HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - Drivers in Short Pump are beginning to figure out that there's a new way to avoid some of the traffic that plagues the area. Last week, a segment of the new John Rolfe Parkway extension opened between West Broad Street and Three Chopt Road.
The new segment, gives drivers a way to get through all the West Broad Street congestion without having to wind through a construction zone anymore. Most drivers are discovering the new John Rolfe Parkway extension for the first time and so far, they like what they see.
Construction began in 2008 to make schools and neighborhoods more accessible. It also allows drivers to avoid the stop-and-go traffic of West Road.
"It's great, because it keeps the little one in the back quiet. She likes to keep moving, so as long as we're moving we're good," said resident Jennifer Williams.
Before the new parkway opened, drivers would often meander through West Broad Village construction as a shortcut but as of last night, that was officially closed. The new parkway comes with new traffic signals, and crosswalks...making the area more pedestrian friendly.
"There are a lot of runners and joggers in the area, so this is another path that they can utilize," said Rob Tieman, Henrico County Public Works.
Ultimately, the extension will be expected to carry 15,000 cars a day.
"When you're out there, you can certain see it's being used. Which is very rewarding," he said.
There is more to come. The parkway will extend to Church Road by next summer and then to Ridgefield Parkway by 2011.