HD44 - VTrans 2025: Virginia's Statewide Multimodal Long-Range Transportation Plan (Phase Three)

Executive Summary:
[For reference purposes: Phase One--HD 10, 2003; Phase Two--HD 38, 2003]

The entire executive summary could not be included due to space limitation.

Virginians are grappling with increased congestion on the roads, under-funded transit systems, missed opportunities for rail, and inadequate resources to meet infrastructure needs. In this stressed environment, the General Assembly mandated development of a comprehensive long-range multimodal plan that considered projects and policies that “promote economic development, intermodal connectivity, environmental quality, accessibility for people and freight, and transportation safety.” The long-range plan was to review revenue sources and availability and recommend improvements in the multimodal transportation system to meet Virginia’s long-term needs.

Building on recent successes in restoring accountability and instituting sound business practices in transportation agencies, Virginia’s long-range transportation plan, called VTrans2025, is a blueprint for shaping the transportation future. It establishes a commonly held vision, goals, and objectives to guide and direct decision-making across transportation modes. It identifies the need for more resources to achieve the vision and provides a framework for multimodal investments.

A Policy Committee, composed of the heads of each transportation agency and members from each of the agency boards, guided the work of a Technical Committee, made up of experts from each of the agencies, as well as the Federal Highway Administration and the state’s Planning District Commissions. Stakeholder groups and the public were invited to participate in developing the plan, and a series of 40 forums and focus groups were held around the state. Values and perspectives were obtained from these meetings and a statistically valid telephone survey was performed to determine the opinions of Virginians.

Vision for the Future of Transportation

Participants in the planning process said they wanted a safe, efficient, and modern network of transportation facilities and services that provided reliable travel for residents, visitors, and businesses; encouraged economic development; respected the environment; and, enhanced the quality of life in Virginia. They believed investments needed to be strategic, focusing on relieving congested conditions and improving connectivity and mode linkages. The public also expected full accountability and prudent and efficient use of taxpayer dollars.

Safety was a top concern and would not be traded-off for any other goal. Furthermore, Virginians did not want to sacrifice the environment for transportation improvements. Yet, congestion was a major concern, particularly in urban areas, where more transportation choices, non-highway alternatives, and increased capacity were considered solutions to congested highways.

Virginians wanted travel modes to be better connected, trips to be seamless, and linkages between existing systems and services to be improved. There was a strong interest in providing more balance in planning and investing across transportation modes. Virginians supported increasing investment in transportation, as long as they had greater involvement in transportation planning and assurances that revenues raised for transportation would be used only for transportation purposes.