COUNTY OF ALBEMARLE
Advisory guidelines to VDoT for the review of property owner initiated and funded improvements to public roads.
Review guidelines to be used to review requests by property owners to pay for road improvements within VDoT right of way and/or the property owner’s land.
Messrs: Tucker, Foley, Davis, Cilimberg, Benish, Wade
LEGAL REVIEW: Yes
July 6, 2005
ACTION: X INFORMATION:
The Board of Supervisors requested staff to develop guidelines that set out how the County would like VDoT to review road improvements initiated and funded by a private property owner. Typically with this type of proposal, the property owner works directly with VDoT to complete major improvements to roads such as road realignments/relocations and paving of unpaved roads.
3.1 Make the County a Safe and Healthy Community in which citizens feel secure to live, work and play.
The Board of Supervisors requested that staff develop guidelines after a controversial paving project on Blenheim Road (Route 795) in the Spring of 2004. This project prompted staff and the public to evaluate how this type of project is processed by VDoT and the County’s role in the process. The Board’s concern with previous projects of this nature has centered around the desire to ensure that there would be an opportunity for the public and the Board to comment on the project and that the project is consistent with County policies.
VDoT does not have a written policy or guidelines at this time for reviewing property owner initiated projects. VDoT staff has indicated that this type of project does not happen frequently. Its current process requires a property owner to submit plans to work within VDoT’s rights-of-way. VDoT will then issue a permit to complete the work. The work must be within the property owner’s right-of-way and/or VDoT’s right-of-way. If the improvements are outside of these areas, the property owner must get an agreement from the other property owners to consent to the project or the project must proceed through the Six Year Secondary Road Plan process.
Staff suggests, along with VDoT’s concurrence, the following guidelines be used by VDoT to process requests by property owners for major improvements within VDoT rights of way, including the realignment/relocation of roads and the paving of unpaved roads.
1. VDoT shall contact the Albemarle County Department of Community Development when a request for a major road improvement (realignment/relocation and/or paving of an unpaved road) is received that would take place completely within the VDoT right of way and/or the property owner’s land.
2. The Resident Engineer will provide County staff basic information regarding the scope of the project. This information will include, but not be limited to, the location (with terminus points), length, type of improvements, and what additional properties are impacted. VDoT shall also provide its comments or concerns for the improvement.
3. An evaluation by County staff of the scope of the project and its consistency with County policies and the Comprehensive Plan will be provided to the Board of Supervisors. The Board will determine if area residents should be informed/notified of the proposed improvement. The notification can be by letter to area property owners, posting of signs along the subject road segment, and/or by a community meeting. The impacted area will be defined on a case by case basis.
4. Staff will compile and assess comments received from any public comment/input process and provide them to the Board of Supervisors. The Board will provide its recommendation on the proposed project to the VDoT resident engineer. If the Board of Supervisors supports the proposal, a resolution of support will be adopted by the Board and forwarded to VDoT.
Staff believes that the proposed guidelines establish a reasonable review process that will allow the County and the public an opportunity to review and comment on these types of improvement projects. VDoT has reviewed and supports the proposed guidelines.
If these guidelines are supported by the Board of Supervisors, staff will forward them to VDoT Residency and request that these guidelines be used for similar improvement projects in the future.
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