Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) wants input on the newest version of design plans for widening Interstate 81 through Harrisonburg from mile marker 242 to 248. That’s about a mile south of Exit 243, the Rt 11 Main Street interchange, to about a mile north of exit 247, the Rt 33 East Market Street interchange.
You might remember that back in September, VDOT asked for input on preliminary design plans. Since then they’ve conducted a noise study and added recommendations for sound barriers along portions of the route (preview the design boards and simulated flyover videos at the bottom of this page).
Our thoughts on the project remain the same:
– We applaud VDOT for keeping the project largely within the existing right-of-way, and leaving the natural resources, businesses and residences along the corridor as unaffected as possible.
– We support the roundabout at the bridge near Pleasant Valley Elementary School as it is a good alternative to a traffic light. Roundabouts are proven solutions to slow traffic down at all times of day (an important feature near a school!), and efficiently handle peaks of traffic.
– The project ties in with the changes at the Route 33 East Market Street interchange that were vetted back in 2019. If you remember, we successfully advocated that the project include a multi-use trail for pedestrian access and safety across the bridge.
VDOT will host an informational meeting and accept comments on the design Tuesday, June 28, 2022, 4-7 p.m. at Pleasant Valley Elementary School, 215 Pleasant Valley Road Harrisonburg, VA 22801. (map)
Please stop by and let VDOT know your experience traveling this section of I-81 and your view on the near-final proposal. If you can’t make the meeting, you can review the design here and even watch an informational video or listen to a podcast about the project and submit comments by July 8, 2022 via the webform here.