Route 360 to benefit from governor's plan

Wednesday night, VDOT is hosting a public hearing about the 6 year improvement plan. That includes the Governor's transportation package, which calls for a number of upgrades along Route 360.

Statistics show that last year the intersection of Lee Davis and Mechanicsville Turnpike was the 2nd most dangerous in Hanover County; that's why people we spoke with are excited about the Governor's plans that pay attention to this area.

Cheryl Furr owns "Beyond Bangz" along Route 360 not far from Lee Davis High School. She and the other women who work here have a front row seat to all the action.

"We have a wonderful view right here of 360, and we've seen it all, and it's not good. I've heard the screeching tires, and you just kind of cringe and wait for the boom at the end," said Cheryl Belfield, who works along Mechanicsville Turnpike.

"There's so many accidents. The biggest concern to me would have to be our students, and then of course the effect on our business," Furr said.

Some of those fears could soon be alleviated. In April, Governor McDonnell launched a multi billion dollar plan for 900 new Virginia road projects.

Those plans include widening the Huguenot Trail, I-64 near Short Pump and Mechanicsville Turnpike. The state would sell nearly three billion dollars in bonds to pay for the roadwork. The Governor predicts the projects will pave the way for more business development in the state and create tens of thousands of new jobs over the next decade. Cheryl Belfield is excited about the road widening project, but says it's also really hard to get in and out of the shopping center she works in, and she worries it's hurting business.

"When I leave work, I make a right, and I go 20 minutes, but anybody that has to make a left, I think they would just say never mind; I really do; it's hard to get out. I'd like to see additional lanes as well as an additional stop light right out here, so you can safely turn, and I do know there expensive, but so is the loss of lives," Belfield said.

After a series of public hearings, the CTB will vote on a final plan in June. The public hearing is Wednesday night, May 18th at VDOT located at 1221 East Broad Street. It starts at 6 p.m.

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