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Public comment sought on VDOT survey for Tazewell, Va.

Feb. 13—By GREG JORDAN

Bluefield Daily Telegraph

TAZEWELL, Va. — A Virginia Department of Transportation study aimed at making roadways in Tazewell County's Route 19 and Route 460 corridor safer started asking Monday for citizens to share their ideas and comments.

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is seeking feedback on two Project Pipeline transportation studies assessing potential safety improvements in Tazewell and Lee counties. The surveys are part of a study that began last year, according to a VDOT announcement. Elements of the studies include improving roadway safety and preserving capacity of the corridor.

Project Pipeline is a planning program for identifying cost-effective solutions for Virginia's transportation needs. Through this process, projects and solutions may be considered for funding through revenue sharing, interstate funding and other funding sources.

Michelle Earl, VDOT's Bristol District communications manager, said the Project Pipeline study in Tazewell County focuses on improving safety on the county's Route 19 and Route 460 corridor. Information gathered by the survey can be used to help apply for grants and other funding.

VDOT is inviting residents and motorists to learn more and take an online survey which started Monday and continues until Feb. 25. Community input received through this survey will help the study team identify existing issues along the study corridor and develop recommendations for potential improvements that will be evaluated and presented during the next phase of the study, according to VDOT.

Tazewell County residents wanting to learn more about the Project Pipeline program and how it benefits localities can go to:

BR-23-09: US 19/460 (Trail of the Lonesome Pine) (vaprojectpipeline.org)

And the link to the survey is at Route 19/460 (Tazewell County) Study Alternatives (BR-23-09) — PublicInput, Earl said.

Comments can also be sent to bristolinfo@vdot.virginia.gov or to Blake Ailor at Blake.Ailor@vdot.virginia.gov.

Responses can also mailed to Blake Ailor, Bristol District Planner, Virginia Department of Transportation, 2111 Bonham Road, Bristol, VA 24201. The deadline for comments is Feb. 25.

This study is expected to be complete in summer 2024; it does not set construction dates for any improvements, VDOT officials said.

The final plan will provide a multimodal investment strategy that can be used to seek and secure funding through programs including Smart Scale, revenue sharing, interstate funding, and others.

— Contact Greg Jordan at gjordan@bdtonline.com