CSPDC Releases RFP for Lewis Street Hub Project (Staunton)

Work to renovate the Lewis Street Transit Hub located at 240 N. Lewis Street in Downtown Staunton is moving forward. The CSPDC received a 5339 Bus and Bus Facilities Grant from the Federal Transit Administration to rehabilitate the lot that is used for BRITE Transit, and City of Staunton free parking. Currently, BRITE Transit buses and trolleys hub at the lot throughout the day, providing a central boarding and transfer location for public transit riders. The City of Staunton also utilizes parking spaces in the lot for free city parking. This federal grant funding will allow the CSPDC to improve lot conditions, create a designated bus boarding area, and improve the overall experience of those using the lot for transit and parking needs.

A Request for Proposals is being issued to solicit qualifications from firms for Architectural and Engineering Design services. The RFP and necessary documents were published to this page on September 19, 2022 and are available below. Any addenda to the RFP will be posted here if/when necessary. Proposals should be submitted through DemandStar. Instructions are included in Attachment E. The deadline to submit proposals is 5:00 pm (EST) on October 21, 2022.

Click the links below to download the RFP Document:

RFP Cover Sheet and Certificates
RFP Document
Attachment A – GSA Form SF330
Attachment B – KH Memo
Attachment C – FSA Provisions
Attachment D – Virginia Procurement Clauses
Attachment E – DemandStar Instructions

Addendum #1 – Questions and Answers, Recording of Pre-Proposal Conference  (posted 10.07.22)

Addendum #2 – Clarification to Addendum Regarding SF330 Form Instructions (posted 10.11.22)

CSPDC Staff to Attend Fall Conferences

Rural Planning Caucus Conference
The Rural Planning Caucus of Virginia (RPC) is an organization focusing on the specific planning needs of small towns and rural areas across the Commonwealth.
The annual RPC Conference provides a forum for professionals to gather and share planning information affecting rural areas, and the 2022 RPC Conference will be held on October 19 – 21 at Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke, Virginia.
The conference agenda includes sessions on planning for modular homes, broadband mapping, agritourism, and casino land use impacts.

Learn More

Virginia Governor’s Transportation Conference

CSPDC staff will be attending the 2022 Virginia Governor’s Transportation Conference at the Virginia Beach Convention Center from October 26 – 28, 2022. The conference attracts hundreds of industry and transportation leaders to come together to network, exchange ideas, and discuss key transportation issues.

Learn More

Virginia Governor’s Housing Conference

CSPDC staff will attend the Virginia Governor’s Housing Conference this year, which will be held November 16th through the 18th in Arlington. The 3-day conference invites public, private, and non-profit housing partners across the state to discuss important housing issues affecting all Virginians.
The conference will cover topics such as housing policy, development, innovation, and equity. The keynote speaker is Dr. Elliot Eisenberg, who will speak to the connections between housing and economic development.

Shenandoah Rail Trail Update

While communities along the Shenandoah Rail Trail, a proposed 48.5-mile recreational trail between Broadway and Front Royal, await news on acquisition of the property from Norfolk Southern with funding in the Commonwealth’s FY 2023 budget, they continue to plan for the economic boost the trail will bring their way. The Harrisonburg Daily News Record reported on September 9th that business owners at the Trail’s southern terminus in Broadway are preparing to host visitors with new AirBnBs, restaurants, and expanded parking in Heritage Park. Additional visitor spending once the trail is complete is estimated at $32.3 million per year throughout the region, according to an economic impact analysis prepared for the Shenandoah Rail Trail Exploratory Partnership, an unincorporated coalition of public, private and non-profit organizations championing the project.
CSPDC is a member of the Shenandoah Rail Trail Partnership, and in 2021 assisted the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation with a feasibility study that evaluated the condition of the corridor, refined projected economic impacts of the trail, and developed cost estimates to construct and maintain the trail. For more information on the Trail, and to sign up for updates, visit https://shenandoahalliance.org/project/shenandoah-rail-trail-partnership/ .

