Public-Private Partnership Policy Casebook/460

SummaryEdit

Since 2000, the Commonwealth of Virginia has prioritized a new highway between Suffolk and Petersburg adjacent to the existing U.S. Route 460 corridor. In 2012, Virginia signed an agreement with U.S. Mobility Partners to design and construct a 56 mile road with a toll element. The preferred alternative was selected based on the June 2008 NEPA Final Environmental Impact Statement. In March 2014, the Commonwealth of Virginia halted the project due to environmental wetland concerns raised by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The agreement had already provided over $280 million to the contractor without a construction start. This case study will examine the history, benefits, environmental concerns, Public-Private Partnership solicitation, and procurement of this complex project.

Annotated List of ActorsEdit

  • Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT): Responsible for building, maintaining and operating the Commonwealth of Virginia's roads, bridges and tunnels.[1] Lead state agency responsible for the Virginia 460 project.
  • Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia – Established to issue GARVEE ”toll revenue bonds” and to oversee the construction project, and then to operate the toll collection system for a period of 40 years.
  • Federal Highway Administration (FWHA): Supports state and local governments in the design, construction, and maintenance of the Nation’s highway system. [2] Issues a Record of Decision, that identifies the selected alternative from the environmental impact statement (EIS) which environmentally preferable alternative, to avoid, minimize, and compensate for environmental impacts.
  • Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB): Appointed by the governor, the CTB establishes the administrative policies for Virginia's transportation system. The CTB allocates highway funding to specific projects, locates routes and provides funding for airports, seaports and public transportation. [3]
  • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE): Responsible for issuing permits for any work, including construction and dredging, in the Nation's navigable waters [4]
  • Virginia Port Authority: Responsible for performing any act of function which may be useful in developing, improving or increasing the commerce of the port of the Commonwealth [5]
  • Virginia Office of Transportation Public-Private Partnerships: Responsible for developing, implementing and administering the procurement of P3 projects across all modes of transportation [6]
  • US 460 Mobility Partners (P3): Joint-venture team of American Infrastructure and Ferrovial Agromán of Spain selected as the builders of the new U.S. Route 460 toll road from Norfolk to Richmond, VA. [7]
  • Counties of Prince George, Surry, Sussex, Southampton and Isle of Wight and the City of Suffolk: Jurisdictions along the Route 460 corridor between Suffolk and Petersburg
  • Norfolk Southern Railroad: Class I railroad with tracks running parallel to the existing U.S. Route 460 highway
  • Hampton Roads/Tri-Cities MPO: Two Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) covering Route 460 corridor between Suffolk and Petersburg. Each MPO has a fiscally constrained long-range transportation plan (CLRP) and Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).
  • Military: The Hampton Roads region includes numerous important military installations, including the Norfolk Naval Station, Oceana Naval Air Station, Fort Monroe (U.S. Army), Langley Air Force Base, and Little Creek Naval Amphibious Base. Fort Lee (U.S. Army) is located near Petersburg. Together these installations are vital to the nation’s defense. [8]
  • Major business and commercial centers: Due to the growth of the Port of Virginia, the 460 Corridor is a key location for distribution and shipping facilities
  • C&M Associates: Completed the “investment grade traffic and revenue study” for Route 460 that supported the GARVEE bond issuance.
  • Independent Review Panel: Group of 14 individuals tasked with evaluating the P3 proposals in 2007.

