RICHMOND, VA –– In a speech to the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce today Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) outlined a series of transportation reform proposals and called for Virginia to “tackle the transportation challenges of the 21st Century.”
Following the passage of this year’s historic transportation funding plan, Howell said “the need to be smarter and wiser with our resources takes on added importance.” Howell emphasized the need to find new solutions to congestion problems and increased capacity needs saying “pouring more and more concrete, adding more and more capacity and building more and more mass transit is the 20th Century solution. Instead, we need a new way of thinking about transportation.”
Howell, who carried House Bill 2313 during the 2013 regular session, unveiled 11 specific proposals in three broad areas. His speech focused on increasing the use of technology, making Virginia’s transportation network work better for consumers and improving return on investment.
“First, we must harness technology, innovation and new ideas. Second, we must create a consumer-based model that focuses on congestion relief, safety and economic development. Third, we must ensure that every step we take is measured by its return on investment. This framework should drive our decision making process on transportation. Using technology, innovation and new ideas to build a consumer-driven transportation network based on proven metrics, Virginia can once again lead the country in revolutionizing how state governments spend on transportation,” Howell said in his remarks.
The proposals outlined by the Speaker include creating a new transportation fund dedicated to using technology-based solutions, creating a “Virginia Transportation Solutions Working Group” within the Commonwealth Transportation Board and creating a “Transportation Priority Standard” to evaluate and measure transportation projects based on three primary factors: congestion relief, safety and economic development.