Transportation referendum set tonight

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Staff report

Residents will be able to learn more about the transportation referendum during an informational meeting at Nansemond River High School at 7 p.m. today.

The referendum, which will be appearing on the Nov. 5 election ballot; is proposing a 1-cent sales tax increase across Hampton Roads to fund six major road projects in the region over the next two decades. The tax increase will generate $7.5 billion to expand the bridge-tunnels and the connecting interstates and put tunnels and bridges in place for a future rail or mass transit link between the Southside and the Peninsula.

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Specific projects include:

– Upgrading Route 460 to interstate standards;

– Hampton Roads’ third crossing;

– Widening of Interstate 64 on the Peninsula;

– A second tube to the Midtown Tunnel and Martin Luther King Freeway extension;

– Southeastern Parkway and Greenbelt

– Funding for a mass transit project;

Plans call for the tax to be dissolved in approximately 30 years, when all six projects are paid off.

The Suffolk meeting is being sponsored by the Yes Campaign, an organization promoting passage of the referendum.

City leaders have gone on record supporting the referendum. Recently, the Suffolk City Council adopted a resolution its passage.