CTB approves name change for Jefferson Davis Highway in Arlington County

transportation road work

Credit: carterdayne

At its May meeting, the Commonwealth Transportation Board took action on the renaming of U.S. Route 1 and Virginia Route 110 within the County of Arlington from “Jefferson Davis Highway” to “Richmond Highway,” as requested by the county.

In a letter of support by Governor Ralph Northam for the renaming, read aloud at the meeting by Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine, Governor Northam said of the road’s current name, “While it is necessary for us to honestly discuss and interpret Virginia’s history, I feel strongly that commemorating the president of the Confederacy through the name of a major thoroughfare is not appropriate.” He continued, “[w]ith this change, the name of Route 1 will be Richmond Highway from Fairfax County to the Potomac River.”

The Board also took action to commemoratively name a bridge in Amherst County as the “Trooper Lucas B. Dowell Bridge” after the Virginia State Police trooper killed in the line of duty. The Amherst County Board of Supervisors presented a resolution to the CTB to name the bridge on U.S. 29 Business, South Main Street, over U.S. Route 29 in honor of Trooper Lucas B. Dowell, who served four years with the Virginia State Police.

“Trooper Dowell worked closely with VDOT crews in the Lynchburg District, and was a respected and committed partner within the Virginia State Police,” said Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine. “With this naming, we are honored to preserve his memory and legacy of bravery and public service for generations to come.”

During this meeting, the CTB took action to finalize SMART SCALE projects to be included in FY 2020-2025 Six-Year Improvement Program (SYIP). SMART SCALE is the data-driven process by which capital improvement, transportation demand management, or safety improvement projects are considered and scored, using weighted factors, including safety, congestion reduction, accessibility, land use (in larger regions), environmental quality, and economic development.

“SMART SCALE is a transparent process that takes the politics out of project selection, and ensures the most beneficial, cost-effective projects are prioritized,” said Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine.

“With SMART SCALE, the Commonwealth achieves greater efficiency in project development and funding through to construction,” said John Malbon, CTB member representing the Hampton Roads District. “The process allows Virginia and transportation partners predictability in planning for future investments and opportunities. We’re committed to continuing to refine the process for potential improvements as transportation needs evolve.”

The CTB will vote on the final SMART SCALE projects and the SYIP in June 2019. Projects selected will be fully funded through construction.

In this month’s meeting, the CTB approved two contracts totaling $88.9 million.

  • An $83.2 million contract was awarded to Allan Myers VA Inc. in Glen Allen to remove existing feeder roads on Laskin Road, replace the bridge over Linkhorn Bay, and widen First Colonial Road in the Hampton Roads District. The project will improve safety and add capacity on Laskin Road and First Colonial Road. Construction is planned in phases so traffic can be maintained during construction. Completion is expected in spring 2023.
  • A $5.7 million contract was awarded to Lee Hy Paving Corporation of Glen Allen for paving in the Culpeper District.

Appointed by the Governor, the 17-member CTB establishes the administrative policies for Virginia’s transportation system. The CTB allocates highway funding to specific projects, locates routes, and provides funding for airports, seaports, and public transportation.

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