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Group's lawsuit over W.Va. 9 is dismissed

August 10, 2002

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Representatives from the West Virginia Department of Transportation announced Friday that the U.S. Court for the Northern District of West Virginia in Martinsburg has dismissed the case brought against federal and West Virginia officials concerning the Charles Town to Virginia state line section of W.Va. 9.

Judge W. Craig Broadwater found in favor of the Department of Transportation in ruling against the Route 9 Opposition Legal Fund and six other plaintiffs on Aug. 2, according to a WVDOT press release.

The transportation agency will resume construction of the new bridge over U.S. 340 on the Charles Town Bypass to Cattail Run project that was delayed by this lawsuit. The remaining projects are between Charles Town and the Virginia state line.

"We are committed to building an improved highway system in the Eastern Panhandle," Gov. Bob Wise said. "We are building a roadway that will be much safer for the residents and travelers of the area. We have been delayed with legal proceedings; however, we are moving forward toward meeting that goal."

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In the suit, the plaintiffs alleged the WVDOT, Federal Highway Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation violated the National Environmental Policy Act and Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act dealing with historic sites. The plaintiffs also alleged the transportation agencies failed to consider impacts to W.Va. 9 in Loudoun County, Va., according to the WVDOT press release.

Broadwater found the transportation agencies followed the proper procedures and performed the necessary analysis when reviewing alternatives and addressing NEPA and section 4(f) issues.

"With this ruling, we can now focus our attention on building a safer and more efficient roadway," Transportation Secretary/Commissioner Fred VanKirk said.

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