Rt. 17 traffic input wanted

Published 9:02 pm Tuesday, January 14, 2020

By Diana McFarland


Motorists bedeviled by traffic snarls and stoplights along Route 17 now have an opportunity to express their opinion to the state agency that oversees possible  improvements to that corridor — VDOT. 

The Virginia Department of Transportation is conducting a study to look at possible safety and operational improvements for 2.6 miles of Route 17, Carrollton Boulevard, between Channell Way/Deep Bottom Drive and the James River Bridge in Isle of Wight County.

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Improvements being considered include improving traffic signal timing, modifying intersections, managing roadway access, bike and pedestrian trails and innovative intersections, according to VDOT. {mprestriction ids=”1,2,3,4,5,6″}

As part of the study, VDOT is offering an online survey, or written comments can be submitted (see box, xxx). The study is expected to be finalized in the spring. A public meeting schedule will be developed to inform residents about the study and receive feedback that can be incorporated into recommendations. 

Interestingly, East West Partners has offered to make some intersection improvements along that corridor to sweeten its application for 340 age-restricted units, called South Harbor, proposed for property located behind Bojangles along Route 17. The Board of Supervisors, having held a public hearing in November, is scheduled to reconsider the proposal on Thursday. 

South Harbor is just one of numerous developments already approved or in the works between the James River Bridge and Smithfield. Northern Suffolk is also growing, and is another contributor to the traffic increase. 

Already, the amount of traffic has grown by 1,000 cars on Carrollton Boulevard from the Bartlett intersection from 2005 to 2018, according to VDOT traffic data. 

The study area averages 29,000 vehicles a day, according to VDOT. 

Those wanting more information on possible innovative intersections can visit http://www.virginiadot.org/innovativeintersections/ {/mprestriction}