Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Loudoun County Supervisors Move to Accept Compromise Proposal on Dulles Rail, with Conditions

The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors voted today to accept the mediated proposal of U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, with certain modifications, to resolve issues surrounding the Metrorail expansion to Dulles Airport. The Board voted to accept the compromise proposal with the following conditions: 

  • Loudoun County will make a reasonable and best effort to assemble a financial option for the three parking garages in Loudoun County, thereby taking the cost of the garages out of the project. 
  • This reduced project scope is contingent upon either a private sector partner and/or the Commonwealth guaranteeing and backing the cost of the parking garages or other alternative financing options that require no local tax funding support, as well as the realization of funding through the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA).  If Loudoun is successful in these efforts, the costs will be removed from the project. If not, they remain a project cost shared by all parties.  
  • The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) accepts the amended compromise proposal, including the above-ground station; and that Fairfax County and the Commonwealth of Virginia accept the amended compromise proposal.  
  • MWAA donates the land for the parking garage at the Route 606 station. 
  • The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) considers reducing their standards for parking garages at Metro stations and considers alternate parking fees for the garages in Loudoun County.  

The Board also re-affirmed its earlier rejection of the offer by MWAA to maintain an underground station by financing the differential for only Loudoun and Fairfax Counties, but not reducing the burden on Dulles Toll Road users. Also, the Board made it clear that Loudoun County still has the 90-day window to ?opt-out? of the project, if desired, once the milestone known as 100 Percent Preliminary Engineering is reached.   
Board of Supervisors Chairman Scott K. York says he will relay the position of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors to Secretary LaHood and the other funding partners at the next meeting on Wednesday, July 20.

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