Midtown Tunnel 5K Run/Walk abruptly canceled due to impact on drivers

Posted at 12:50 PM, Aug 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-16 17:12:28-04

NORFOLK, Va. – The Midtown Tunnel 5K Run and Walk won’t be back for a second year.

Philip Shucet, the Elizabeth River Crossings CEO, made the announcement Tuesday.

In a press release, he said it had to do with the impact on drivers.

“Last year’s race commemorated the opening of the tunnel before it was in regular use. Now we have an obligation to the 2,500 to- 3,000 motorists who count on using the westbound Midtown Tunnel every Saturday morning,” said Philip Shucet, Elizabeth River Crossings CEO. “While canceling the race is disappointing, keeping the tunnel open and in full service on August 26 is our higher priority.”

The race was scheduled for Saturday morning, August 26th.

Shucet said the issue wasn't on his radar until Monday morning, leading to the last minute notice.

Runners are upset by the decision.

“I was disappointed, especially that they waited so long to tell us runners," Desiree Anderson, who ran in last year's race said.

Anderson also doesn't agree with the reaosning behind the cancellation.

“I think that’s a little bit of a fib, I can’t imagine that at 7:30 on a Saturday that, that many riders would go through," Anderson said.

Proceeds from the race were to benefit the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia.

ERC and the race sponsors are working together to donate to the food bank.

"We expected the food bank to net about $3,500  in terms of a donation and we are going to make sure they get a donation of $3,500 or more," Shucet explained.

Shucet said the race will not return in the future.