The Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission published its annual report "A Year in Review" this month. The report highlights the CSPDC programs, projects and events that occurred over the past year. View the report HERE.
The CSPDC held its Annual Meeting and Dinner, August 17, 2015 at the Frontier Culture Museum in Staunton. More than 50 Commissioners, their guests and CSPDC staff attended the meeting. A presentation on the public transit system that operates in the Staunton, Augusta, and Waynesboro area was given by staff.
The Commission adopted the state-required Transit Development Plan and appointed members to serve on the Transit Advisory Committee. Commissioners were given a copy of "A Year in Review" - an annual report that highlights the CSPDC programs, projects and events that occurred over the past year.
Following the regular business meeting, attendees heard a presentation from keynote speaker, Matt Thornhill. Mr. Thornhill is Founder and President of the Boomer Project and Generations Matter. The topic of Mr. Thornhill's presentation was entitled, "The Future of Virginia's Cities and Counties" and focused on how generational dynamics will affect the future of communities in the Region.
A special thank you to the following sponsors who made the evening possible: The Berkley Group; Brown Edwards, Certified Public Accountants; Draper Aden Associates; and LCC Computers.
The Southern Economic Development Council (SEDC) awarded an annual Community Economic Development Award (CEDA) to the Fields of Gold Agritourism Program at an awards luncheon on July 27 in Savannah, GA. Bonnie Riedesel accepted the CEDA award on behalf of Fields of Gold. Submitted for the honor by the Shenandoah Valley Partnership (SVP), the Fields of Gold entry was the winner in the category of communities with more than 100,000 in population.
The CEDA program recognizes communities throughout a seventeen-state region for outstanding efforts in building their strength and viability through economic and community development programs. Visit www.fieldsofgold.org for more information on the award-winning program.
The Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission (CSPDC) adopted the Transit Development Plan (TDP) at their August 17, 2015 Annual Meeting. The TDP is a short-range plan that outlines the transit improvements intended during a six-year planning horizon; estimates what resources will be needed; and identifies potential funding options. The development of the CSPDC's TDP has been guided by a working group made up of representatives fromStaunton, Waynesboro and Augusta County, along with public and private transit partners. Additionally, significant input to the TDP was sought through rider surveys and stakeholder interviews.
A primary focus of the projects included in the TDP is the development of a combined urban-rural system that ties together current services operating in the Staunton, Augusta and Waynesboro region. The program will lay the foundation for future growth as community awareness increases, ridership increases, and additional transit partners are obtained. Modest service improvements are included within the plan, based on currently available funding resources. These include launch of unified brand called BRITE, the formation of a Transit Advisory Committee (TAC), consolidated transit funding under the CSPDC, and improvements to the Route 250 Connector, the Silver Trolley route in Staunton and the Waynesboro Circulator route.
The formation of a Transit Advisory Committee (TAC) is a key aspect of the TDP. The TAC will be tasked with making recommendations to the CSPDC regarding operations of the transit system; supporting the delivery of public transportation to citizens and visitors in the service area; engaging in planning and community outreach activities; and reporting TAC activities to their respective locality or organization.
The adopted TDP will be forwarded to the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation as the six year plan for transit in this area, and will serve as the basis for near-term funding requests.
Central Shenandoah Planning District Executive Director, Bonnie Riedesel, presented Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe with a harvest box of Fields of Gold Farm Trail products. Secretary of Agriculture Todd Haymore was given a framed photo of a Rockbridge County landscape depicting the region's beauty and the importance of farming in the Fields of Gold region. Ms. Riedesel presented the items to the Governor and Secretary following the Shenandoah Valley Partnership's (SVP) Annual Meeting held at the Stonewall Jackson Hotel & Conference Center on July 22, 2015. The harvest box contained locally grown and produced items from each of the eight counties that participate in Fields of Gold - Shenandoah Valley's Farm Trail.
The Governor was the keynote speaker at the meeting, which showcased SVP's accomplishments in promoting and attracting business to the Valley. Gov. McAuliffe talked about recent agricultural expansions, growth in the state wine and craft beer industries, increased tourism, and the urgency of job creation as the Commonwealth's economy experiences significant changes in the coming years.
For more information about the Fields of Gold program, contact Tracey Coltrain, email@example.com (540) 885-5174 or visit www.fieldsofgold.org.
Enjoy the Insider Newsletter! Stay in the know regarding what is happening on the Fields of Gold Farm Trail. Please click HERE for the newsletter.
Around the Region, the Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission's monthly newsletter is available HERE.