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July 19, 2007 12:35 am


Quantico Marine Corps Base recommends widening a section of Russell Road among other road improvements in preparation for an influx of new workers by 2011.

And the military expects the community outside the base to chip in.

Nearly 3,000 jobs are shifting to the base as part of the federal Base Realignment and Closure Commission's plan. That's in addition to the 16,000 people who already live or work on the base.

The new jobs will be located west of Interstate 95 and U.S. 1.

Stafford and Prince William counties have been eager to learn how the jobs will impact local roads.

Yesterday, the Commonwealth Transportation Board got an update on the base's traffic recommendations.

The suggestions included:

Widening a section of Russell Road from two lanes to four lanes west of Interstate 95, leading to the new job sites.

Installing traffic signals at busy Russell Road intersections, including at U.S. 1 and at Interstate 95 on-ramps and off-ramps.

Adding a second right turn lane to the I-95 southbound off-ramp.

Quantico has learned 51 percent of the new employees live within commuting distance of the base, which it defines as living in Virginia, said John Rosewarne, Quantico's director of business performance and base realignment.

BRAC shifted the jobs to Quantico so five of the military's investigative agencies will be located in the same place.

These agencies are mostly based in Northern Virginia, with several in Maryland. Quantico believes many workers will reverse commute from their homes north of the base. This means that in the mornings, they will exit Interstate 95 south at Exit 148, Russell Road.

That's why Quantico recommends adding a second off-ramp lane.

Rosewarne said the biggest traffic challenge will be moving vehicles efficiently at the base's entrances.

However, there could be still a traffic impact on two Stafford roads.

To that end, Rosewarne said additional turn lanes are recommended at the intersection of southbound U.S. 1 and Telegraph Road, plus new turn lanes at the intersection of Onville Road and State Route 610, as well as traffic signal phasing.

Cord Sterling, a member of the CTB and Stafford resident, asked if Quantico would apply for Defense Access Road funds to defray the cost of the Telegraph Road and Route 610 improvements.

An earlier presentation on these federal funds stated a base must create a 100 percent increase in traffic on area roads--a doubling--before these funds can be considered as a way to pay for road improvements.

Rosewarne said Quantico would not be applying.

"Who's going to pay for that?" Sterling asked.

"The civilian community," Rosewarne said.

"Do they know it?" Sterling asked.

Kelly Hannon: 540/374-5436

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