Governor McDonnell announces plans for I-95 express lanes
The ride on I-95 will soon get a lot easier for thousands of commuters.
Tuesday, Governor Bob McDonnell announced plans to add extra lanes to the heavily traveled interstate. The "hot lanes" will be constructed on each side of I-95, stretching from Stafford to Fairfax County.
Starting from Garrisonville Road in Stafford County to Edsall Road in Fairfax County, the lanes will be 29 miles long.
"In partnering with the private sector, VDOT is leveraging nearly $1 billion dollars in congestion relief for the heavily traveled Northern Virginia region. Virginia is taking bold action to move more people with fewer cars by giving them more transportation choices that will save time and money, and improve the environment," McDonnell said in a press release.
For residents used to sitting in the congestion, it is welcomed news.
Pedro Ascencio uses I-95 every day from D.C. to Woodbridge for work. Traveling one way, he says, can take two and a half hours.
"It's real bad, real bad," he said.
He hopes the new lanes will help him get home to his family sooner.
The $925 million project will cover one of the most congested parts of the region.
But there are some restrictions. Drivers using the express lanes must have three people in their vehicle or pay $5 during rush hour.
"Everybody who drives that road in the morning knows we need improvements there, and this is a step forward," McDonnell said.
Construction will begin next week and conclude by late 2014. The project will create 8,000 temporary jobs.