Richmond Highway BRT gets $10 million funding boost
Fairfax County’s Richmond Highway Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project will receive a $10 million funding boost in the upcoming fiscal year, which starts July 1.
According to a June 21 press release from the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC), Richmond Highway BRT was one of 13 projects recently approved for funding in FY 2024-2025 by Virginia's Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB). The projects, which NVTC had recommended for CTB approval, are part of NVTC’s I-395/95 Commuter Choice program, which uses revenue from toll lanes to support efforts to reduce traffic congestion.
The NVTC selected the 13 transportation projects from a total of 16 applicants following a competitive application process in which projects were ranked and scored as to how well they supported Commuter Choice program goals. Out of 100 maximum points, Richmond Highway BRT scored a 77 based on a combination of technical merit (64/75 points), annualized cost effectiveness (13/20 points) and applicant preference (0/5 points). NVTC also solicited public comment on the projects; respondents’ opinions about BRT were nearly evenly split, positive to negative.
The Fairfax County Department of Transportation originally had requested $20 million in Commuter Choice funding to help finance the construction of the 7-mile, 9-station BRT system between Huntington Metro Station and Fort Belvoir. According to NVTC, a second $10 million allocation for BRT is expected to be included in the FY 2026-2027 Commuter Choice Program of Projects. Funding for those projects is slated for approval in June 2025, said an NVTC spokesperson, but will not be official until that time.
Richmond Highway BRT and the dozen other funded Commuter Choice projects are projected to save commuters over $4 million in annual fuel costs, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 76% and save 138,000 hours in delays each year, said NVTC.