The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) in the US has revealed plans for a $1bn road project in the north of the state to ease traffic congestion along I-95 and the Capital Beltway.

The Interstate 95 high occupancy vehicle/high occupancy toll (HOV/HOT) lanes project will create 29 miles of HOV/HOT lanes on I-95 from Garrisonville Road in Stafford County to Edsall Road on I-395 in Fairfax County.

It includes the construction of two reversible HOV/HOT lanes from Route 610/Garrisonville Road in Stafford County to Route 234 in Dumfries, and a HOV ramp at the Mark Centre site at Interstate 395 and Seminary Road.

Work also involves widening existing HOV lanes from two lanes to three for 14 miles from Prince William Parkway to Springfield Interchange and improvements to two HOV lanes for six miles from Route 234 to Prince William Parkway.

Construction on the ramp will begin in early 2012, and will be complete in three years, while construction of the 14-mile HOT lanes project on I-495 is more than 50% complete and the lanes will open to traffic by early 2013.

The VDOT has initiated an environmental review for the HOV/HOT lanes project and is advancing studies to support the extension of HOV/HOT lanes on I-95 south of Route 610 into Spotsylvania County.