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VDOT releases new scores, recommendations for funding transportation projects

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The Virginia Department of Transportation released on Tuesday its new scorecard for more than 300 transportation projects vying for $1.7 billion in funding.

The transportation agency also released its initial funding recommendations based on the new scorecard. The Commonwealth Transportation Board will make its own revisions and hold public hearings on the proposals before finalizing its decisions in June.

The new scoring is part of House Bill 2, which changed how the state prioritizes its transportation funding. Virginia Business reported on the new transportation legislation in its January cover story.

“Political wish lists of the past are replaced with a data-driven process that is objective and transparent, making the best use of renewed state funding received in 2013 and the recently approved federal transportation funding,” Gov. Terry McAuliffe said in a statement. “Each project is scored based on its merits and value, making Virginia the first state in the nation to use such an outcome-based prioritization process.”

In the first round of funding, 130 localities and regional groups submitted more than 300 projects valued at more than $7 billion for $1.7 billion available in the six-year construction plan.

Under the new law, projects are scored on six criteria: congestion reduction, economic development, safety, environmental quality, land use and accessibility.

Some of the larger projects included in the funding scenario released Tuesday include $144.9 million for Interstate 64 widening on the Hampton Roads Peninsula and $300 million toward expanding Interstate 66 outside the Beltway in Northern Virginia.

A full list of VDOT’s initial funding recommendations can be found here: http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/resources/2016/jan/pres/HouseBill2.pdf
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The scorecard can be seen here: http://www.virginiahb2.org/projects/default.asp

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