Skip to main content

Henry County (VA) I-73 Alternative Route Environmental Study Complete - with positive reviews

VDOT has completed the Environmental Assessment for the Henry County I-73 Alternative Route.  This route was pushed forward by the Henry County Board of Supervisors in 2007, VDOT released a preliminary impact study of the route in 2009, and the Commonwealth Transportation Board directed VDOT to do an environmental assessment of the alternative routing that December.

Henry County Supervisors had urged the study and possible routing as it ran I-73 closer to Martinsville's eastern edge.  The HCBoS plan would run about two miles longer and appears to cost more.

The alternative routing would utilize five miles of the existing US 58 bypass to the south and east of Martinsville.  That portion of the freeway would need to be upgraded to Interstate standards.  The initial planned alternative ran I-73 further to the east and parallel to US 220 and the southeast corner of the US 58 Bypass.  Both routes would meet north of I-73's junction with VA 87 east of Ridgeway.  The map at right drawn by the Martinsville Bulletin shows the two of the possible I-73 Henry County Routes.  The HCBoS route is red, the original VDOT proposal is in grey.  To my knowledge, this is the first clue of how I-73 will be routed south of Roanoke.

There is a third possible alternative route.  A modified version of the Henry County Alternative would eliminate two grade separations with the Norfolk Southern Railway and be about two tenths of a mile shorter.

Henry County officials are pleased with the results of the study, and have been touting the minimal impact to Fisher Farm Park in Ridgeway.  However, Virginians for Appropriate Roads (VAR) will be sure to have a voice in the matter once the official study is released and open for public comment.    VAR is opposed to any new construction of Interstate 73, preferring upgrades to existing US 220.   As part of their decision to drop an appeal on the planning process for I-73, VAR has the ability to challenge any future studies for I-73 "...that if a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement is done for the project, Virginians for Appropriate Roads may raise road improvements and access management alternatives with respect to U.S. 220 in any judicial review challenge that the group might bring..."

VDOT has announced a open forum public hearing on the Henry County Alternative Route Study at the end of the month.  It will be held Tuesday, March 29 from 4-6 PM at the Laurel Park Middle School - 280 Laurel Park Ave. - in Martinsville.

Story Links:
I-73 assessment complete ---Martinsville Bulletin
I-73 study results are praised ---Martinsville Bulletin

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The history of US Route 80 and Interstate 8 in California

The historic corridor of US Route 80 and Interstate 8 through the borderlands of southern California share a largely mutual history.  Both highways originated in the city of San Diego and departed the state at the Colorado River into Yuma, Arizona.  Both highways share numerous famous geographical components such as the Mountain Springs Grade and Algodones Sand Dunes.  This article serves as a comprehensive history of the combined US Route 80/Interstate 8 corridor in California from the tolled stage route era of the nineteenth century to the development of the modern freeway.   The blog cover photo features US Route 80 along the Mountains Springs Grade through In-Ko-Pah Gorge during late 1920s.  This photo is part of the Caltrans McCurry Collection. Part 1; the history of US Route 80 and Interstate 8 in California US Route 80 and Interstate 8 in California share a largely mutual history.  The backstory of both highways is tied heavily to the corridors of the Old Spanish Trail, Legisl

The Central Freeway of San Francisco (US Route 101)

The Central Freeway is a 1.2-mile elevated limited access corridor in the city of San Francisco.  As presently configured the Central Freeway connects from the end of the Bayshore Freeway to Market Street.  The Central Freeway carries the mainline of northbound US Route 101 from the Bayshore Freeway to Mission Street. The Central Freeway has origins with the establishment of Legislative Route Number 223 and is heavily tied to the history of the once proposed Panhandle Freeway.  The Central Freeway between the Bayshore Freeway and Mission Street was completed during 1955.  The corridor was extended to a one-way couplet located at Turk Street and Golden Gate Avenue in 1959 which served to connect US Route 101 to Van Ness Avenue.  The Central Freeway was damaged by the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake and has since been truncated to Market Street.   The Central Freeway as pictured on the blog cover was featured in the May/June 1959 California Highways & Public Works.  The scan below is fro

The Midway Palm and Pine of US Route 99

Along modern day California State Route 99 south of Avenue 11 just outside the City limits of Madera one can find the Midway Palm and Pine in the center median of the freeway.  The Midway Palm and Pine denotes the halfway point between the Mexican Border and Oregon State Line on what was US Route 99.  The Midway Palm is intended to represent Southern California whereas the Midway Pine is intended to represent Northern California.  Pictured above the Midway Palm and Pine can be seen from the northbound lanes of the California State Route 99 Freeway.   This blog is part of the larger Gribblenation US Route 99 Page.  For more information pertaining to the other various segments of US Route 99 and it's three-digit child routes check out the link the below. Gribblenation US Route 99 Page The history of the Midway Palm and Pine The true timeframe for when the Midway Palm and Pine (originally a Deadora Cedar Tree) were planted is unknown.  In fact, the origin of the Midway Palm and Pine w