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The Authority Report

Authority Meeting Highlights

December 18, 2020

As the end of 2020 is rapidly approaching, the Authority reconvened electronically last evening for the last time this year. While there was a lot to cover, we're bringing you the highlights to keep you in the know. The Authority began the evening with the adoption of a resolution on finding the need to conduct the business meeting by electronic communication means during Governor Northam's declared State of Emergency during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Susan Shaw, Northern Virginia Megaprojects Director, Virginia Department of Transportation, returned last evening to provide the Authority an annual update on the I-66 Outside the Beltway Concession Fee Projects. Projects funded with the Concession Fee must move more people, enhance transportation connectivity, improve transit service, reduce roadway congestion, and increase travel options.

Status updates on these Concession Fee Projects covered several categories, including: 1) Projects within Transform I-66 Project Construction Limits; 2) Transit Improvement Projects; 3) Pedestrian Improvement Projects; and 4) Roadway Projects. 

Transform I-66 Outside the Beltway Fall 2020 Construction Progress highlights, included:

  • New Poplar Tree Road Bridge over Route 28: Opened in late November 2020. The new bridge includes a shared-use path connecting to the new E.C. Lawrence Park access road, and connections on both sides of Route 28.
  • New Vaden Drive Bridge over I-66: Opened in late November 2020. Provides access to the Vienna Fairfax/GMU Metrorail Station. The new, wider bridge will include a shared-use path opening in late 2020, and ramps to and from the west that will connect to the I-66 Express Lanes.
  • Last traffic signal on the Route 28 corridor: Removed in November 2020. Represents a milestone in providing smoother and safer travel for drivers, and concluding a years-long effort to make Route 28 ‘signal free’ from Route 7 in Loudoun County all the way to the Route 29 interchange in Fairfax County.

Review the entire Annual Update on I-66 Outside the Beltway Concession Fee Projects, here.

Next, Tracy Baynard, McGuireWoods Consulting, LLC, presented the Draft NVTA 2021 State and Federal Legislative Program, as recommended by the Governance and Personnel Committee (GPC). 

The Authority has three legislative priorities have been developed: 1) Restore Long Term Funding to the Authority; 2) Protect Dedicated Revenue and Powers of the Authority; and 3) Support Additional Flexibility for Virtual Meetings of Public Bodies. 


Photo Courtesy of VRE

Northern Virginia’s transit agencies and WMATA continue to provide essential services serving our region and the federal government. Earlier federal COVID-19 relief enabled these systems to operate safely and serve first responders, healthcare workers and essential employees across the National Capital Region. Now, these transit agencies need additional funding to avoid staff layoffs and service reductions that would cripple our region’s ability to quickly recover from the economic downturn. The Federal agency workforce depends on WMATA service to serve the nation and further federal aid is paramount.

The Authority unanimously adopted the NVTA 2021 Legislative Program, with requested removal of Section A.1.c. ("Transit Capital Funding"). The full Draft 2021 Legislative Program and a one-page highlight summary can be viewed here.

Additionally, the Authority is planning to update its Economic Impact Analysis, which gives an overview of how Authority-funded projects are impacting the economy. 


Previous analysis conducted by Chmura Economics & Analytics, LLC

Upon the NVTA Finance Committee recommendation, the Authority approved the proposed Economic Impact Analysis Contract with Chmura Economics & Analytics, LLC, which conducted the most recent of two previous analyses.

The Authority is currently updating TransAction, the long-range transportation plan for Northern Virginia. Given that TransAction is updated on a five-year cycle, it is appropriate to review the TransAction vision statement now to ensure it continues to reflect the Authority’s aspirations for the regional transportation system over the coming decades.

The revised statement focuses on mobility, accessibility, and resilience, while embracing core values of safety, equity, and sustainability. The Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), the Planning Coordination Advisory Committee (PCAC) and the Planning and Programming Committee (PPC), each discussed the revised vision statement at their respective meetings in November. Each committee unanimously recommended that the Authority approve the revised vision statement.

Since the vision statement will be used to develop the goals, objectives, and performance measures that will guide the Plan, the Authority unanimously approved the revised TransAction Vision Statement last evening:

The Authority’s Nominating Committee, Ann Wheeler, Chair, Prince William County, and Derrick Wood, Mayor, Town of Dumfriesrecommended that Phyllis Randall, Chair, Loudoun Countycontinue to serve as Chair of the Authority for 2021, and David Snyder, Council Member, City of Falls Church, serve as Vice Chair. The Authority will take action on the Nominating Committee’s recommendation during next month’s organizational meeting.

We'd also like to offer our congratulations to Commonwealth Transportation Board Member, Mary Hynes, and citizen member, Jim Kolb, for once again being appointed by Governor Northam to serve on the Authority for another term. 
 

The meeting wrapped up last evening with a special tribute to the Authority's last original member, City of Manassas Mayor and Authority Vice Chair, Hal Parrish, who is retiring at the end of the month after his 27 years of public service to the City, and 18 years of service on the Authority.

Mayor Derrick Wood, the Authority's Town Representative, was also recognized for his representation and engagement on the Authority

We cannot thank them enough for their leadership and dedication to the Authority and region.

Couldn't tune in last night? The full archived live-stream can be viewed on our YouTube Channel

Click here to see the December Authority Meeting Agenda, topics discussed, and meeting materials.

Recommended 2021 Authority Meeting Schedule
 
As the region's multimodal transportation planning, programming and funding entity, it is vitally important to allow sufficient planning time for the Authority to conduct its business meetings.

Consistent with prior practice, the Authority will continue to meet on the second Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m. for Calendar Year 2021, as indicated below, with noted exceptions:
  • January 14, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • February 11, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • March 11, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • April 8, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • May 13, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • June 10, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • July 8, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • August - **No Meeting, unless special circumstances require**
  • September 9, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • October 14, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
  • November 18, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. – **Date changed due to Veterans Day**
  • December 9, 2021 at 6:00 p.m. - **Time changed to avoid potential regional meeting conflicts**
UPCOMING MEETINGS and EVENTS
 
Authority Meeting *
January 14, 2021, 7:00 p.m. | Virtual: NVTA's YouTube Channel
**Annual Organizational Meeting**
***
Transportation Technology Committee
January 13, 2021, 8:30 a.m. | Virtual: NVTA's YouTube Channel

Governance and Personnel Committee
January 14, 2021, 5:30 p.m. | Virtual: NVTA's YouTube Channel

Finance Committee Meeting
January 21, 2021, 1:00 p.m. | Virtual: NVTA's YouTube Channel

Planning Coordination Advisory Committee
Next Meeting TBA | Virtual: NVTA's YouTube Channel

Technical Advisory Committee
Next Meeting TBA | Virtual: NVTA's YouTube Channel

Planning and Programming Committee
Next Meeting TBA | Virtual: NVTA's YouTube Channel
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