COUNTY OF ALBEMARLE

 

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

 

AGENDA TITLE:

Downtown Crozet Streetscape Enhancement Project, TEA-21, Transportation Enhancement Program Grant  

 

SUBJECT/PROPOSAL/REQUEST:

Public hearing and adoption of resolution endorsing the Downtown Crozet Streetscape Project for a TEA 21 Transportation Enhancement Grant application

 

STAFF CONTACT(S):

Messrs. Tucker, Foley, Davis, Kamptner, Graham, Benish, Kelsey, and Wade

 

 

LEGAL REVIEW:   Yes

 

 

AGENDA DATE:

November 4, 2009

 

ACTION:      X                          INFORMATION: 

 

CONSENT AGENDA:

  ACTION:                                 INFORMATION: 

 

 

ATTACHMENTS:         Yes

 

 

REVIEWED BY:  

 

 

BACKGROUND:

Congress created the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) in 1991 to address growing concerns about air quality, open space, and traffic congestion. One of several programs in ISTEA (now referred to as “TEA-21”) dealt with Transportation Enhancements. This program is the first Federal initiative to focus on enhancing the travel experience and fostering the quality of life in American communities. The Transportation Enhancement Program fosters more choices for travel by providing funding for sidewalks, bike lanes, and the conversion of abandoned railroad corridors into trails. Communities may also use the program to revitalize local and regional economies by restoring eligible historic buildings, renovating streetscapes, or providing transportation museums and visitor centers. Many communities also use the program to acquire, restore and preserve scenic or historic sites.

 

The County has received a total of $300,000 in TEA-21 Enhancement grants for Phases I and II ($150,000 each) of a three phase program for sidewalk/streetscape improvements in Crozet. Phase I includes the intersection of Rt. 240 and Rt. 810. The Phase I improvements have been completed using County funds to expedite construction of the project and the TEA-21 grant has been transferred to Phase II of the project.

 

The Phase II enhancement project is within the area along Crozet Avenue between Tabor Street and the Blue Goose Building.  Proposed Phase II construction improvements include the following elements:

 

·                     Remove utility poles and overhead wires along Crozet Avenue. Provide new underground service feeds from the overhead lines along Carter Street and from the new underground lines along Main Street and within the existing alleys on the east side.

 

·                     Selectively demolish existing deteriorated curbs and sidewalks.  Demolish existing retaining walls on the east side of Crozet Avenue in front of the residences and construct new walls as required for sidewalks and pavement widening for bicycles and vehicles.

 

·                     Create a downtown gateway feature at the Tabor Street intersection by constructing a pedestrian terrace with concrete pavers, a stone retaining wall, street furniture, lights, and ornamental plantings.

 

·                     Construct new concrete curb and gutter, sidewalks and stormwater utility improvements at the end of Tabor Street and along both sides of Crozet Avenue.  Extend stormwater utilities to the discharge points south of Tabor Street and south of Jarmans Gap Road.

 

·                     Establish a new variable width Crozet Avenue street section to accommodate north and south travel lanes, left turn lanes at intersections, and bike lanes in some areas.

 

·                     Upgrade pavements and sidewalks at the Jarmans Gap Road intersection.

 

·                     Construct a new intersection to serve the future extension of “New Main Street” and to access properties to the west.

 

·                     Install concrete pavers at all corners to create enhanced pedestrian areas and install concrete paver crosswalks and accessibility ramps at the Tabor Street, Jarmans Gap Road, and New Main Street intersections.

 

·                     Construct street-side bio-filters along both sides of Crozet Avenue and install ornamental bio-filter trees, shrubs, and groundcovers.

 

·                     Install new pedestrian-scale, decorative light fixtures and street furniture along both sides of Crozet Avenue.

 

Staff is now preparing a $250,000 grant proposal for the construction of the Phase II and III improvements. The Phases II and III plans are 95% complete. The purpose for this application is to request grant funds for Phase III, the last eligible phase of the streetscape project. VDOT is currently proposing policy changes to the Transportation Enhancement Program. These changes will focus on completing existing projects, promoting core transportation functions and modifying the existing policy to better enable projects to reach completion. These are expected to be approved in October/November 2009. If approved, these policy changes will support previously funded multi-phase projects such as the Crozet Streetscape Enhancement Project.  As part of the grant application process for Phase III, the County is required to hold a public hearing and adopt a resolution committing to pay the minimum twenty (20) percent of the total project cost. Grant requests are due to VDOT by December 1, 2009.

 

STRATEGIC PLAN:

3.1 Make the County a Safe and Healthy Community in which citizens feel secure to live, work and play.

 

DISCUSSION:

The Phase III enhancement project is within the area along Crozet Avenue between the Blue Goose Building and the intersection at “The Square”.  Proposed Phase III construction improvements include the following elements (Attachment A):

·         Selectively demolish existing deteriorated curbs and sidewalks.

·         Construct stormwater utilities along Crozet Avenue with new curb inlets and pipes.  Connect to Phase II utility system.

·         Establish a new variable width Crozet Avenue street section to accommodate north and south travel lanes, a left turn lane at New Main Street, and bike lanes in some areas.

·         Construct new concrete curb and gutter and variable width concrete sidewalks along both sides of Crozet Avenue.

·         Upgrade existing vehicular entrance at the Dry Cleaning building and reconfigure the existing parking area.

·         Upgrade existing vehicular entrance to the Fabulous Foods parking area.

·         Upgrade existing vehicular drop-off area in front of the Rice and Rice building.

·         Eliminate the existing right-hand turn lane into the Virginia National Bank property and construct new curb and gutter and concrete sidewalks.

·         Install concrete paver crosswalks and accessibility ramps at the vehicular entrance to the Virginia National Bank property and at “The Square” intersection.

·         Construct rectangular, street-side bio-filters along both sides of Crozet Avenue and install ornamental bio-filter trees, shrubs, and groundcovers.

·         Install new pedestrian-scale, decorative light fixtures and street furniture along both sides of Crozet Avenue.

 

The total cost of these improvements is estimated to be about $2,500,000. Staff is proposing to request $250,000 in Enhancement Grant funding for Phase III, which would require a minimum 20 percent County match ($50,000).  The County has programmed sufficient funds in the CIP to cover this balance of the project and the match for this grant application.  If this grant request is awarded, the County will have a total of $550,000 in grant funds ($300,000 from Phases I and II) to allocate towards the completion of this project. This total grant award is generally consistent with the County’s original three-phase grant proposal.  Staff anticipates that this phase of the project will be advertised by the end of December 2009, depending on the dedication of the utility easements for the utility relocation and the right-of-way and easement dedications for the streetscape construction.

 

BUDGET IMPACT:

If awarded, the TEA-21 Enhancement Grant would provide an additional $250,000 toward the streetscape project.  The County has programmed sufficient funds in the Neighborhood Master Plan and Crozet Streetscape CIP programs to cover the balance of the project, including the $50,000 match for this grant application. 

 

RECOMMENDATIONS:

After holding the public hearing, staff recommends the Board of Supervisors adopt the attached resolution to apply for the TEA 21 Enhancement Grant for the Downtown Crozet streetscape improvement project.

 

 

ATTACHMENTS:

A- Location Map and Improvements

B - Resolution

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