VDOT board hears from Staunton District about five year project plans

Interstate 81
Interstate 81(WHSV)
Published: May. 3, 2023 at 11:53 PM EDT
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WEYERS CAVE, Va. (WHSV) - Wednesday, residents and elected officials met at Blue Ridge Community College to talk about VDOT’s five-year plan in the Staunton District.

From I-81 widening to Smart Scale projects and the Shenandoah rail trail, the Virginia Department of Transportation heard from the community about future projects they would like to see.

“There’s 300 each way on 81, the Staunton district accounts for half of those miles, 150 miles,” H. Randolph Laird, at-large rural on VDOT’s Board said. “So a 2.7 billion dollar project is a significant investment for the Staunton District.”

Many projects are already planned up and down I-81 in the Staunton District and some brought their concerns to the board about certain roadways.

“The bridges and structure need to have the capacity for modern agriculture so I encourage us to look forward to working together on that,” Chris Runion, Virginia State Delegate for the 25th district said.

However, many people attended the meeting to talk about the Shenandoah rail trail project.

“We need another reason for folks to visit our small towns something for additional growth and attract people to come see what we have to offer and hopefully they fall in love with our community and come back again,” Donald DeLaughter, mayor of Timberville said.

Projects that have already broke ground are showing promising progress.

”Projects funded in the smart scale that are recently constructed or will soon be underway we think will really improve the safety in the area we’re looking forward to seeing a change in that because that’s such an important thing,” Brad Arrowood, Staunton City Council member said.

All the comments will be considered for the 2024 through 2029 Virginia Department of Transportation budget.