Tamara Neale 804-786-6458
Ted Pile Alpha , 276-619-4463
Jan. 13, 2006
VDOT ANNOUNCES NEW PARTNERSHIP
FOR COALFIELDS EXPRESSWAY
Southwest Virginia coal companies to advance next stage of project
“VDOT’s agreement with Pioneer and Alpha begins the next chapter in the development of the Coalfields Expressway,” said Whirley. “Building on the effective development and engineering work by KBR, Pioneer and Alpha will use coal recovery opportunities to significantly lower the cost of building the base roadbed for the project.”
Under the agreement, Pioneer and Alpha will assume all the obligations and responsibilities for the next phase of development of the Coalfields Expressway project under the PPTA. KBR recently completed preliminary design and engineering for Section A of the corridor through the PPTA process. VDOT, Pioneer and Alpha will work to modify the comprehensive agreement to reflect the highway being built in conjunction with the development of Pioneer and Alpha coal reserves. In addition, the parties will seek to work with the Federal Highway Administration for the use of federal funds on the project.
“This brings the Coalfields Expressway an important step closer to reality, which is critical to the economic development of Southwest Virginia,” said Governor Mark R. Warner. “I want to specifically acknowledge the bi-partisan efforts of the entire southwestern legislative delegation - the strong support of Senators Wampler and Puckett and Delegates Kilgore, Phillips, Johnson, and Bowling, along with former Delegate Stump. Their dedication to this project has helped keep it moving forward.”
“We are pleased to become a vital participant in the development of the Coalfields Expressway and excited about the opportunity to help lower the construction costs in conjunction with removal of the coal reserves throughout the counties,” said Clyde Stacy, representing Pioneer Group, Inc.
“Utilizing our expertise in the construction of the King Coal Highway in West Virginia and as a major employer in Southwest Virginia, we are pleased to participate in the Coalfields Expressway project,” said Michael J. Quillen, president and CEO of Alpha Natural Resources Inc. “We understand the importance of building this highway system and opening up the coalfield region for successful economic development for years to come.”
“KBR is proud of the role we have played on this very important transportation project,” said Bruce Stanski, executive vice president, KBR, Government and Infrastructure. “The Coalfields Expressway is important to the region and it is off to a good, solid start. We remain
committed to the success of the project and stand ready to support VDOT and the people of Southwest Virginia in any way we can as it moves forward.”
The Coalfields Expressway will be a new four-lane highway stretching 51 miles from Pound in Wise County, through Dickenson and Buchanan counties. It will link with the West Virginia Coalfields Expressway near Paynesville, West Virginia. The cost estimate to build the project is $2.3 billion.
A videoconference briefing and event will be held Thursday, Jan. 19, in Southwest Virginia and Richmond to provide more information on the project and its latest developments. More details on the location and time will be released early next week.
Learn more about the Coalfields Expressway.
Information in VDOT news releases was accurate at the time the release was published. For the most current information about projects or programs, please visit the project or program Web pages. You may find those by searching by keyword in the search Virginia DOT box above.