Frustration about plans for the Route 29 Western Bypass, or lack thereof, is rippling down the 29 corridor. The Lynchburg Chamber of Commerce is speaking out about the bypass it’s wanted for decades.
The chamber’s vice president, Christine Kennedy says a national highway is being held hostage by one jurisdiction. The city is sick of waiting around for bypass plans so it's taking matters into its own hands.
Kennedy says putting together a new plan isn't a choice; the city has to do it
"We will have a strategy publicized in the very near future. It could as soon as tomorrow,” she said.
Kennedy says Danville and Lynchburg built bypasses in good faith that Charlottesville would do the same, and now the rest of the state is being punished because one jurisdiction won't move plans forward.
Kennedy is frustrated with the bypass being treated as a local road when it's supposed to be a national highway.
"One of the opposers of the bypass said it's not that we're opposed to solutions. OK well then let’s find one that works for the entire state and not just the residents of one community,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy says this has been most frustrating for the 850 businesses in Lynchburg, especially the trucking companies. They feel held hostage now that federal transportation officials told the state to look at other options.
Wednesday night, the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors approved a resolution asking to redirect the unspent bypass money to other projects. Kennedy says, if that's the case, she wants her tax money back.
"It's a real tragedy that our political process is that broken,” she said.
As for the city's new plan Kennedy says the goal is to provide safe, quality access to Northern Virginia. Now the question is: how?
Frustration with Albemarle’s Anti-Bypass Resolution Ripples Down 29More>>