Six-year transportation funding plan up 54 percent

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Virginia’s Commonwealth Transportation Board has approved a $17.6 billion, six-year transportation improvement plan bulked with new revenues from this year’s landmark transportation bill.

The plan reflects a 54 percent increase over last year’s six-year program. It distributes funding for highway, road and bridge projects, as well as rail, transit, bicycle, pedestrian and other transportation improvements.

Most of the new funding will be used to rebuild aging pavements and bridges and to accelerate work on high priority projects. The funding breakdown is:

·    Highways and bridges: $11.5 billion ($2.5 billion increase)
·    Rail and public transportation: $2.9 billion ($500 million increase)
·    Hampton Roads transportation fund: $1.3 billion (new money)

The transportation law also created a specific revenue source for Northern Virginia, which is not reflected in the six-year plan because it is allocated through the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority. That is expected to be $1.9 billion over six years.

The board also approved a $5.2 billion transportation budget for fiscal year 2014, up 11.1 percent over last year. That includes $4.6 billion for the Virginia Department of Transportation, $504 million for the Department of Rail and Public Transportation and $62.6 million for airports and the Port of Virginia.

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