The region’s newest commuter lot will open Monday, Oct. 7, at University Boulevard near I-66 in Gainesville, according to the Virginia Department of Transportation.
The park and ride lot will open with more than 1,000 spaces, according to a news release, with commuter options that include carpool, vanpool or bus service while I-66 construction is underway. For now, drivers should access the lot from University Boulevard.
Other areas of the lot will remain under construction and are expected to open with about 1,000 additional parking spaces, as well as additional access from Route 29 and convenient access to and from the I-66 Express Lanes by December 2022.
“We’re pleased to see our Transform 66 Outside the Beltway Project private partner I-66 Express Mobility Partners and their design-builder FAM Construction successfully deliver these vital improvements and meet this interim project milestone,” said Susan Shaw, VDOT Northern Virginia megaprojects director.
The park and ride lot is located on University Boulevard between Route 29 and I-66 and includes bus bays with covered waiting areas, designated locations for carpools and slugging and covered bicycle racks.
OmniRide commuter bus service is scheduled to begin Oct. 28, with Gainesville-Pentagon express service being rerouted from its current location at the Limestone Commuter Lot. Buses run five trips each morning and evening, with half-price fares ($3.45 each way) being subsidized by the Transform 66 Project to encourage commuter alternatives to driving alone during construction. Additional bus service is expected to be added in the coming months. For more information about the bus service, including schedule information, please visit Omniride.com.
As part of the overall Transform 66 Outside the Beltway Express Lanes public-private partnership, more than 4,000 new park and ride spaces will open to commuters on I-66 by late 2022.
In addition to the University Boulevard Lot, a new commuter lot with 1,100 spaces is being built at Century Park Drive off Balls Ford Road in Manassas, and Fairfax County is designing and constructing a parking garage with 800+ spaces near Monument Drive and the Fairfax County Government Center using funds provided through the Transform 66 Project.
In December 2018, VDOT opened a 230-space parking lot near the I-66/Route 15 Interchange in Haymarket. New and expanded commuter bus service will be provided from these park and ride lots to major regional destinations including Arlington, Washington, D.C., Tysons, Reston and Merrifield.