More than likely tolls won’t raise money for I-64 expansion

Posted at 12:06 AM, Dec 14, 2012
and last updated 2012-12-14 00:06:33-05

RICHMOND, VA. (WTVR)-- State plans to widen a stretch of Interstate 64 between Richmond and Hampton Roads and adding tolls might be one way to cover costs, but it's said to be unlikely. 

Thinking of the beach in mid-December may seem a bit impractical, unless you're one Chesterfield man.

“We go to the VA beach area quite often,” says Conrad Scott.  He told CBS 6 that he takes at least 10 trips with his family every summer. Scott says the beach is always great, but getting there on I-64, not so much.

“Especially when you're coming back from the beach on Sunday night, it’s extremely congested," says Scott.

Scott says he's tired of wasting quality family time in the car.

That's why he's closely watching VDOT’s plans to widen a stretch of I-64 between Richmond and Hampton Roads.

One option widens the road from the outer lane. Another option widens within the median.

“It addresses capacity, addresses roadway deficiency and capacity,” says the project’s manager, Nicholas Nies. He tells us, once they figure out which widening option works best, VDOT will need to figure out how to pay for the project.

Tolls are being considered, but, Nies says, at this point that’s not likely.

“The all toll option really can't move forward. There's no federal mechanism to move forward,” says Nies. He says that’s because the state is already looking at putting up tolls along I-95 in Sussex County.

The project is expected to cost between $4.7 and $7.3 billion dollars and Nies says, lawmakers will need to decide how it should be funded.  

Meanwhile Scott says, he’s in no rush yet. He tells CBS 6, he’ll just keep extending his beach trips to avoid all the congestion when heading back to Chesterfield. “It's almost better to come back late--- really late,” says Scott. 

VDOT says this project is still in its early planning stages.