Airport authority near DC to assume control of toll road

| 12/21/2006

 The Dulles Toll Road will soon become part of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, officials said this week.

State officials in Virginia will begin handing over control of the 14-mile toll road to the Washington, DC-area authority on or before Dec. 29, according to the Washington Post.

The process will take months to pan out.

The authority intends to use toll revenue to complete several phases of a $4 billion rail extension to the Dulles International Airport.

Officials are awaiting the results of a $3.5 million study to show the viability of putting the rail extension underground. That proposal has drawn opposition.

Toll revenue from the Dulles Toll Road used to go into the state's general fund, but in the future, the revenue will remain in the corridor, officials told the Post.

Tolls were increased by 25 cents in May 2006, and another 25-cent increase is proposed for 2010.

The proposed rail extension won't be complete until about 2015.

The Dulles Toll Road - not to be confused with the Dulles Greenway, which is also a toll road - is an eight-lane connector linking Washington, DC, traffic with the airport via the Greenway and the Capital Beltway.