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Sierra Club Names North-South Corridor Among ‘Worst’ Projects

The environmental group opposes the road it deems to be the ‘Outer Beltway.”

The Sierra Club has released a new report that names Virginia’s proposed North-South Corridor among the 50 worst transportation projects in the United States. There’s a meeting tonight in Ashburn about the proposed project, which the Sierra Club refers to as Northern Virginia’s “Outer Beltway.”

Sierra has urged the state “to move beyond oil,” because the North-South Corridor “will keep Virginia dependent on oil for our daily transportation needs,” according to a press release from the group.

Besides tonight’s meeting in Ashburn, there’s another meeting Wednesday in Manassas about the project.

State officials have touted the project as a way to improve access to Dulles International Airport, while the Sierra Club suggests its just the beginning of a full Outer Beltway, pointing to a study of traffic movements across the Potomac.

“Transportation infrastructure we build today will be with us for decades,” said Roger Diedrich, the Transportation Chair of the Club’s Virginia Chapter in a press release. “This project fails to give us the choices we need in the 21st century to keep us from driving deeper into oil dependence and climate disruption.”

In contrast, the club’s report points to the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Extension, or Silver Line, as an example of a beneficial project for the region and the environment.

“We should heavily invest our transportation dollars in this kind of forward thinking project,” said Diedrich.

The full Sierra Club report is available here:  http://content.sierraclub.org/beyondoil/content/smart-choices-less-traffic

joe brewer December 18, 2012 at 12:54 PM
Studies have shown that automobiles will still be 73% of how people commute in the year 2040. Only a 1.7% decrease in automobile traffic is forecast hence the in upgrade infrastructure is necessary. Walking, bikes, rail and others forms of commuting are not going to take a big bite out of the number of cars on the roads.
Brammjr1717 December 19, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Those studies assume behavior remains relatively the same. If we change our behavior then we'll have less people commuting via automobiles. We control our fate, not numbers.
joe brewer January 07, 2013 at 07:03 PM
Like the old guy told his wife I'll change I promise I'll quit drinking, smoking and whoring around. Please forget the last time I beat you and the kids and yes I do love you, now get me another bottle of beer and be quick about it. A little dramatic but you get the point. Our culture is not going to change as long as fossil fuel is the cheaper way to go. Electricity generated by fossil fuel burning plants puts just as much pollution into the air as the cars that burn gasoline do.
Mitch Steele January 08, 2013 at 01:39 PM
This and McDonnell's highway to nowhere in Southeast Va are pipedreams that will lead to more sprawl. Dulles is NOT a frieght hub for a reason and a road is not going to fix that. Frieght moves by rail, sea and truck, very small percent moves by air and an extremely high cost. Again the GOP caters to a small special interest that will benefit greatly while the rest of us are left scratching our heads. Amazing how many times this scenrio repeats itself in subtly different ways. Why not take this same money and truely make the rt 50 and rt 28 corriders travel and business friendly with flyovers and exchanges? Oh yea the model of unsustainable sprawl is more profitable for builders I forgot.

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