Subdivision Street Regulations




Overview of proposed changes to Subdivision Street Regulations and relationship to the Neighborhood Model




Tucker, Foley, Graham, Kamptner






June 2, 2004


ACTION:                            INFORMATION:         X



  ACTION:                          INFORMATION: 











In 2003, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) formed a committee of local government and development group representatives to consider changes to the VDOT Subdivision Street Regulations (VDOT – SSR).  In part, that effort was initiated as a result of concerns expressed by the High Growth Coalition, of which Albemarle County is a member.  The High Growth Coalition’s concerns centered on the inflexibility of the current regulations with regard to a type of development called “New Urbanism”, “Neotraditional”, or “Traditional Neighborhood Development.”   Albemarle County’s Neighborhood Model includes many of the same features found in those development types.   County staff has served on this committee and attempted to have the regulations better accommodate the Neighborhood Model. While staff believes significant improvements to the regulations have been proposed, some issues were not addressed as staff had hoped. 


As a result of the committee’s work, VDOT is now proposing changes to the Subdivision Street Regulations that will resolve many of the concerns that complicated use of the Neighborhood Model.  Public comment is being received through the end of June. Following public comment, the proposed regulations will be considered for adoption by the Commonwealth Transportation Board.  Assuming the proposed regulations are adopted as proposed, the changes would become effective in January 2005. 



Goal: 2.1 Protect and/or preserve the County’s rural character.  Part of the objective is a strategy for addressing the long term transportation need.

Goal: 3.3 Develop and implement policies that address the County's growth and urbanization while continuing to enhance the factors that contribute to the quality of life in the County.  The proposed change to the regulations will enhance the County’s ability to addressing emerging infrastructure needs. 



The attachment provides VDOT’s summary of the proposed changes to the current regulations. The following changes were considered the most significant by staff for implementation of the Neighborhood Model and addressing urbanization in the County.



Staff notes the following as issues that were not addressed to our satisfaction:



Staff believes the proposed changes provide many of the desired features for implementation of the Neighborhood Model.  The remaining issues will probably not be possible until VDOT gains more experience with this type of development.   Staff believes it is important to recognize that VDOT is being challenged by these changes.  Effectively, VDOT is being asked to think more like a city and less like a state transportation agency in how it manages the secondary road program.  That represents a significant change in the organization’s mission.  How well these changes are communicated down within VDOT will likely prove to be the biggest challenge in the near term.   



This item is for information only.   Staff does not consider it necessary for the Board to provide a resolution in support of the proposed changes. 


Background and Summary of Changes
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