Michelle Earl 276-696-3283
May 24, 2012
Transportation board approves location for I-77/I-81 overlap in southwest Virginia
BRISTOL—The Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) recently selected the location for the I-77/I-81 overlap in Wythe County choosing Candidate Build Alternative B, which adds one travel lane in each direction at the current location of the overlap.
“The board took a significant action to improve mobility in a heavily congested region by approving a location for the I-77/I-81 Overlap in Wythe County,” said VDOT Bristol District Administrator Michael Russell, P.E. “This area is not only an important transportation link for Virginia but to North Carolina and West Virginia as well.”
VDOT presented three alternatives during a public hearing in September 2011; Candidate Build A, separation of the two interstates; Candidate Build B, the addition of one travel lane in each direction and a no-build option.
The next steps in the process are to revise the environmental assessment based on the board’s decision and public comment received during the September 2011 public hearing, then request a final decision on the environmental assessment from the Federal Highway Administration.
The cost estimate for Candidate Build Alternative B is $457 million and includes preliminary engineering, right of way and construction. Currently, funding has not been identified for these phases.
Link to study website: http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/bristol/i-77-81_overlap.asp.
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