Washington, DC—Members of the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB) voted today to include transportation projects – such as proposals to expand and convert I-395 HOV lanes inside the Capital Beltway to Express Lanes and to expand the District of Columbia’s dedicated bicycle lane network – in an air quality analysis for the 2016 amendment of the region’s Constrained Long-Range Plan (CLRP).
The CLRP identifies regional highway or transit projects that area transportation agencies expect to build, operate, and maintain over the next 20 to 30 years. To be included in the CLRP, transportation projects must meet federal air quality standards. Following the completion of the air quality conformity analysis, which evaluates emissions of four key pollutants, the TPB will make the final vote on the 2016 CLRP Amendment in November.
“Moving forward with the air quality analysis is the next key step in making these transportation projects a reality,” said Timothy Lovain, TPB Chairman.
At its February meeting, the board announced that the project submissions were released for a 30-day public comment period, which ended on March 12. During today’s meeting, the board reviewed the public comments and discussed responses to concerns, questions, and endorsements about the projects.
Each year, the TPB amends the CLRP to include new projects and updates to existing projects. From roads to rails to bike lanes, the 2016 CLRP Amendment includes a variety of projects. The following are some of the projects that are considered major additions or changes this year:
The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) proposes to convert the two existing reversible high-occupancy vehicle lanes on I-395 inside the Capital Beltway to a three-lane, reversible high-occupancy/toll or Express Lanes. The I-395 Express Lanes project will connect the existing I-95 Express Lanes to the vicinity of Eads Street in Arlington.
Virginia Railway Express (VRE) and VDOT are proposing to extend the VRE Manassas Line by approximately 11 miles to Gainesville and Haymarket. The VRE Haymarket Extension project will include up to three new stations and the purchase of additional railcars.
Additionally, VDOT is proposing to change the scope and timing of the tolling and lane widenings on I-66 inside the Beltway. This project was added to the CLRP in 2015.
The District Department of Transportation proposes to expand the District of Columbia’s dedicated bicycle lane network by removing one or more travel lanes for motor vehicles along several road segments, including 4th Street and Constitution Avenue.
More information about the projects.