Virginia plans to expand commuter parking in the Fredricksburg area to help meet demand along the congested Interstate 95 corridor.

Secretary of Transportation Sean T. Connaughton announced the plans Thursday morning to add up to 3,000 new parking spaces. However, at least some of the spaces won’t be constructed for several years.

 “Commuting to work is hard enough without worrying about whether you will find a parking space to meet your bus, carpool, vanpool or train,” Connaughton said in a statement. “This investment will bring peace of mind to the hard-working residents of the Fredericksburg area, who seek to reduce congestion by sharing a ride.”

The spaces will be added in three locations. Two of the sites are current connection points for carpools, commuter buses and sluggers, who catch riders with drivers heading north allowing them to use HOV lanes.

• 1,000 spaces at a Virginia Department of Transportation lot at Staffordborough Boulevard near Garrisonville Road in Stafford County. Design work is scheduled to begin this spring, with completion dates to be determined.

• 1,000 spaces at a VDOT commuter lot at Gordon Road and Route 3 in Spotsvlvania County. Design work to expand the existing lot, which has 600 spaces, is scheduled to begin in 2012, with construction occurring in 2017.

• 1,000 spaces at a planned Virginia Railway Express train station in Spotsylvania.

“We have waited long enough to expand the number of commuter parking spaces at these locations, so close to I-95,” said Commonwealth Transportation Board member Cord Sterling, who represents VDOT’s Fredericksburg District. “There simply is insufficient capacity to meet the desire on the part of Fredericksburg area residents to carpool and ride the VRE  saving them time and money,”