Prince William County planners will recommend that the Board of County Supervisors endorse two specific plans for proposed highways: the Manassas National Battlefield Bypass connecting Sudley Road to the Route 234 Bypass north and a tri-county parkway from Godwin Drive to the Fairfax County line.
The Commonwealth Transportation Board, which establishes policies for the Virginia transportation system, sought recommendations from all affected jurisdictions.
The supervisors will take up the issue at a meeting Tuesday after hearing presentations from the Prince William Department of Public Works, County Executive Craig S. Gerhart said.
The highways are a long way from being built. There is no money designated for the roads, which environmentalists are fighting, although the purpose of the bypass is meant to protect the historic battlefield by relocating Routes 29 and 234 out of the park.
Stewart Schwartz, executive director of the Coalition for Smarter Growth, said government should invest in widening Interstate 66 and improving existing local roads. New roads will lead to more suburban sprawl, he said.
"It's more about development speculation than it is about traffic," Schwartz said.
The advice of Prince William county planners for the tri-county parkway, which would connect Prince William to Loudoun and Fairfax counties, follows that of other counties. The proposed parkway would stretch 11.7 miles, from Route 50 near Dulles through a bit of Fairfax County in Bull Run Regional Park and east of the Manassas National Battlefield Park, ending at the Route 234 Bypass and Route 28 interchange in Prince William.
The favored route, which is the most expensive at $548 million, is known as the Comprehensive Plan Alternative because all three counties have similar routes in their land-use plans.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has studied the route and found that it could have a bigger impact on wetlands and streams than other proposed routes, such as two that would connect the I-66/Route 234 interchange to the Loudoun County line. The Corps would probably not issue a permit for construction of the road as currently planned, and the Federal Highway Administration would not provide federal financing, according to federal and state road officials.
The battlefield bypass has more support from all levels of government.
The Federal Highway Administration and the National Park Service selected the route called Alternative D, which "is the most consistent with the county's Comprehensive Plan," according to a public works report recommending the new four-lane road.