CHAPTER 142

FORMERLY SENATE BILL NO. 432

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTERS 121 AND 469, VOLUME 56, DELAWARE LAWS, AND CHAPTER 299, VOLUME 57, DELAWARE LAWS, RELATING TO CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS AND EXPENDITURES, BY REMOVING CERTAIN RESTRICTIONS ON THE EXPENDITURE OF FUNDS ALLOCATED FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE WEST DOVER BYPASS INCLUDING THE CAMDEN TO FREDERICA CONNECTION, AND BY MANDATING THE CONSTRUCTION THEREOF.

WHEREAS, the safety of the travelling public is endangered by the lack of adequate North-South highway facilities in the greater Dover area; and

WHEREAS, in the last ten years traffic on Route 13 through the Dover area has increased from an average of 13,000 vehicles per day to an average of 44,000 vehicles per day with peaks in summer months exceeding 60,000 vehicles per day, with anticipated averages of 62,000 vehicles per day by 1985; and

WHEREAS, the reportable accidents in 1970 totalled 419 on U. S. Route 13 in the Dover area; and

WHEREAS, the location of a bypass on Route 13 around the City of Dover has been under consideration since 1958; and

WHEREAS, in 1959, in 1968, and in 1970, nationally recognized engineering and planning firms made independent studies to determine the need and proper location of a Dover Bypass; and

WHEREAS, the above mentioned engineering firms did in each instance recommend a location west of Dover; and

WHEREAS, the Kent County Regional Planning Commission, in 1971, independently, undertook a Transportation Study for Kent County conducted by a nationally known planning consultant whose recommendations did coincide and reaffirm the alignment recommended in the three previous studies; and

WHEREAS, endorsements approving and concurring in a bypass West of Dover have been ratified by the State Planning Office in 1964 and again in 1969, the City Council of Dover in 1969, the City of Dover Planning Commission in 1969, and the State Development Department in 1969; and

WHEREAS, the State Highway Department members in regular meetings on February 8, 1967, again on July 12, 1967, and again on March 5, 1970, did approve the westerly bypass corridor; and

WHEREAS, following the public meeting called by the Governor on March 1, 1971, the Council on Highways, which was authorized by the General Assembly, after lengthy discussion, as the body to make the decision on the location of major highway routes, voted four to one to reaffirm the previous decisions of the State Highway Department members; and

WHEREAS, the alignment for the West Dover Bypass is consistent with the planning of the City of Dover, the Transportation Plan of Kent County, and the Comprehensive State Plan of the State Planning Office; and

WHEREAS, controlled access highways designed according to modern standards enhance public safety by decreasing the accident rates by approximately two-thirds; and

WHEREAS, environmental studies have shown that construction of the West Dover Bypass will not adversely affect ecological balances or the environment in the area of the proposed bypass.

NOW, THEREFORE,

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware (three-fourths of all the members elected to each House thereof concurring therein):

Section 1. Chapter 469, Volume 56, Laws of Delaware, is amended by deleting Section 20 thereof in its entirety.

Section 2. Chapter 469, Volume 56, Laws of Delaware, is amended further by deleting Section 22 thereof in its entirety.

Section 3. Chapter 299, Volume 57, Laws of Delaware, is amended by deleting Section 20 thereof in its entirety.

Section 4. Chapter 121, Volume 56, Laws of Delaware, is amended by deleting. Section 21 thereof in its entirety.

Section 5. The Department of Highways and Transportation is directed to proceed without delay with the planning and design of the West Dover Bypass, including the Frederica-to-Camden Connection, along the alignment approved by the State Highway Department in March of 1970.

Approved June 22, 1971.