Council Approves More Funding for Traffic Signal Technology on 29
Monday night, Charlottesville City Council voted to move money for new traffic signal technology to make the trip down Route 29 smoother. The city already set aside nearly a half-million dollars for the project, but needed more to make it a reality.
Charlottesville initially wanted to join Albemarle County to sync stop lights along the corridor, but VDOT declared that wouldn't be possible due to different funding sources.
“Council put up the money, then VDOT came back and said, 'Oops two things: we didn't give you the right estimate of the cost, and we can't let you pair with the county',” said Jim Tolbert, director of neighborhood development services.
VDOT says the original cost of $450,000 for the system only covered equipment - not installation. The new price tag is now between $750,000 and $850,000.
“It's gotten a little more complicated than that, it's gotten a little more expensive than we initially thought, but I for one still think it's a really good investment,” said Kristin Szakos, city councilor.
So councilors voted to move state revenue sharing funds to cover the difference.
“The value of this type of project is that it's been proven that you get tremendous benefits in the capacity of your roadway for a relatively inexpensive fix and also a fix that doesn't involve widening roads and doing a lot of physical improvements,” said Tolbert.
Council’s vote was unanimous.
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