Timeline of EventsEdit

  • May 2000 – Virginia Transportation Act of 2000 designated Route 460 as a “High Priority Corridor” between I-295 in Petersburg and the Route 58 bypass in Suffolk.
  • March 2003 – The Virginia General Assembly enacted Chapter 953 of the Acts of the Assembly requiring VDOT to issue a Solicitation for Proposal within 90 days of the Commonwealth Transportation Board’s approval of a preferred alternative.
  • March 2003 – VDOT initiated the Route 460 Location Study.
  • November 2005 – The Commonwealth Transportation Board approved the preferred alternative
  • February 2006 – VDOT issued a Solicitation for Proposals
  • September 2006 – VDOT received three conceptual proposals from Cintra USA Corporation, Itinere SPE and Virginia Corridor Partners and accepted for further consideration under the PPTA procurement process.
  • February 2007 - The secretary of transportation advanced the three conceptual proposals to the Independent Review Panel
  • April 2007 – VDOT completed a Value Engineering Study
  • March-May 2007 – Four meetings of the Independent Review Panel
  • July 2007 – The Commonwealth Transportation Board passed a resolution adopting the Independent Review Panel recommendations.
  • September 2008 - The Federal Highway Administration signed the Record of Decision
  • December 2008 – VDOT issued a Request for Detailed Proposals.
  • October 2009 – VDOT postponed procurement after proposers said project was not financially feasible without public funding ranging from $500 million to $1 billion.
  • May 2010 – New procurement initiated. Project was high statewide priority of the Governor.
  • July 2011 – VDOT and the Office of Transportation Public Private Partnerships issued a request for detailed proposals; three proposals were received from the short-listed teams.
  • October 2012 – State announced US 460 Mobility Partners as the successful team.
  • December 2012 – VDOT reached a commercial and financial close with US 460 Mobility Partners and the Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia to finance, design and build the Project.
  • March 2013 – Design work begins; field wetlands survey undertaken.
  • September 2013 – Preliminary permit application submitted to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
  • December 2013 – VDOT, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Federal Highway Administration negotiated scope of Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS)
  • March 2014 – Virginia Secretary of Transportation Aubrey Layne announced that contract and permit work being completed by US 460 Mobility Partners was being temporarily suspended while the needed environmental reviews are completed.
  • September 2014 – VDOT, FHWA, and USACE (VDOT) sign Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) on the Route 460 Corridor Improvements Project.[9]

Timeline derived from U.S. Route 460 Corridor Improvements Project Website [10]

Maps of LocationsEdit

Clear Identification of Policy IssuesEdit

  • Public Private Partnership Agreement
  • Prioritization Process (HB2) – Scoring Benefits
  • Environmental Permitting
  • Transparency
  • Hurricane Evacuation
  • Bypassing Cities

Narrative of the CaseEdit

BackgroundEdit

Route 460 is part of the United States Highway System that spans from Frankfort, Kentucky to Norfolk, Virginia. The 55 mile section of U.S. Route 460 between Suffolk and Petersburg, VA was built as a two-lane roadway in the 1930s. In the 1950s, two additional outside lanes were added to the existing lanes. The highway traverses through the counties of Prince George, Surry, Sussex, Southampton and Isle of Wight and the City of Suffolk and the communities of Disputanta, Waverly, Wakefield, Ivor, Zuni and Windsor, which were developed due to railroad tracks built in the 1890s by Norfolk and Petersburg Railroad, that currently run parallel to the 460. Today, Norfolk Southern Corporation owns and operates the dual track railroad.

Due to the growth of the Hampton Roads area, local leaders through the Virginia General Assembly allocated $25 million to “regional” Route 460 improvements in the Virginia Transportation Act of 2000. The Route 460 location study kicked off in the 2003, the same year the Virginia General Assembly passed a legislative mandate under HB 2543:

“An Act to require the Virginia Department of Transportation to solicit proposals for improvements to U.S. Route 460 between Hampton Roads and the Richmond-Petersburg metropolitan area under the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995.”

Through this process seven benefits of an improved Route 460 were identified:

  • Improve Safety - Roadway Deficiencies
  • Accommodate Increasing Freight Traffic
  • Absorb Traffic from other connector routes (i.e. I-64)
  • Provide Adequate Hurricane Evacuation Capability
  • Improve Strategic Military Connectivity
  • Enhance Local Economic Development Goals
  • Maximize Private Investment through Public Private Partnership

460 Location StudyEdit

The Virginia 460 Location Study was initiated in March 2003. It is part of the federally mandated National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to identify a preferred alternative to meet the purpose and need, and analyze the impact on the surrounding community. A subset of evaluations completed in the study include: Historic Resources, Air Quality, Water Quality, Noise, Wildlife Habitat, Wetlands, Land Use, Open Space, and Social Economic Impacts. The study sets the framework for how local, state and federal agencies develop the project. In May 2005, the Draft Environment Impact Statement (DEIS) was signed. The preferred alternative was a new limited access four-lane, divided highway 55 miles in length along the south side of existing Route 460, with seven interchanges. Toll feasibility was conducted as part of the study. The Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) approved the preferred alternative in November 2005. The CTB approval enabled VDOT to begin the project solicitation process. The Final EIS was signed by FHWA in June 2008 with a slightly modified alternative through Isle of Wright County.

