Bi-County Parkway debate fueled by research from both sides

One of our regular readers brought to our attention an issue that we haven’t been covering: Northern Virginia’s proposed Bi-County Parkway. The parkway would connect Prince William and Loudoun counties, but it has sparked an impassioned debate about our region’s growth trends.

On the one side, the Coalition for Smarter Growth has done research that says that the parkway would create more sprawl, congestion, and traffic. CSG released the findings of a study on the subject last week and proposed a “common-sense, comprehensive alternative.” (CSG, 7/17)

On the other side, the 2030 Group – led by developer Bob Buchanan – commissioned a report from GMU’s Stephen Fuller which determined that our region’s continued growth will include a big increase in car use. The group is using this finding to support their push for the parkway. (WaPo, 7/21)

Here’s more context for the debate – the Washington Post’s coverage since September 2012. We’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject in the comment section. What are the pros and cons? (The good and the bad, not the professionals and convicts.)

ENVIRONMENT | The Montgomery County Council speaks for the trees! Newly passed measures require that new trees be planted when old ones are cut down. When trees are cut down due to new home construction, for example, builders have to replace each tree with three new ones. (WaPo, 7/24)

WORKFORCE | Opinion: Former D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams has weighed in on the living wage bill. He calls for Mayor Gray to veto the bill and reiterates some points that have been made before against the bill. But he also adds a new perspective by calling into question the District’s integrity (WaPo, 7/20):

[T]he bill sends the message that the District can’t be relied on to cut a deal and stick to it. Our government was founded on a baseline of settled expectations. Every public-private partnership relies on this. A business investor should have confidence that when she makes a deal with the mayor and city council, the agreement will be the same on Day 1 and on Day 45.

– As Maryland makes the switch to the Common Core standards, newly released data show that almost every one of the state’s counties saw test scores drop for elementary and middle schoolers. Montgomery County experienced the biggest drop. (WaPo, 7/24)

– Former Washington Teachers’ Union President Nathan Saunders lost reelection to Elizabeth Davis earlier this month. So now he’s calling for the election to be voided and has filed an official appeal. (GGE, 7/24)

YOUTH | Poverty Hurts Kids More Than Being Born to Moms on Cocaine (Atlantic, 7/24) That headline sums it up, but it probably oversimplifies things. Moms on cocaine definitely hurt kids, too.

Yesterday, former congressman and current NYC mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner tried to squash a new scandal by admitting with certitude that he was involved in more explicit internet chats. A year after he resigned and was really, really, super sorry.

For this particular incident, he used the hilarious pseudonym “Carlos Danger” to try to avoid getting caught (again). The good folks at Slate have created a name generator so that everyone can have a name as cool as Carlos Danger. Try it out! And you can start calling me “Antonio Death.”

2 thoughts on “Bi-County Parkway debate fueled by research from both sides”

  1. Thanks for presenting this issue. Just as clarification, the Coalition for Smarter Growth was one of several groups that commissioned the report. The Coalition and the Piedmont Environmental Council have both been working for the past several years to educate residents and policymakers about the impacts of the proposed road and to present more sensible alternatives to addressing traffic congestion in the I-66 corridor.

    1. Thanks for the clarification – and I apologize for the mistake. I’ll update readers tomorrow.

      – Christian

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