When the federal government refused to issue a permit for the proposed Route 29 bypass, opponents in Charlottesville were relieved, but Virginia’s Secretary of Transportation says the idea is not dead.
Aubrey Layne is a businessman, but he served five years on the Commonwealth Transportation Board, and in that time he was convinced something had to be done about traffic congestion in Charlottesville.
“When I was a CTB member, I did vote for the bypass.”
But federal regulators nixed that plan, and local leaders decided instead to improve major intersections along Route 29 so traffic between Washington, Lynchburg and Danville could move more quickly through town. Now Secretary of Transportation, Layne says that will not be enough, and while federal regulators may not approve a brand new highway, some kind of bypass is in the cards.
“I don’t believe a green field project has a very good chance of getting accomplished, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have existing roads – whether it’s 250, 15, 64 around connecting that we can use to make a better bypass through that area.”