|According to Leesburg Today, Gov. McAuliffe appears to be leaning towards support for the “Bi-County Parkway” project.
This is misguided, and also kind of strange to be blunt, on a number of levels. With regard to the “strange” part, recall that last October, the McAuliffe campaign was bashing Ken Cuccinelli for “pop[ping] a U-Turn” on the project, while McAuliffe “waivered” on the question, with Derek McGinty of WUSA asking McAuliffe at a debate in August, “Don’t you owe it to the voters to take an actual position on the Bi-County Parkway?” McAuliffe’s response at that time was that “I do not make decisions nor will I make decisions until I have all the facts in front of me.” And now?Well, now Terry McAuliffe has been Governor of Virginia for 6 months, and he appears to be leaning towards support for the Bi-County Parkway. It true, that would be a big mistake, for all the reasons the Coalition for Smarter Growth lists.
|lowkell :: Gov. McAuliffe Needs to Resist Pressure From Usual Suspects and Reject Bi-County Parkway|
The thing is, Gov. McAuliffe has generally been strong on smart growth so far, deserving major kudos for – as the Coalition for Smarter Growth statement notes – putting the brakes on the 460 boondoggle/scandal, as well as for his actions to stop the destructive, wasteful Charlottesville Bypass (Route 29) project. On the latter project, Gov. McAuliffe appointed a Route 29 task force which adopted many of the alternatives the smart growth community and the local community has long promoted (note: I’m told that “Places 29” was fully vetted and approved years ago, with local residents just insisting on implementation of longstanding and viable options), and these alternatives were voted into the 6-year plan on Wednesday. For more on this, see thePlaces29 plan.Given all this, why would Gov. McAuliffe lean towards support for the Bi-County sprawl road, particularly given: a) strong local opposition in Prince William County; b) Virginia’s budget problems (just what we need, another road to spend large amounts of money on both to build AND to maintain for decades); and c) not to mention the urgent need for environmental reasons (global warming, anyone?) to move AWAY from fossil fuels ASAP, not lock in more fossil-fuel-reliant/intensive infrastructure for decades to come? My understanding is that Gov. McAuliffe’s being pressured by the usual suspects — MWAA, the Loudoun Chamber of Commerce, sprawl developers (as opposed to responsible developers who are committed to smart growth and transit-oriented development), etc. – who have emphasized unsubstantiated claims that Dulles Airport could claim a big share of East Coast air cargo, if only we do things like build this wasteful sprawl road. Don’t think so. Gov. McAuliffe: please protect our tax dollars and the environment by rejecting this road to nowhere. Thanks.
P.S. Also, it’s clear after his slam-down of Virginia Republicans today that Gov. McAuliffe has big-time cojones; he can certainly handle these sprawl developers.
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Photo courtesy of Blue Virginia.