2007 Session

Budget Bill - HB1650 (Chapter 847)

Department of Transportation

Item 442

Item 442

First Year - FY2007Second Year - FY2008
Ground Transportation Planning and Research (60200)$29,465,389
Ground Transportation System Planning (60201)FY2007 $23,429,708
FY2008 $23,429,708
Ground Transportation System Research (60202)FY2007 $3,185,096
FY2008 $3,185,096
Ground Transportation Program Management and Direction (60204)FY2007 $2,850,585
FY2008 $2,850,585
Fund Sources:  
Commonwealth TransportationFY2007 $29,465,389
FY2008 $29,465,389

Authority: Title 33.1, Code of Virginia.

A.1. Included in the amount for ground transportation system planning and research is no less than $4,000,000 the first year and no less than $4,000,000 the second year from the highway share of the Transportation Trust Fund for the planning and evaluation of options to address transportation needs.

2. In addition, the Commonwealth Transportation Board may approve the expenditures of up to $2,000,000 the first year and $1,000,000 the second year from the highway share of the Transportation Trust Fund for the following activities:

a. In the first year, $1,000,000 for the study of freight and the movement of goods throughout the Commonwealth.  The study, as outlined in the April 2005 VTrans 2025 Action Plan, shall review and assess the Commonwealth's freight infrastructure and needs. The study will be federally funded to the maximum extent possible.  Such study shall include development of a feasibility plan to define the conditions that would be necessary to divert the maximum amount feasible of the long-haul, through-truck freight traffic to intermodal rail in the Interstate Route 81 Corridor.

b. No less than $1,000,000 the first year and $1,000,000 the second year for the completion of advance activities, prior to the initiation of an individual project's design along existing highway corridors, to determine short-term and long-term improvements to the corridor.  Such activities shall consider safety, access management, alternative modes, operations, and infrastructure improvements.  Such funds shall be used, but are not limited to, the completion of activities prior to the initiation of an individual project's design or to benefit identification of needs throughout the state or the prioritization of those needs. For federally eligible activities, the activity or item shall be included in the Commonwealth Transportation Board's annual update of the Six-Year Improvement program so that (i) appropriate federal funds may be allocated and reimbursed for the activities and (ii) all requirements of the federal Statewide Transportation Improvement Program can be achieved.

3.a. The Office of Multimodalism shall recommend to the Commonwealth Transportation Board all allocations of such funds in this paragraph.  The planning and evaluation may be conducted or managed by the Department of Transportation, Department of Rail and Public Transportation, or another qualified entity selected and/or approved by the Commonwealth Transportation Board.

b. The Office shall work directly with affected Metropolitan Planning Organizations to develop and implement quantifiable and achievable goals relating to congestion reduction and safety, transit and HOV usage, job/housing ratios, job and housing access to transit and pedestrian facilities, air quality, and/or per-capita vehicle miles traveled.

c.  For allocation of funds under Paragraph A.1., the Office may give a higher priority for planning grants to those local governments that complete a build-out analysis of their comprehensive plans and zoning.  Such build-out analyses shall be shared with the regional planning district commission or metropolitan planning organization and the Department.

B.  The Commissioner shall be responsible for implementing the provisions of Chapter 527 (2006 Session) concerning the development of traffic impact analyses.  If resources are needed in addition to the appropriations included in this act, the Commissioner shall develop and submit a budget request for the 2007 Session to the Secretary of Transportation and the Chairmen of the Senate Finance and House Appropriations Committees.  The Director, Department of Planning and Budget, is authorized to increase the appropriation as needed and as supported by the anticipated collection of associated fees.

C. From funding appropriated in this item for the Virginia Transportation Research Council (VTRC), the VTRC, in conjunction with the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, shall design and implement a highway noise reduction experiment at the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute facilities in Blacksburg which utilizes dense conifers as the noise barrier and privacy screen portion of the experiment. Additionally, a short section of test roadway will be paved with new reduced noise asphalt to determine its efficacy and utility in reducing roadway noise. The Virginia Tech Forestry and Engineering Departments will provide assistance where appropriate.