Shuttered Rest Areas Reopen In Virginia

asset_upload_file679_2544Today in Virginia the final seven rest areas that were closed last year due to budget cuts were officially reopened.

In January, the Commonwealth Transportation Board responded to Governor McDonnell’s call to reopen 19 closed rest areas by reversing its June 2009 decision to reduce the number of VDOT rest areas and welcome centers from 42 to 23.

As a result four rest areas were reopened in mid-February and eight more reopened in mid-March. The reopening of the final seven rest areas has restored all of Virginia’s rest areas to full operations.
In an announcement one day ahead of the scheduled April 15th opening, Governor McDonnell said, “Rest areas allow a break for the tired motorists on our state’s highways. The facilities also provide valuable access to tourists, businesses and commuters with information on the many sites and services the Commonwealth has to offer.”

The facilities officially reopened today include:

  • I-95 Ladysmith north and south rest areas at mile marker 107
  • I-64 Goochland east rest area at mile marker 169
  • I-64 Goochland west rest area at mile marker 168
  • I-81 Troutville south rest area at mile marker 158
  • I-85 Alberta north and south rest areas at mile marker 32

In preparation for rest area reopenings, VDOT crews have restored utilities, restocked traveler information centers, cleaned the facilities, installed vending machines and restored rest area grounds. Gates blocking motorists’ entry to these seven rest areas were opened over the last week while VDOT crews completed final electrical, plumbing and facility testing. All work is now complete and the rest areas are officially open for business.

VDOT will soon announce its plan to offset or reduce the costs of operating the rest areas.