Scott Shenk writes about transportation issues affecting Fredericksburg-area residents.
Feds give Virginia millions to help pay for roads damaged during fall storms
Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee did a number on the region’s roads in the fall, and the ensuing fixes drained millions from the Virginia Department of Transportation’s maintenance budget.
But, in an expected move, the Federal Highway Administration this week sent millions to Virginia as part of a nationwide $1.585 billion package to pay for the costs of fixing roads and bridges damaged by natural disasters.
Virginia’s portion of the package is $19 million.
VDOT has estimated the damage caused by the storms in its 14-county Fredericksburg District at about $4 million. Statewide damage was $42 million.
Just how much of the funds the Fredericksburg district will get remains unclear, said Virginia Department of Transportation spokeswoman Kelly Hannon.
“Right now, it’s just coming to Virginia,” she said.
Most of the damage to roads in VDOT’s Fredericksburg district was spread out over Westmoreland and Caroline counties. But there was also road damage in Spotsylvania, Essex, King & Queen and King William counties.
Among the Fredericksburg area’s washouts was Windsor Drive, a Spotsylvania street used by residents of three neighborhoods.
So far, crews have shored up the huge gully that opened after the storms, and the new 10- by 8-foot concrete box culvert has arrived.
VDOT initially expected the repair work to be completed in December, but the weather and contractor schedules have pushed the expected completion date back to early February.
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