Project Structure and FinanceEdit

Solicitation for Proposals:

The initial solicitation for proposals for the Route 460 P3 project was issued in February 2006 by the Virginia office of Public-Private Partnerships (now known as VAP3), and responses were received from three private consortiums. These proposals were evaluated by the Independent Review Panel, a group of fourteen members composed of Commonwealth Transportation Board members, VDOT employees, local planning board members, and citizens. The panel members were appointed by Virginia Secretary of Transportation Pierce Homer.[11]

In July 2007 the Commonwealth Transportation Board authorized VDOT to proceed with the process of procurement, and a Request for Detailed Proposals (RDP) was issued in December 2008. However, during the process of analyzing the proposed project more critically, it was determined by the private sector teams that the toll revenues would not be sufficient to cover the cost of the project due to low traffic volumes, and that a substantial public subsidy would be necessary if the project were to move forward. VDOT agreed with this assessment, and terminated the original solicitation process in October 2009.[12] VDOT then considered a number of different options to proceed with the project, including changing the project terms and sharing revenue risk with the concessionaire. VDOT initially offered a $500M subsidy for construction of the roadway, but the teams said that this was not sufficient to make the project economically viable. VDOT finally settled on removing the operations and maintenance portion of the contract, believing that this would make the deal more attractive by removing this risk from the bidders.[13] It was at this point that the Route 460 project essentially became a Design-Build-Finance arrangement, with no equity stake from the private firms.

A “new solicitation” was then issued that acknowledged that the projected tolls would not be sufficient to cover the cost of construction, operation and maintenance of the facility, and called for other creative financing options. The same three teams responded to the new solicitation with unique proposals that involved some combination of state funds, plus the issuance of GARVEE bonds and a TIFIA loan from the Federal Highway Administration.[14]

Route 460 Finance Corporation of Virginia:

To facilitate the Design-Build-Finance structure of the Route 460 project, the Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia was established to provide a “vehicle” through which the funding and management functions for the project could be performed.[15] The seven board of director members were local and state government officials who were appointed to four years terms. This entity was formed under the IRS 63-20 rules as a non-profit corporation intended to provide public benefit, and has the authority to issue Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles (GARVEE) bonds to support construction of the roadway. GARVEE bonds can be issued by government entities to finance roadway construction projects that will be provided with federal aid money (under Title 23) at some future date, or are anticipating a revenue stream related to the project, such as tolls, that will repay the bonds. These bonds are tax-exempt, which is attractive to private investors, and can provide needed capital at lower rates than could be expected without the assurance of government support or a certain revenue stream. Another benefit of these bonds is that the funds may be used to repay debt service and associated financing costs. They also allow a portion of the project construction cost to be spread out over the life of the facility rather than on a pay-as-you-go basis. For this particular project the bonds were tied to the projected toll revenue stream as a means for repayment.[16] Based on the Comprehensive Agreement, The Route 460 Funding Corporation was also charged with “oversight, management and reporting” for the construction phase of the project, as well as collecting the tolls and managing the toll collection system for the contract period of 40 years. The Virginia Department of Transportation is to retain ownership of the roadway as well as providing maintenance of the physical roadway. The Funding Corporation would rely on VDOT employees to provide the expertise and manpower to carry out the construction oversight functions for the project called for in the Comprehensive Agreement.[17]

TIFIA Loan:

A Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loan was also sought from the Federal Highway Administration in August 2012 to help cover the cost of construction.[18] TIFIAs can take the form of loan guarantees, direct loans, or lines of credit. In the Route 460 case, a direct loan was sought in the amount of $422M. A beneficial feature of TIFIA loans is that they will subordinate to other debt, allowing additional leveraging opportunities. Just like the GARVEE bonds, this type of financing allows state departments of transportation to spread out the cost of an infrastructure project over a time line that is closer to the expected life span of the facility, avoiding the need to raise taxes in the short run to pay for the project up front. These types of loans are limited to 33 percent of the total cost of the project and have a maximum term of 35 years. They also allow the public sector to attract private investment for infrastructure projects by reducing the potential liability for private entities if the revenues do not meet projections.[19] However, when the project was placed on hold in March 2014, VDOT notified the FHWA that they were rescinding their application for this loan, and no funding has been received.[20]

