Conference Interactive Program
To view the 2013 Annual Meeting Interactive Program
TRB 91st Annual Meeting (January 22-26, 2012)
Transportation Revenue and Finance Showcase
Jan 23 2012 2:00PM- 3:45PM
Hilton, International Center
Nonpublic Funding Options Available to Virginia Department of Transportation for Interstate Safety Rest Areas (12-3117)
In 2009, 19 Virginia interstate safety rest areas (SRAs) were closed for a savings of approximately $9 million per year for the Virginia Department of Transportation. These closures were opposed by those concerned with the possible effects on traveler safety, tourism dollars, and Virginia’s Commonwealth’s business reputation. Virginia’s SRAs were reopened in the spring of 2010, but not before the Virginia General Assembly passed House Joint Resolution No. 126 and Senate Joint Resolution No. 99 in early 2010 to investigate new and feasible nonpublic funding options for the continued operation of Virginia’s SRAs. Federal law prohibits federal-aid highways from offering any type of commerce for “serving motor vehicle users” at SRAs located on the interstate highway system right of way unless the establishment was in existence prior to 1960 and is owned by a state (23 U.S.C. § 111). Accordingly, commercial enterprises in Virginia and elsewhere have located at interstate interchanges, and they consistently oppose changes to the aforementioned federal code. The nonpublic funding options presented in this report were identified through a review of state and federal law, surveys of Virginia rest area users, interviews with industry groups, an assessment of initiatives by state departments of transportation for interstate SRA funding, and questionnaires distributed to these state agencies. In the short term, simple options include the expansion of vending items, indoor advertising, and facility sponsorship and complex options include relocated facilities under regional management and commercial facilities outside the interstate highway right of way. In the long term, modification of the provisions of 23 U.S.C. § 111 (Agreements relating to use of and access to rights-of-way-- Interstate System) or the repeal of 23 U.S.C. § 301 (Freedom from tolls), would allow states additional nonpublic funding for interstate SRAs.
Fitch, Michael , Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation and Research
Moruza, Audrey K., Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation and Research
Perfater, Michael A., Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation and Research
Transportation Research Board. 500 Fifth St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
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