Now that the Potomac Rappahannock Transportation Commission, or PRTC, has its OmniRide Western Bus Maintenance and Storage Facility on Doan Drive, in the western end of the county, buses will not have to deadhead, or run without passengers after hours, between Manassas and the Woodbridge OmniRide facility.
The $50-million facility, which can store 100 buses, will help ease congestion along the Interstate 66 corridor, reduce deadheading expenses, expand bus service to support 4,000 park-and-ride spaces under construction along the corridor, allow for more efficient operations and support economic growth. The new facility will also allow PRTC to increase the size of its fleet to allow more people to park their cars and ride buses to reduce the number of cars on the road.
“This facility will permit us to provide our residents on the western end of the county, as well as the business community, with efficient, reliable, and safe OmniRide service as well as help reduce congestion. It will also permit OmniRide to grow its western service” said Prince William Supervisor Margaret Angela Franklin, who also serves as chair of the PRTC, at a recent ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open the facility.
The maintenance and storage facility will allow OmniRide to meet the demand of a growing region by providing better service along the corridor between Interstate 495 and U.S. 29 in Gainesville. “Our program is all about attaining and maintaining a state of good repair for our transit assets and improving the efficiency of our transit systems to better serve the citizens of the commonwealth and this facility does that, for OmniRide and for the region and for the I-66 corridor,” said Jennifer DeBruhl, chief of public transportation for the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation, or DRPT. “It’s eliminating the need to bring buses from Woodbridge to Manassas to start their day. It’s making for … better service for people who live in the western part of Prince William County by making that service more reliable.”
Money for the project came from the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, or NVTA, which contributed $16.5 million. DRPT contributed $10 million and the Federal Highway Administration contributed $7.7 million, while $11 million came from the Virginia Department of Transportation’s Transform I-66 Outside the Beltway, a program to improve the corridor between I-495 and Haymarket. Other federal earmarks accounted for $2.5 million in funding and PRTC, which receives funding from Prince William County, contributed $2 million.
“Prince William County is very proud to have been part of this worthwhile project and the continued expansion of transit service for all of our residents,” Franklin said.
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