Virginia Ports Authority involvement:

The Virginia Ports Authority, a public agency, also committed to provide funding for this roadway, citing improved access to Virginia ports by southern and central regions of the state. This is a rather unusual move, as the VPA generally invests only in projects that directly affect the ports and their surrounding environs. The funding that was promised was structured as yearly payments of approximately $4M annually that ultimately would come from Virginia taxpayers. [21] When the project was suspended in March 2014 no payments had been received from the VPA.

Funding sources:

Based on information from the FHWA, the funding breakdown for the Route 460 project was as follows: $903M from VDOT (public funds), $250M from Virginia Port Authority (public funds), and $243M from the issuance of the GARVEE bonds (private funds), for a total project cost of $1.396M.[22] Of the $903M in VDOT funds, the TIFIA loan was to cover $422M.[23] The Route 460 Funding Corporation received approval to issue up to $425M in bonds if necessary to reduce the amount of the public subsidy for the project. Projected toll revenues were analyzed by CM & Associates in preparation for issuing the GARVEE bonds, and showed a net present value for the total toll revenue over the 40 year term of $1.04 billion. It is notable that an important aspect of what the private consortium brought to the table was expertise in organizing the financing for the project. They assisted in setting-up the bond package and TIFIA loan request, as well as presenting the project to the bond rating agencies to generate interest in the project.[24]

Assignment of risk:

The risk that has been allocated to the concessionaire in this arrangement is limited to the delivery of the roadway facility on time and within budget. Risk associated with accuracy of toll revenue projections, maintenance costs and all other facets of the project fall to the non-profit Route 460 Funding Corporation entity run by state and local government actors. As specified in the Bond Offering Statement, this is non-recourse debt, and the bondholders cannot seek recourse with the state should the bonds not be fully repaid.

Project selection and contact award:

An Independent Review Panel (IRP) was again charged with evaluating the initial proposals to the second RFP in 2010. The IRP for this second round was made up of eleven members, appointed by Secretary of Transportation Sean T. Connaughton, and chaired by the Chief Deputy Commissioner Charlie Kilpatrick. The three interested parties made presentations of their initial proposals to the IRP at public meetings in held in December 2010 and January 2011. In July 2011 the Virginia Office of Transportation Public-Private Partnerships (OTP3) issued a request for Detailed Proposals to these three groups in preparation for final selection, emphasizing the desire for the lowest public subsidy. The winning bidder was determined within the PVA3 office, and was based on two criteria: the technical proposal, which was either pass or fail, and the price in terms of the public subsidy. All of the consortiums passed the technical portion, so the final decision came down to the group that arranged the project so as to require the lowest public subsidy from the state. The fixed-price, Design-Build-Finance contract valued at $1.396M was awarded in October 2012 to the consortium led by Cintra Infraestructuras S.A.U. which became known as “US 460 Mobility Partners.” A VDOT press release from October 17, 2012 states that US Mobility Partners was chosen as lead “because they offered a financial plan requiring the least public subsidy.”[25]

Comprehensive Agreement:

The Comprehensive Agreement, signed in December 2012, stipulates that the agreement is between Virginia Department of Transportation (the “Department”), the Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia (the “Private Party”), and US 460 Mobility Partners LLC (the “Design-Build Contractor”). It also goes on to say that the “Private Party” will provide “appropriate oversight, management and reporting of all phases of the project” until its completion. As stated previously, VDOT employees actually fill this roll for the Route 460 Funding Corporation. The agreement also states under Article 7 that the “Private Party” is responsible for obtaining and repaying all financing related to the project, without recourse to the state. Under Article 9 the “Private Party” is committed to maintain and repair the toll collection system on the project, but all other maintenance functions related to the roadway are to be completed and funded by the State of Virginia through VDOT.[26]

Project expenditures to date:

