(The following press release from the Virginia Governor's Office was
received by e-mail and was reformatted. The sender verified the statement.)
Commonwealth of Virginia
Office of Governor Bob McDonnell
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 20, 2012
Governor McDonnell Announces That Commonwealth Signs Comprehensive Agreement
and Reaches Financial Close to Build the New Route 460 in Southeast Virginia
~Project to greatly improve transportation, create thousands of jobs and have a
multi-billion dollar economic impact~
RICHMOND - Governor Bob McDonnell announced today that the Commonwealth has
reached a commercial and financial close with US 460 Mobility Partners (a
partnership of Ferrovial Agroman, S.A. and American Infrastructure) and the
Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia to finance, design and build a new
55-mile section of U.S. Route 460 in southeastern Virginia. Project
development begins immediately for the new $1.4 billion roadway, which has been
a top transportation priority locally, regionally and statewide for nearly a
decade. The project was developed to address roadway deficiencies, improve
safety, accommodate increasing freight shipments and reduce travel delays among
many other needs.
"As recognized by local officials and the General Assembly years ago, there is
a clear and critical need for the new U.S. 460," said Governor McDonnell. "In
2000, the Virginia Transportation Act designated U.S. 460 as a high priority in
southeastern Virginia. In 2003, the General Assembly passed a law requiring
the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) to build a new stretch of U.S.
460 under the Public-Private Transportation Act of 1995. Legislative leaders
supported the project because it would improve safety for motorists and
connectivity for freight and military traffic among other benefits. Today, the
Commonwealth is finally delivering on that need and building a project that
will not only make transportation better for the southeastern region and the
state, it will also generate jobs and economic development opportunities,
bringing extensive long-term benefits in so many ways."
The key benefits of the new U.S. 460 include:
* Safety - Improve travel safety and efficiency along the
corridor, including expanding westbound hurricane-evacuation routes
* Jobs - Generate approximately 4,000 jobs during
construction and 14,000 jobs over the long-term, according to Chmura Economics
* Economic development - Attract new business
opportunities, boost tourism and accommodate greater freight traffic from the
growth in demand at the Port of Virginia
* Connectivity - Enhance connectivity among the region's
* Choice and time savings - Provide a reliable alternative
to I-64 between Richmond and Norfolk, saving 20 minutes compared to taking the
existing U.S. 460
* Economic impact - Chmura Economics estimates that the new
highway will have an annual economic impact of $7.3 billion by 2020
The new U.S. 460 will be a four-lane divided highway from Prince George County
to Suffolk. The toll road will be parallel to the existing U.S. 460. The
existing Route 460 will remain a free alternative.
Secretary of Transportation Sean T. Connaughton explained, "The Commonwealth
has worked extensively with localities, the region and the public to complete
environmental work, establish a corridor and then go through a lengthy
evaluation process to select a private-sector partner and develop a financial
plan to design and build the new highway. Today marks a major milestone with a
signed contract to begin work on a transportation project that will increase
safety and provide a critical link to jobs, commerce and the military."
VDOT, in coordination with the Office of Transportation Public-Private
Partnerships, procured the project under Virginia's Public-Private
Transportation Act, which allows the Commonwealth to partner with the private
sector to finance, design and build transportation improvements. The
comprehensive agreement was signed today between VDOT Commissioner Greg
Whirley, US 460 Mobility Partners and the Route 460 Funding Corporation of
Virginia. Financial close was also reached, which releases funding to launch
project work. Bonds issued by the Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia to
finance the project were oversubscribed, meaning there was demand for more
bonds than were available. The bonds were also sold at a lower than planned
interest rate, which benefits the Commonwealth.
"VDOT will work with the Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia to lead this
project and oversee the work performed by US 460 Mobility Partners during
construction," said VDOT Commissioner Whirley. "The private-sector team will
design and build the project at a fixed cost by a fixed date and will take
significant risks associated with delivering the project. The Commonwealth
will continue to involve the community and public, seeking their input and
addressing their concerns throughout project development and construction."
"We are proud to have worked with the Commonwealth, a visionary state, and
regional officials to achieve financial close on the new U.S. 460 project,"
said Ignacio Vivancos, president of Ferrovial Agroman US, which leads the US
460 Mobility Partners. "Achieving financial close allows us to get down to the
real business of delivering this important project to the citizens of Virginia."
William Fralin who chairs the Virginia Port Authority (VPA) Board of
Commissioners added, "The VPA is investing in the new U.S. 460 project because
it will be an economic engine for the Commonwealth over the long-term, creating
opportunities for distribution centers and light manufacturing that will drive
cargo through the Port of Virginia. This creates jobs and grows our economy."
"The new U.S. 460 will bring greatly needed job and business
benefits to the citizens and residents I represent along the corridor," said
Delegate Rick Morris, R-Carrollton. "I support this project because it is an
investment in the future of southeastern Virginia. This project comes at a
perfect time as the Commonwealth looks for ways to assist the smaller
communities to take advantage of economic opportunities."
"The new U.S. 460 will support economic development and private industry
development at a time when many in our community are unemployed and
under-employed," said Al Casteen, chairman of the Isle of Wight County Board of
Supervisors. "The jobs generated during construction and long term will be
sought after by both local business and jobseekers. Without a doubt, the new
U.S. 460 will bring economic prosperity that will benefit the region and the
state well into the future."
Suffolk Mayor Linda T. Johnson said, "The City of Suffolk was recently named
one of America's best places to live for job growth. The benefits that the new
U.S. 460 will bring including job opportunities and economic development will
further enhance this mark of distinction. I welcome this project to our
Key business terms and costs:
* VDOT will oversee the work performed by US 460 Mobility
Partners during construction, and operate and maintain the facility after the
construction is completed. VDOT will retain ownership and all potential excess
revenues of the project as well as set the initial toll rates.
* US 460 Mobility Partners will design and build the
* The Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia is a
non-profit corporation that has sold tax-exempt bonds to finance part of the
project. The debt will be non-recourse to VDOT, the Commonwealth and US 460
Mobility Partners. The funding corporation will collect the tolls, adjust the
toll rates and manage the toll collection system over the course of 40 years.
* The project cost is $1.396 billion including design,
construction and toll collection set-up.
Funding sources are as follows:
* Public funding from VDOT - $903 million, which is lower
than originally forecasted due to reduced interest rates in the bond market. A
lower amount is anticipated should the Commonwealth secure a low-interest
federal loan from the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act
* Public funding from the Virginia Port Authority - $250
million, a lower amount is possible if a TIFIA loan is secured.
* Private sector tax-exempt bonds sold this month by the
Route 460 Funding Corporation of Virginia - $243 million (net amount).
* The new U.S. 460 will be a 55-mile four-lane divided,
limited-access highway from Suffolk to Prince George County. It will parallel
the existing U.S. 460.
* There will be seven interchanges at routes 156, 625, 602,
40, 620, 616 and 258.
* Design and right of way work is expected to begin in
2013, which will include public meetings. Construction is anticipated to start
* When the road opens in 2018, tolls will begin at
approximately 7 cents per mile ($0.067) for cars and 21 cents per mile ($0.213)
for trucks. This equates to $3.69 for cars and $11.72 for trucks for the entire
* Tolls will be collected electronically using E-ZPass and
license plate video tolling. There will be no manual toll collection.
* The existing U.S. 460 will have no tolls and remain a
For more project information, visit www.route460ppta.org
Office of the Governor
Contact: Jeff Caldwell
Phone: (804) 225-4260
Virginia Department of Transportation
Contact: Tamara Rollison
Phone: (804) 786-2715
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