After 30 years of talk about the Meadowcreek Parkway, it is finally making headway. Senator John Warner has agreed to help fully fund the $25 million parkway.
"I've only been involved for three [years] but, I'm probably as excited as somebody who has been working on it for 38 years," said Harrison Rue, of the Thomas Jefferson Planning Commission.
Rue is excited about the long-awaited Meadowcreek Parkway thanks to the efforts of Senator Warner. Officials said the two-mile long parkway extends from Rio Road to Melbourne Road, through McIntire Park and ends at the 250 bypass.
After 30 years of talk about the Meadowcreek Parkway, it is finally making headway. Senator John Warner has agreed to help fully fund the $25 million.
Harrison Rue said it will be beneficial in more ways than one.
"[The interchange] will make it actually easier to get around after it's built on Route 250 than it is right now because you'll have free-flow of all the traffic on Route 250 that currently has to stop. And then it will make it much easier to come in on Meadowcreek [Parkway] into Downtown as well," said Rue.
Weldon Showalter is one of the many Charlottesville residents that will benefit from the parkway. This semi-retired sign maker lives on Park Street and knows all too well about the congestion. He said the traffic is so bad he has a hard time pulling out of his driveway.
"You figure a car goes by here every two seconds. That's entirely too much traffic and of course we've all hoped that the parkway would be built to take some of this off," said Showalter.
But, Showalter is still skeptical. His current sign that sits in front of his home says the Meadowcreek Parkway "died of old age while in the planning stage." He said it's taken over 37 years to build and he has to see it to believe it. "I've lost hope, that's why I have a little fun with my signs," said Showalter.
But the planning commission is hopeful although it will take years to complete. "Construction of the parkway is funded and ready to start construction...in 2008, that's how long it takes to pull a road together. The good news is this funding will enable us to do the interchange at the same time," said Rue.
Officials say Meadowcreek Parkway will make the park more accessible to high school and to downtown.