•Design-Build Contract expenditures through March 2014 totaled $239 million

–Expenditures from bond proceeds to date ~ $108 million 
–Expenditures from Commonwealth funds to date ~ $131 million 
–$81 million less than maximum permitted by payout curve 

•Expenditures relate to the following activities:

–Pre-execution work $25 million 
–Engineering/permitting/etc. $70 million 
–Bonds/insurance $36 million 
–Mobilization/ Mgmt $93 million 
–Right-of-Way & utilities $15 million 

•Additional VDOT costs associated with the Project through March 2014 totaled $43 million

•Overall Project related spending approaching $282 million [27]

IssuesEdit

Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) – wetland permitEdit

VDOT reached a commercial agreement with 460 Mobility Partners on December 20, 2012, and the preliminary permit application was submitted in September 2013. The project has been unable to secure a wetland permit from the US Army Corps of Engineers due to the high amount of wetland affected by the project.

The Outline Environmental Management Plan section of the Comprehensive Agreement between VDOT, the Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia, and US 460 Mobility Partners, LLC, dated December 20, 2012, addresses the need to obtain four permits to proceed with the project, including a permit from the US Army Corps of Engineers under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act. [28] Despite the acknowledgement that the impact on surrounding wetlands might make achieving a USACE permit difficult, 460 Mobility Partners did not bear the full permitting risk. [29] Additionally, the Comprehensive Agreement states that the Design-Builder will be responsible for obtaining the requisite permits, [30] but the cost schedule begins 20% of the payments to US 460 Mobility Partners prior to completion of the project.[31] The Commonwealth has already spent nearly $300 million this year prior to construction. [32]

Traffic ProjectionsEdit

C&M Associates, Inc. provided final traffic and revenue analysis for the U.S. 460 project on November 12, 2012.[33]

The CBA-1 from the initial FSEIS “would have run parallel to the existing U.S. 460, on which average volume ranges from 9,200 to 17,000 vehicles a day. The state had estimated that the new highway — a toll road that would not have replaced the existing toll-free route — would initially carry 5,000 to 6,000 cars and trucks a day.”[34]

The Executive Summary from the DSEIS states that the Level of Service for most segments is a LOS A or B for each of the Alternatives, including the No Build (US 460 DSEIS Executive Summary, ES-11). Although the traffic analysis does project an increase in traffic volumes by 2040, the projections for all of the Alternatives is an Average Daily Traffic Volume “of less than 30,000 vehicles” (US 460 DSEIS Executive Summary, ES-11). As the Washington Post notes, “By contrast, the Springfield interchange of the Capital Beltway and I-95 carries between 400,000 and 500,000 vehicles per day.”[35] See the full traffic projections in the two tables below:

2040 Average Daily Traffic Ranges[36]

Alternative Existing Route 460 Design Corridor
No Build 19,250 - 26,700 N/A
1 10,500 - 17,100 20,780 - 34,700
2N/2S Tolled 12,400 - 21,450 2,550 - 32,200
2N/2S Untolled 1,200 - 5,500 24,450 - 35,300
3 4,850 - 17,500 19,400 - 42,000
4 N/A 23,550 - 31,400
5N/5S 9,600 - 15,200 8,860 - 26,200


2040 Corridor Performance Metrics Summary[37]

Alternative Distance (miles) Average Operating Speed (mph) Travel Time (minutes)
No Build 50 43 70
1 52 70 45
2N Tolled 54 56 58
2S Tolled 54 56 58
2N Untolled 54 53 61
2S Untolled 54 53 61
3 54 70 46
4 50 41 74
5N 54 70 47
5S 54 70 46

Return on InvestmentEdit

C&M Associates, Inc. developed a report titled the "Investment Grade Traffic and Revenue Study, Final Report," which the company issued in November 12, 2012.[38]provided the traffic and revenue projections for select years throughout the life of the agreement in their 2012 report.

