Corridor H Update in the Parsons Advocate
August 22, 2005
The August 17th edition of the Parsons Advocate contains a story on the front page about Corridor H planning for Tucker County. According to the story, the state highways commissioner has provided an estimate of the schedule to complete Corridor H through Tucker County at the request of Senator Byrd. Bottom line up front - the Commissioner informed Byrd that construction of the Davis to Bismark section would not begin until 2009 and will take 2 construction "seasons" to complete. Construction of the stretch of Corridor H from Kerens to Parsons will not begin until 2013, and no schedule is yet set for the stretch from Davis to Parsons (this is the section that will have to span the Blackwater Canyon). As yet not a mile of Corridor H has been built in Tucker County, and it looks like that will remain unchanged for at least 4 more years.
The article also noted that $85M / year was allocated to Corridor H in the latest Federal Transportation Bill, with around $65M of that targetted at new construction.
Hadn't seen the figures on the Transportation bill -- that is good news for Corr H advocates, obviously. I think the timelines for building Bismarck-Davis and points west aren't entirely surprising. My understanding is that the general approach of the project is to build west from Baker (excluding the Wardensville stretch). The connector from the Baker-Moorefield segment opened a couple years ago to 219 at Moorefield is almost done (right?) but not much progress beyond Moorefield yet? So Moorefield-Forman and Forman-Bismarck both need to get built before the project will be ready to push on from Bismarck into the CV. Which makes 2009 make sense (sounds aggressive, actually).
Selfishly, for DC area skiers, all we really need is construction to reach Bismarck. From there its a fast shot on flat straight roads already.
I agree that the Moorefield to Forman and Forman to Bismark are the key segments of Corridor H that need to be completed -- the others are just gravy. By my calculations, those two sections alone will save approximately 30 minutes on the trip to CV. It will eliminate having to go slow through Moorefield, then down to Petersburg (go slow again through that town), then heading on from there either via 33 to 32 or 42 to 93 to 32. I think those two sections are the next ones in line to be completed and I'm hoping they will be done in the next five years or so.
I don't see any other sections saving more than five minutes on the trip, including the Wardensville to Baker section we have been patiently waiting for now for a year!!
Maybe if an extension of Corridor H is ever completed on the Virginia side to I-81 then that section would save more than 5 minutes.
It took from when I was in grade school til almost my college graduation to complete Corridor E, I don't wee why Corridor H will be any different.
Yes Wardensville-Baker may not save too much time, but I am just looking forward to the opportunity to spend less time in and around Wardensville aka America's Speed Trap.