David Clarke reported on transportation maintenance and concerns in Montgomery County during the Montgomery Board of Supervisors meeting, held Monday, Sept. 11.
Many Blacksburg residents were met with localized flooding, while other citizens in the county received greatly reduced rainfall totals.
“We’re trying to machine a lot of the gravel roads we can, when it’s not too dry…and then deal with some of the heavy rains that have been localized these last couple weeks,” Clarke said.
Clarke added that patching is going on in the Merrimac and Catawba communities, patching work is happening in Alleghany Springs and Catawba Road, and brush cutting in a variety of locations throughout Montgomery County.
Additional work was done on the six-year plan project, which involved the middle section of Craig Mountain Road receiving treatment.
Supervisor Darrell Sheppard shared concerns about improvements needed on Sterling Drive, which is under consideration for surface treatment. A continuing complaint concerning overhanging brush on McCoy Road was also directed to Clarke by Sheppard.
“I think hanging over the guard rail it’s pretty close to the road and then some places like down there next to Whitethorne Road, it’s, the trees overtake the road,” Sheppard said. “I mean they’re not hitting anything but they’re shading.”
Supervisor Todd King addressed concerns with Clarke about an ongoing conversation they have had regarding the speed limit on route 8 past the Shell gas station.
“I might save that for next time and do that, because I want to get, I’ll get the actual speed study…because they did look at it, and they got the reasoning in there,” Clarke said. “They look at kind of long sections, and in general, it’s a less populated section south of Riner. I know we could look at a more specific spot within a half a mile of there, and they’ve even been reluctant to change that.”
“You know, just my concerns and theirs, you know, that stretch of Route 8 is really curvy,” King said.
King also mentioned another speed study that had been previously proposed as well, between route 8 and Union Valley Road in Riner. Clarke said he would reach out to King and get more information, as well as following up on the proposed study with traffic engineering.
Supervisor and Vice Chair, Mary Biggs requested an update on the Interstate-81 project. According to Clarke, work will be continuing for several years with incremental sections occurring up to near the 116-mile marker, which goes over Franklin Street in Christiansburg. Advertisements have been published asking for public comment on the sections of I-81 from exits 143-150. A VDOT public hearing will be held at Lord Botetourt High School at 1435 Roanoke Road in Daleville from 5-7 p.m. Additional information about the proposed project to widen the seven miles of interstate can be found at www.roanokecountyva.gov.
Funding for this project was a concern with BOS Chair Sherri Blevins.
“I see with the General Assembly, with their amended budget, did we get money back in on 81? I know that was looking particularly at the projects at 143 to 150,” Blevins said.
County Administrator Craig Meadows followed up Blevins’ question, saying he believed this money did not get added back to the project. Blevins said a delay in funding for the project could potentially affect funding for future 81 projects impacting the Montgomery County district surrounding the interstate. Updates will be provided as the project continues.
In other business, the BOS unanimously approved the rezoning of a 122.6-acre parcel in the Mount Tabor area on Bradshaw Road. The property is currently zoned as Rural Residential (RR) with proffered conditions to Agricultural (A-1). The property was previously designated to be developed as a subdivision but that did not happen. The current buyers, Jennifer and Jeffrey Frayser, wish to develop a family subdivision consisting of three residential areas.
“In our analysis of the application, it does return the parcel back to its previous zoning designation that it held prior to 2008. It utilizes private infrastructure, so places no burden on the public system,” Justin Sanders, Montgomery County Senior Planner said. “The Planning Commission did recommend approval of the rezoning with a 7-0 vote, with two absences.”