Initial Toll Revenue Projections:

C&M Associates, in the November 2012 report, projected annual project revenues based on a toll rate of 6 cents per mile.[39] Additionally, C&M's revenue model assumed that "the opening toll rate was escalated at 1.2% and 1.3% for autos and trucks, respectively."[40] The report uses a Base Case which projects that in 2018, the opening year for the project, toll transactions would generate approximately $10.3 million in toll revenue.[41] According to C&M's analysis, "by 2035, the number of transactions was projected to increase to approximately 37.8 million, and to more than 47.5 million by the final forecast year 2057."[42] The report projected that revenue would reach $24.5 by 2035 and $48.8 million by 2057, with an estimated net present value of approximately $1.04 billion for the 40-year project.[43] Trucks account for 15% of the projected toll transactions and provide 38% of the total revenue in C&M's Base Case model for the project.[44]

The projections can be found in the following tables below:

Annual Transactions (Thousands)[45]

Year Auto Truck Total
2018 17,813 2,978 20,791
2025 26,848 4,564 31,412
2035 32,038 5,747 37,785
2045 35,815 6,700 42,515
2055 39,171 7,556 46,727
2057 39,792 7,715 47,507
Example Example Example Example


Annual Revenue (Thousands 2012 Dollars)[46]

Year Auto Truck Total
2018 $6,730 $3,523 $10,253
2025 $11,618 $6,108 $17,726
2035 $15,501 $8,943 $24,444
2045 $19,242 $12,072 $31,314
2055 $23,358 $15,769 $39,137
2057 $24,241 $16,582 $40,823
2018-57 Total Revenue (NPV) $649,610 $394,478 $1,044,088

Existing Route 460 (No Toll – Free Alternative:

C&M's report does assume a modest toll diversion as a result of drives using the non-tolled, existing US 460 instead. The report notes that in the initial year of the project, "a free Route 460 in 2018 will capture more trips when compared to that of the tolled scenario (14% vs. 5%)."[47] Despite the continual use of a free-alternative, the report projects that there will be an increased conversion rate of drivers using the tolled route based on time savings estimations.[48]

Current Status:Edit

On December 27, 2013, the Federal Highway Administration and US Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk District, in coordination with the Virginia Department of Transportation, issued notice expressing their intent on preparing a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for Route 460, which appeared in the Federal Register. [49] According to the notice, “The purpose of this SEIS is to evaluate new information regarding the aquatic resource impacts and alternatives described in the June 2008 FEIS and the September 2008 Record of Decision (ROD).” [50]

On March 14, 2014, Virginia Secretary of Transportation Aubrey Layne announced that the Commonwealth would suspend the contract and permit work for the US 460 project. The Secretary noted that while improvements to the Route 460 corridor are necessary, especially as an evacuation route for hurricanes, suspension of the project to save costs in the interim was an essential step.[51] During the suspension, the Virginia Department of Transportation expressed its desire to continue its environmental review to prepare the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement of the US 460 project in coordination with the Federal Highway Administration and the US Army Corps of Engineers.[52]

Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement:

On September 22, 2014, the Federal Highway Administration, US Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk District, and Virginia Department of Transportation released the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement on the US 460 project.[53]

“The Draft SEIS evaluated the following five alternatives as well as a no-build alternative. VIEW INTERACTIVE MAP

  • Alternative 1: A four-lane divided road that runs south of the existing U.S. Route 460 and could be tolled.
  • Alternative 2: A four-lane divided road that runs along the existing U.S. Route 460, with six bypasses around the existing towns. The bypasses could be tolled or not tolled.
  • Alternative 3: A four-lane divided road that runs north of the existing U.S. Route 460 and could be tolled.
  • Alternative 4: A four-lane road along the existing U.S. Route 460 with improvements to meet standards for medians, shoulders and intersections.
  • Alternative 5: An eight-lane road along the existing corridor with an expressway in the center, bypasses at the towns, and local access roadway to the outside. The expressway could be tolled or not tolled.”[54]

According to the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, Alternative 1, the CBA-1 preferred alternative from the Draft and Final EIS, would disturb 613 acres of wetland, which represents a 370% increase over the assessment in the Final EIS.[55] Conversely, Alternative 4, which would make improvements to the existing US 460, would disturb 91 acres of wetland,[56] which is less than the 129 acres listed in the Final EIS.[57] Conversely, while Alternative 4 would have the least impact on wetlands, this alternative would have the most significant impact on the business along US 460, the option requires installing medians and widening the shoulder on the existing route, which would affect adjacent businesses.[58]

