Daily News Briefs, February 2, 2024

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Virginia Bill To Transfer Dulles Greenway Oversight Passes Committee

Loudoun Times-Mirror reports, legislation sponsored by State Delegate David Reid (D-28) that would transfer oversight of the Dulles Greenway from Virginia’s State Corporation Commission (SCC) to VDOT pursuant to the Public-Private Transportation Act (PPTA) passed the House Transportation Committee yesterday on a party-line vote of 10-9. House Bill 1391 is expected to get a floor vote in the House sometime next week. Similar legislation sponsored by Reid has been unsuccessful in the past even with the support of both the Ralph Northam and Glenn Youngkin administrations. Reid argues that consistent increases in Greenway tolls, over which SCC has presided for 28 years, prove that it’s not the regulatory body to reign in the rates. But county officials continue to voice concern over a regulatory structure that gives them only consultative input into VDOT’s negotiations with Greenway operator Toll Road Investors Partnership II (TRIP II), an Atlas Arteria subsidiary. The article notes that TRIP II supports Reid’s bill, and it also explains how Loudoun County would stand to lose about $1.9 million in annual real estate taxes if the Greenway were regulated under the PPTA. An amendment to the original version of Reid’s bill directs the state to “‘explore ways to keep the county’s finances whole,’ Reid said in a Feb. 1 statement.”

LoudounNow also covers this story.

Atlas Arteria (formerly Macquarie Atlas Roads) Dulles Greenway Issues of Law Virginia Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Washington (DC) Metro Region


Minnesota DOT And University Test Unique Solar Snow Fence

Minnesota Public Radio reports on Minnesota DOT’s testing of a unique snow fence that doubles as an electricity-generator. Fencing helps MnDOT keep some highways open during the depth of winter when blowing snow tends to create obstructive drifts of up to 10 feet. Most of the department’s snow fences are constructed of “flexible composite material designed to stop snow,” but a 100-foot section now undergoing testing on US 10 outside Moorhead instead uses narrow solar panels as rails. The North Dakota State University researchers who developed the fence and oversee the test for MnDOT say it’s an effective barrier that also generates 20 to 30 kilowatts of electricity per hour, per day, which is approximately enough to supply one US household’s needs. However, the energy currently produced remains on-site to power heated pads that melt accumulated snow and prevent drifts forming. The MnDOT study will end in June and further research — into crash safety, distribution or sale of generated electricity, and economic viability — will be needed, but department staff believe initial findings indicate a full-scale deployment of solar snow fencing has promise.

Highway and Bridge Maintenance Highway and Bridge Safety (Including COVID-19 Impacts) Minnesota Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) (MnPASS) Transportation and Infrastructure Research & Development


Explore FDOT's I-4 Express With A Traffic Reporter

WKMG traffic reporter Steven Montiero (“Trooper Steve”) presents a half-hour video tour of FDOT’s I-4 Express facility in metro Orlando. The segment is a response to a viewer question about signage, but Montiero makes a variety of observations and comments about I-4 and the express lanes as he navigates morning peak-period traffic. The video was recorded Monday, January 29.

Express Lanes Florida Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Highway and Bridge Safety (Including COVID-19 Impacts) I-4 Express (Orlando FL) I-4 Ultimate Improvement Programs (FL) Orange County FL Metro Area (Orlando)


These are just some of the toll industry developments TRN is following.

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