Commonwealth Transportation Board awards $101 million contract for I-81 Staunton-area widening

Interstate 81

I-81 Staunton
Interstate 81 Sign and Staunton Sign

STAUNTON – The Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) on March 29 awarded a $101 million design-build contract to Kokosing Construction Company Inc. of Westerville, Ohio, for the widening of Interstate 81 between exits 221 and 225 in Augusta County near Staunton.

This project will improve operational safety and travel reliability along I-81 northbound and southbound between mile marker 221.45 and 225.6. Specific improvements include:

  • One additional northbound lane from the Route 250 (Jefferson Highway) on-ramp at exit 222 to the Route 262 (Woodrow Wilson Parkway) off-ramp at exit 225.
  • One additional southbound lane from the Route 262 on-ramp at exit 225 to approximately 1,200 feet south of the I-81 bridge over the I-81 southbound / I-64 eastbound ramp.
  • Widening and deck replacement for five bridges within the project limits.

The design-builder is responsible for completing the design of the project, acquiring any needed right of way and easements, relocating utilities, acquiring necessary environmental permits, and constructing the project. Construction is expected to begin in fall 2023 and take about four years to complete.

“These improvements will certainly make I-81 safer and less congested through the Staunton area,” said I-81 Program Delivery Director Dave Covington. “We are excited about this partnership with the Kokosing team, which has already helped deliver some major transportation projects across the Commonwealth.”

The additional I-81 travel lanes will primarily be constructed to the inside, along the median, allowing the Virginia Department of Transportation to utilize existing right of way.

During most phases of construction, the design-build contractor will maintain two I-81 northbound and southbound travel lanes. Nighttime and overnight lane closures are possible during some portions of the work including bridge construction and concrete barrier installation. Motorists should expect 24/7 shoulder closures and be alert for heavy equipment moving in and out of the work zone. All work is weather permitting.

More details about the Staunton-area widening project, including a video and podcast, are found at:

The project is part of the I-81 Corridor Improvement Program (CIP), which aims to improve safety, increase reliability and foster economic growth along the 325-mile corridor. The I-81 CIP was approved by the Commonwealth Transportation Board, funded by the Virginia General Assembly and signed into law in spring 2019. Additional information about the program is at

The VDOT Staunton District serves Frederick, Shenandoah, Clarke, Warren, Page, Rockingham, Augusta, Highland, Rockbridge, Alleghany and Bath counties.

Obtain traffic alerts and traveler information by dialing 511 or visiting For other assistance, call the VDOT Customer Service Center, available 24 hours-a-day, seven days a week. Citizens can dial 1-800-FOR- ROAD (1-800-367-7623) from anywhere in the state to report road hazards, ask transportation questions, or get information related to Virginia’s roads.

The VDOT Staunton District is on Facebook and Twitter. Follow VDOT statewide accounts on Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and YouTube. The VDOT Web page is


Last updated: July 19, 2024

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