U.S. Route 460 corridor improvements project

By Nicole Bell - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – A major push Tuesday morning to get the wheels turning on a billion dollar road project. The state is trying to make the "460 toll road project" more attractive for industry.

Today, VDOT laid out incentives to potential builders. Those incentives include a waiver of certain taxes and subsidizing the project with state money.

The U.S. 460 corridor toll road would run south of the existing Route 460. It would stretch 55 miles between Petersburg and Suffolk. Four lanes would be constructed at a price of about $1.7-billion. Today, the state wheeled out multiple reasons to help drive perspective builders on board the public-private transportation project.

"Potential waiver of certain taxes. We'd consider a phased approach to building route 460 to reduce cost," said Gregory Whirley, VDOT Commissioner.

The state says the new corridor is needed to improve travel safety, create a new westbound evacuation route for Hampton Roads, and to accommodate increases in freight movement.

"We believe in years to come you're going to see much more shipping coming into that area which means more freight traffic coming up 460 and 64 we have to be ahead of that curve, said Whirley.

Truck drivers like Shawn Jarratt wonder how much tolls on the new corridor will be. Estimates as high as $13 have been reported.

"I go up 460 five or six times a day. You pay 13 bucks every time you go that's 70 or 80 bucks a day -- that will put a small business man like me out of business," said Whirley.

Jarratt says that would be the reason why he would not use the new 460 corridor. For now, the state is hoping to get solid proposals from developers interested in helping to bring the project to life.

"We want to let them know the department is very serious about this project and we will have a new route 460 in that area," said Whirley.

The state expects to select a builder no later than November 2011.

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