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Lawmakers Demand Increased Oversight over Mark Center Traffic Mitigation Plan

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  • September 28, 2011
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In a bid to prevent overwhelming traffic congestion in northern Virginia, the region’s congressional delegation is asking DOD for enhanced oversight of its plan to mitigate the impact of moving 6,400 DOD civilian employees to Alexandria’s Mark Center.

“We are concerned that the department’s occupation plan is going forward before the appropriate transportation improvements and mitigation measures are in place,” Reps. Jim Moran and Gerry Connolly, and Sens. Jim Webb and Mark Warner wrote in a letter to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.

The four Democrats praised the Pentagon for providing $20 million for improvements surrounding the Mark Center, but warned that relocating the workers before short- and mid-term changes are in place will result in crippling traffic.

“While the transportation improvements paid for by the department will not be completed until at least December 2013, the department’s current occupation plan for the Mark Center will relocate 5,000 personnel to the BRAC site by December 2011, two full years before the transportation improvements will be completed, with the remaining personnel relocated in 2012,” the lawmakers wrote.

The letter urges DOD to consider using mandatory traffic-mitigation measures, such as alternative work schedules and telecommuting, to avoid failing levels of service at key intersections. The delegation also asks the department to brief them on measures it will take to reduce congestion around the Mark Center should DOD-generated traffic exacerbate conditions on local roads surrounding the site.

Read the story in the Examiner.

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