The CSPDC and the Bath County Economic Development Authority hosted a free Regional Housing Summit on May 25, 2017 in Hot Springs. Attendees learned strategies to address the demand for affordable workforce housing in their community. Summit speakers focused on the connection between housing and economic development, as well as funding opportunities to increase affordable housing options through homeownership, rental housing, housing rehabilitation, and new construction. Local government staff, including community development, economic development and workforce development; local elected officials; housing organizations and nonprofits; and other community leaders were in attendance.
The Commonwealth Transportation Board has announced their tentative awards for the FY18 Transportation Alternatives (TA) program.
Administered by VDOT, TA funds bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure and Safe Routes to School projects. Tentative grant recipients include the City of Buena Vista. Buena Vista requested funding for two projects: sidewalks and streetscaping on Magnolia Avenue (US 501), and the construction of a paved, shareduse path under the Rte. 60 bridge linking the city’s existing sidewalk network and the Chessie Trail. The Commonwealth Transportation Board will make the grant awards final at their June 2017 meeting. The CSPDC assisted with and provided letters of support for projects in three communities this year: the Town of Bridgewater, the City of Buena Vista, and the City of Waynesboro.
On May 4, the CSPDC hosted a Water and Sewer Infrastructure Financing Workshop for the localities in the region. The goal was to equip participants with knowledge and resources to make informed decisions about financing their water and sewer projects. Subject matter experts from VA Department of Health, VA Department of Environmental Quality, VA Department of Housing and Community Development, Southeast Rural Community Assistance Project, and USDA Rural Development presented funding options available through
their respective programs. CSPDC oncall consultants who sponsored the workshop include: A. Morton Thomas and Associates, Draper Aden Associates, Hurt & Proffitt, Timmons Group, and Vanasse Hangen Brustlin. The workshop was well received by participants. As one attendee expressed via email: “Thank you very much for this morning’s workshop. Very well done and good information frommultiple agencies!”
CSPDC staff is assisting the Town of Broadway in the updating of its Comprehensive Plan. Members of the planning group will meet monthly over the next year and guide the update of the Comprehensive Plan by reviewing current data, demographics, and information. Once the update is completed, the Planning Commission and the Town Council will hold public hearings to consider the adoption of the proposed
Staunton District member of the Commonwealth Transportation Board, F. Dixon Whitworth,Jr., visited the region on May 3, 2017. Mr. Whitworth attended the Staunton Augusta Waynesboro Metropolitan Planning Organization(MPO) Policy Board meeting, where he heard a presentation on past and upcoming local projects, and then shared valuable information with the Policy Board regarding several transportation funding programs. Following the MPO meeting, CSPDC, local government, and Virginia Department ofTransportation (VDOT) staff hosted Mr. Whitworth on a tour of project sites in Rockbridge County and the cities of Buena Vista and Lexington. Many of these sites are critical to the
Chessie Trail Rails-to-Trails facility and the great Brushy Hills to the Blue Ridge Parkway Greenway system.Later this month, Mr. Whitworth will give a report to the Commonwealth Transportation Board regarding the importance of Revenue Sharing and other funding programs to rural communities like those in the CSPDC.