Virginia Beach Transit Extension Study
HRT is conducting the Virginia Beach Transit Extension Study (VBTES) to examine the best transit options for a former freight rail right of way in Virginia Beach. The property runs from Newtown to Birdneck roads roughly parallel to Interstate 264. The study includes options for extending high-capacity transit services east of Birdneck Road to 19th Street at the Oceanfront and for service to the Laskin Road corridor.
In September 2013, the study reached a major milestone when it announced the conceptual cost estimates, operating and maintenance costs and the projected average daily boardings for service to Virginia Beach. Taken as a whole, these figures give the public an insight into what extending The Tide light rail – or bus rapid transit – into the resort city would cost.
The study is not complete. Additional information will be made public as soon as possible. To read the latest presentation, click here.
The formal study on light rail to the beach is expected to be ready for public review between the fourth quarter of 2013 and the early part of 2014. After public review and comment, the Virginia Beach City Council must then take formal action on the study by selecting what is called a Locally Preferred Alternative. The next steps are completing the final study and obtaining a Record of Decision.
- Improve access, operations and reliability of the public transportation system
- Provide a cost-effective, efficient travel option that connects residential and employment areas as well as recreational venues
- Implement service that helps manage growth in vehicle miles traveled and supports the development of sustainable and livable communities
- Support Virginia Beach economic development activities consistent with the City’s Comprehensive Plan and related land use strategies
- Support the tourism industry of Virginia Beach and the Hampton Roads region by providing an alternative to travel on congested roadways
- Support preservation and protection of the environment
This webpage will provide up-to-date information on the VBTES. HRT welcomes your input on the VBTES.