanes.

They also want to put trucks on rail to get them off the highway.

Transportation Secretary Pierce Homer says they don't have the money to make all the changes.

"The combined immediate safety and truck climbing needs are in the vicinity of 700-million dollars so we're able to meet about 20 percent of our immediate needs, we have no funding to do the long term improvements that are necessary," says Transportation Secretary Homer.

Transportation Secretary Homer says that at this point it’s almost out of the board’s hands.


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