VDOT Secondary Roads Study: Will State Roads Become Local Again?

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At the end of June, the Virginia Secretary of Transportation announced a new study dated June 16, 2011 that says something we all have known for a decade or more — the state has no funds to adequately maintain our roads, let alone construct new ones, and that our roads and bridges are in a state of decay. One of the many impacts of this was the subject of my previous blog post entitled “Virginia Infrastructure Needs Hurt Economic Development.”

The study is getting quite a buzz in Hampton Roads and in Northern Virginia, as it should all across the state.

The study makes no recommendations, but strongly suggests that devolution — handing off the secondary road dilemma to local governments — may be in our near future. The study draws a roadmap (sorry for the pun) for the Commonwealth to address the problem of lack of maintenance and construction of secondary roads. Of course, given the fact that the study finds (i) the current administrative arrangement is “appropriate,” (ii) the current state funding is resulting in a “deteriorating” secondary road system, and (iii) the current local options for assuming road maintenance are not attracting any takers, it is hard to see how the status quo options are real options at all. This leaves devolution in some form as the most likely path forward.

Please see full article below for more information.

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