Tackling Transportation

Transportation

America loves cars. Our dependence on automobiles for transportation has stimulated our economy and provided each of us with great flexibility and convenience. It has also led to expensive highway systems that are often clogged and never wide-enough. In Northern Virginia, transportation is the largest source of the carbon pollution which is threatening our planet. Carbon pollution negatively affects our health, our environment and our communities.


Before the Covid pandemic, the General Assembly approved an ambitious plan to address these challenges by championing an efficient, environmentally-friendly transportation system that included an increase in funding for public transportation, increased funds for maintenance and a new rail authority. These projects would largely be funded by an increased gas tax. Currently Virginia’s gas tax is in the lower half of taxes in the nation and lower than any surrounding jurisdictions. These projects may be delayed due to competing priorities for funding due to Covid.  We must get this plan back on track.


In 2021 and beyond, the legislature should redirect the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT)  away from old models and practices and towards a more holistic approach to transportation that knits together concerns for our planet, the needs of people without access to vehicles and improved technology rather than defaulting to paving our way to a brighter future.