Senators Jim Webb and Mark R. Warner and Representatives Jim Moran and Gerry Connolly today applauded the Defense Department's release of $180 million in funding for a project to widen Route 1 through Ft. Belvoir. The funding now goes to the Federal Highway Administration to begin construction on transportation improvements that will accommodate increased traffic related to BRAC 2005 relocations.
The $180 million was awarded in November; part of a $300 million appropriation secured by the Maryland and Virginia delegations for BRAC-related transportation improvements across the country.
"This investment is critical to mitigating traffic congestion as a result of the BRAC consolidation and is an important step towards improving Northern Virginia's strained transportation infrastructure," said Senator Webb. "Congressman Moran is to be commended for his leadership in making this project a reality."
"This is an important milestone in our efforts to move forward on improvements to the I95 and Route 1 corridor to support the Fort Belvoir expansion," Sen. Mark R. Warner said. "Congestion mitigation is critically important to commuters, businesses and homeowners near Belvoir, and I am very pleased the delegation was able to successfully work together on both sides of the Capitol to get this done."
"This is one of the final steps to making BRAC work in southern Fairfax County. The funded improvements will greatly enhance access to Fort Belvoir and make it better for local drivers who travel near the Post daily," Rep. Connolly said. "It is the result of ongoing collaboration between our members of Congress, local leaders and the Pentagon to mitigate the massive military relocations as a result of BRAC. We can look forward to breaking ground on this project next year."
"Today's transfer demonstrates the Defense Department's continued commitment to Ft. Belvoir and the communities impacted by the BRAC relocation," said Rep. Moran. "The new state of the art hospital at Ft. Belvoir will bring an influx of cars onto an already crowded stretch of road. I am pleased to see this critical project moving forward and on schedule."
BRAC relocations and the construction of the new Ft. Belvoir Community Hospital, which opened in November 2011, are expected to bring more than 11,000 new DoD employees and 574,000 annual hospital patients onto Route 1. Today's funding will be used to widen -- from four to six lanes -- 3.5 miles of U.S. Route 1 from Telegraph Road north to Mount Vernon Memorial Highway. The project will improve access to Fort Belvoir at Tully Gate and Pence Gate, which serve as the main access points to the new Fort Belvoir Community Hospital and include new bike lanes, pedestrian facilities, drainage and utility improvements.