National, State and Regional Citizens Groups Join I-81 Lawsuit

Seven citizens’ organizations – National Trust for Historic Preservation, Scenic Virginia, APVA Preservation Virginia, Virginia Organizing Project, Valley Conservation Council, Rockbridge Area Conservation Council and Sierra Club – Thursday joined a federal lawsuit to block plans to widen I-81 to eight or more lanes throughout most of western Virginia.

The new parties to the lawsuit join Larry Allamong, a Shenandoah County farmer, the Shenandoah Valley Network and the Coalition for Smarter Growth in a legal action lodged on December 17, 2007 in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Charlottesville.

The 10 plaintiffs are asking the court to prevent the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) from allowing the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) to move forward with the I-81 expansion project until the agencies have corrected the plan’s fundamental flaws.