Park and ride expansion set to begin

Local News

A park and ride in near Interstate 81 is getting a major expansion.

According to the Virginia Department of Transportation, construction is set to begin this week at the Exit 140 park and ride on Route 311.

Commuters say it has been a popular place to catch the bus or meet a friend to carpool. But they also say sometimes, the park and ride can get a bit crowded. 

“I was taking some classes where I had to be there in the afternoon, and we were just parking on the grass because there was nowhere to park,” said Emmitt Adkins, who uses the park and ride to take the bus to Virginia Tech.

Adkins said he welcomes plans to add more spaces.

“I’ve used park and rides more and more and more since I’ve been commuting more,” Adkins said. “I think it will be used.”

The project will more than double the parking capacity and add features like new sidewalks, lighting and a commuter shelter, according to VDOT officials.

During construction, the number of parking spaces will be reduced by half, VDOT has announced. 

But commuters we spoke with said it’s a headache they are willing to deal with, knowing more parking spaces will be available in the future.

“It’ll be rough, but it’s pretty much a first come, first serve basis, so if you get here early in the morning, it’s not a bad idea,” said Ron Miller, a commuter.

“If it’s got to happen, it’s got to happen,” Adkins said. “It needs the expansion.”

The project is expected to be completed this fall, according to VDOT. 

Officials say the number of parking spaces will be reduced by half starting the first week of April until the project is finished. VDOT urges drivers to plan accordingly.

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