According to Washington Post article dated September 22, 2014, State Transportation Secretary Aubrey Layne stated that there was a “low probability” that the new highway would be built. He expects instead that improvements will be made to the existing U.S. 460, a four-lane road spanning 55 miles between Petersburg and Suffolk.”[59]

Next Steps:

VDOT announced that it will be holding a series of three public hearings on the Draft SEIS to solicit citizen feedback.[60] VDOT is encouraging citizens to provide written comments[61] at the meeting or submit feedback electronically through a Survey Monkey tool.[62] Comments on the project are due by November 17, 2014.[63]

Discussion QuestionsEdit

  • Should the Government have issued a notice to proceed without obtaining the environmental permits?
  • Was this project a catalyst for policy change for statewide project evaluation?
  • Should the Government cut its losses and move on?
  • Does Improving the existing Route 460 provide the desired benefits?
  • Should this new road be tolled based on the low traffic volumes?
  • Should we consider this project a P3 given the retained risk by the Commonwealth and lack of an equity stake by the private company?
  • In what ways, if any, did the typical P3 framework fall short in this example?

Additional Readings:Edit

  1. Project Website: http://www.route460project.org/default.asp
  2. Purpose and Need: http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/Purpose_and_Need_Statement_Tech_Report_May_2005.pdf (12 Pages)
  3. P3 Mandate: http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?031+ful+CHAP0953 (1 page)
  4. Major Business Terms: http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/resources/2012/oct/workshop/Presentation_Agenda_Item_9A_Route_460_CTB_Major_Business_Terms_17Oct12_Final_Version.pdf (16 slides)
  5. Overview and History: http://www.route460project.org/documents/U.S._Route_460_Corridor_Improvements_Project_Presentation_Handout.pdf (41 slides)
  6. Comprehensive Agreement: http://www.route460project.org/documents/Comprehensive_Agreement_-_Execution_Version-c.pdf (Refer to first 43 pages plus Exhibit I - pages 734-6)
  7. Isle of Wight Intermodal Park Concept, July 2007: http://insidetheisle.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/FINAL_IOW_MAY_2007-Compressed.pdf (85 pages)
  8. An Economic Opportunity for Hampton Roads: An Intermodal Park, June 2005: http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/IPS-FINAL.pdf (25 pages)
  9. Economic Impact of the U.S. Route 460 Corridor, December 8, 2011: http://www.route460project.org/documents/R460_EconomicImpact.pdf (38 pages)

