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In April 2012, the Virginia General Assembly approved House Bill 599 (HB 599) which required the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) to coordinate with the Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB), the Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT) and the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA) to evaluate all significant transportation projects. The legislation requires:
- VDOT to rate and evaluate a minimum of 25 projects for congestion reduction and emergency evacuation; and
- Conduct the rating and evaluation process at least every 4 years.
As part of SB 1785 (2019), reporting responsibility as required by HB 599 (2012), transferred from VDOT to the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority on July 1, 2019.
HB 599 requires significant transportation projects in Northern Virginia to be evaluated and rated before NVTA adopts its funding programs. Each project’s evaluation and rating is based on the project’s expected impact on reducing congestion, and to the extent possible, the project’s expected improvement in regional mobility during a homeland security emergency. Projects evaluated include highway, mass transit and technology projects.
While the project ratings are used during NVTA’s funding cycles, they are based on analysis conducted for TransAction, the region’s long-range multimodal transportation plan, which is developed and maintained by NVTA.