Prince William County residents will have a chance next month to weigh in on a $300 million project to improve commuter traffic in the Va. Route 28 corridor. Transportation officials recommend constructing a bypass, which could require the purchase of up to 70 homes for right of way.
The Prince William Board of County Supervisors voted 7-0 on Tuesday to schedule a public hearing in July for the proposed project. Supervisor Pete Candland, R-Gainesville, was absent from the meeting.
Transportation Director Ric Canizales told the board that staff supports a bypass project that would extend Godwin Drive as a four-lane divided road with a shared-use path. The bypass would run parallel to Flat Branch and Bull Run streams and connect with Route 28 at an intersection north of Bull Run stream, according to the county.
An environmental study is still in progress on whether to widen Route 28 or select one of two possible bypass routes.
While the environmental study is not yet complete, its technical and executive committees — which include 67 staff, leaders and elected officials at federal, state, regional and local levels — have recommended the bypass route, according to the county.
The bypass option was “determined to have the lowest cost, highest traffic impacts, lowest impacts to existing development and communities, and low impact to the environment,” according to the county.
At a public meeting in October, officials said adding two lanes to Route 28 would impact about 90 businesses due to right of way acquisition while selecting either of two proposed routes for a four-lane bypass would require the purchase of up to 70 homes.
At that time, Canizales said the proposed bypass options would have a larger impact on commuter traffic than widening the existing road. All three projects are estimated to cost about $300 million.
Transportation officials have long sought ways to improve the busy commuter route between Manassas and Centreville. More than 57,000 vehicles travel daily on Va. 28, according to the Route 28 Corridor Feasibility Study released in December 2017.
County voters approved a $355 million transportation bond referendum in November, which includes $200 million for the Route 28 project. The project also has an $98.4 million in funding from the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority and Coles District proffer funds provided by developers to address transportation needs.
For more information, visit route28study.com.