ReferencesEdit

  1. http://www.virginiadot.org/about_vdot/default.asp
  2. http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/about
  3. http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/
  4. http://www.usace.army.mil/Missions/CivilWorks/RegulatoryProgramandPermits/ObtainaPermit.aspx
  5. http://www.portofvirginia.com/pdfs/about/cafr_web_2013___final.pdf
  6. http://www.vappta.org/resources/PPTA%20Implementation%20Manual%20WORK%20IN%20PROGRESS-09162014%20-changes%20accepted%20and%20comments%20removed%20-%20ready%20for%20saving%20as%20pdf.pdf
  7. http://www.americaninfrastructure.com/US460.aspx
  8. http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/Purpose_and_Need_Statement_Tech_Report_May_2005.pdf
  9. VDOT, FHWA & U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS SIGN ENVIRONMENTAL DOCUMENTS ON ROUTE 460 PROJECT IN SOUTHEASTERN VIRGINIA http://www.virginiadot.org/newsroom/hampton_roads/2014/vdot_fhwa_%26_u.s.76169.asp
  10. http://www.route460project.org/project_timeline.asp
  11. http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/460pp_SFP_FINAL_06_02_09.pdf
  12. http://www.route460project.org/documents/U.S._Route_460_Corridor_Improvements_Project_Presentation_Handout.pdf
  13. Route 460 Project Manager Morteza Farajian interview
  14. http://www.route460project.org/documents/U.S._Route_460_Corridor_Improvements_Project_Presentation_Handout.pdf
  15. http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ipd/p3/defined/dbfo_6320.aspx
  16. http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ipd/finance/tools_programs/federal_debt_financing/garvees/
  17. http://www.route460project.org/documents/Comprehensive_Agreement_-_Execution_Version-c.pdf
  18. http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ipd/tifia/letters_interest_applications/letters_submitted_2013.aspx
  19. http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ipd/tifia/
  20. Route 460 Project Manager Morteza Farajian interview
  21. http://articles.dailypress.com/2011-10-24/business/dp-nws-port-authority-20111024_1_port-traffic-transportation-projects-virginia-port-authority
  22. http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ipd/project_profiles/va_route_460_improvements.aspx
  23. http://www.ctb.virginia.gov/resources/2012/oct/workshop/Presentation_Agenda_Item_9A_Route_460_CTB_Major_Business_Terms_17Oct12_Final_Version.pdf
  24. Route 460 Project Manager Morteza Farajian interview
  25. http://virginiadot.org/newsroom/statewide/2012/gov._mcdonnell_announces_private61280.asp
  26. http://www.route460project.org/documents/Comprehensive_Agreement_-_Execution_Version-c.pdf
  27. http://www.route460project.org/documents/U.S._Route_460_Corridor_Improvements_Project_Presentation_Handout.pdf
  28. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/Comprehensive_Agreement_-_Execution_Version-c.pdf, Technical Proposal, Outline Environmental Management Plan, Volume 1, Section D.2, Page 2)
  29. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/Comprehensive_Agreement_-_Execution_Version-c.pdf, Technical Proposal, Outline Environmental Management Plan, Volume 1, Section D.2, Page 2).
  30. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/Comprehensive_Agreement_-_Execution_Version-c.pdf, pg. 101)
  31. ((http://www.route460project.org/documents/Comprehensive_Agreement_-_Execution_Version-c.pdf, Technical Proposal, Outline Environmental Management Plan, Volume 1, Section D.1, Page 15
  32. (http://hamptonroads.com/2014/09/study-us-460-project-would-cost-18-billion)
  33. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf)
  34. (http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/study-ramps-up-cost-of-stalled-highway-in-virginia/2014/09/22/e4128860-429d-11e4-b437-1a7368204804_story.html)
  35. (http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/study-ramps-up-cost-of-stalled-highway-in-virginia/2014/09/22/e4128860-429d-11e4-b437-1a7368204804_story.html)
  36. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/publicMeeting/Board_Traffic.pdf)
  37. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/publicMeeting/Board_Traffic.pdf)
  38. ((http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf)
  39. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. 5-1)
  40. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. 5-1)
  41. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. 5-12)
  42. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. 5-12)
  43. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. 5-12)
  44. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. 5-12)
  45. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. ES-4)
  46. (http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, pg. ES-4)
  47. <http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, p. 4-37)
  48. <http://www.route460project.org/documents/CM_VDOT_US460L3_FinalReport_20121127.pdf, p. 4-37)
  49. (https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2013/12/27/2013-30695/intent-to-prepare-a-supplemental-environmental-impact-statement-for-the-route-460-location-study)
  50. (https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2013/12/27/2013-30695/intent-to-prepare-a-supplemental-environmental-impact-statement-for-the-route-460-location-study)
  51. (http://www.virginiadot.org/newsroom/statewide/2014/transportation_secretary_layne_announces71582.asp)
  52. (http://www.virginiadot.org/newsroom/statewide/2014/transportation_secretary_layne_announces71582.asp)
  53. (http://www.virginiadot.org/newsroom/hampton_roads/2014/vdot_fhwa_%26_u.s.76169.asp)
  54. (http://www.virginiadot.org/newsroom/hampton_roads/2014/vdot_fhwa_%26_u.s.76169.asp)
  55. (http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/0808_Rt460FEIS.pdf, 3-5)
  56. (Draft SEIS, ES-6)
  57. (Final EIS, http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/0808_Rt460FEIS.pdf)
  58. (Final EIS, http://www.virginiadot.org/projects/resources/0808_Rt460FEIS.pdf)
  59. (http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/study-ramps-up-cost-of-stalled-highway-in-virginia/2014/09/22/e4128860-429d-11e4-b437-1a7368204804_story.html)
  60. http://www.route460project.org/draft_supplemental_environmental_impact_statement.asp
  61. http://www.route460project.org/documents/US_Route_460_Comment_Sheet.pdf
  62. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/460SEIS
  63. http://www.route460project.org/draft_supplemental_environmental_impact_statement.asp