September is Discover Transit Month & Afton Express Marks 1-Year Anniversary

During September, the CSPDC and BRITE Transit are partnering with the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation to celebrate Discover Transit Month. September also marks the 1-year anniversary of the launch of the Afton Express. Throughout the month we will be highlighting local transit options and highlighting the success of Afton Express.

The Afton Express began operations on September 1, 2021, and in the last 365 days passengers took 8,174 trips between the Staunton, Augusta, and Waynesboro region and Charlottesville and Albemarle County. The service continues to grow each month, with recent monthly averages of 46 passenger trips per day.

We will be hosting events throughout the month to celebrate transit and thank our riders with pop-ups at Afton Express and BRITE Transit stops (September 15, 21, 22), fare free days (September 1 and 21), and a live radio broadcast from the Waynesboro Park and Ride Lot bus stop (September 29).

Both BRITE and Afton Express, along with others, provide necessary and valued transit services to our riders in the Central Shenandoah Planning District. Explore all the possibilities offered by transit agencies in our community at transitva.org! You can also celebrate Discover Transit Month by taking the Try Transit pledge, which will enter you in a sweepstakes for a chance to win tickets for the Amtrak Northeast Regional train or Virginia Breeze Bus Lines.

Celebrate with us on social media! Follow BRITE Transit, Afton Express, and the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation on social media to stay up to date, and learn more about transportation connecting the Commonwealth at drpt.virginia.gov.

BRITE Transit | Facebook

Afton Express | Facebook

DRPT | Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) Public Meeting Comes to Staunton in September

The Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) monthly public meeting will be held at Hotel 24 in Staunton on September 20 and 21, 2022 beginning at 8:30 a.m. each day. On September 20 there will be presentations on topical state-related transportation issues. September 21 will include a public comment period at 8:30 a.m., followed by CTB action items.
The meeting is an opportunity for localities in our region to meet newly appointed at-large rural members Randy Laird and Thomas Lawson, both from the Shenandoah Valley, and the Staunton District at-large member Mark Merrill, along with other CTB members and the Secretary of Transportation, W. Sheppard Miller. The meeting agenda is typically released one week before the meeting date.

CSPDC Hosts Housing Focus Groups in Rockbridge Area

The Regional Housing Study is well underway, and CSPDC staff in partnership with the Virginia Center for Housing Research (VCHR) have kicked off a series of focus groups and interviews with stakeholders across the region. On August 24th, CSPDC and VCHR staff went to Buena Vista to hold a day of focus groups with realtors, lenders, housing service providers, small, medium, and large employers, and university representatives in Rockbridge County, Buena Vista, and Lexington. During the sessions, staff provided an overview of the study timeline as well as preliminary data findings, and then opened the floor to participants to discuss the major housing-related challenges, barriers, gaps, and opportunities for growth in their area. Common themes included a lack of available housing inventory at all levels, the impact of the student population, opportunities for first-time homebuyers, and potential incentives for affordable housing development. CSPDC and VCHR staff also interviewed several large employers in the region to learn more about the housing needs of their staff.
The CSPDC and VCHR will continue holding focus groups and interviews through September. This qualitative information will compliment the data analysis and provide a regional context for interpreting data. Additionally, staff will continue to engage stakeholders that attended the focus groups by providing frequent updates on the study’s progress and allowing opportunities for stakeholder input.

Rockbridge Submits VATI Grants

Rockbridge County submitted two 2023 Virginia Telecommunication Initiative (VATI) applications in August to bring universal, high-speed internet coverage to the County. The CSPDC assisted the County with both applications, and if awarded, the CSPDC will provide grant administration services for the County. Awards will be announced in late December 2022.

Rockbridge County submitted an application with co-applicant BARC Electric with a total project cost of $24,161,207 and VATI funding request of $16,154,509 to serve 1,413 locations. Rockbridge County submitted a second application with co-applicant Brightspeed with a total project cost of $11,112,180 and VATI funding request of $7,395,160 to serve 2,020 locations in the County.


VEDA Remote Work Panel Presentation Features CSPDC Localities

Attracting the remote workforce is a new strategy for many communities, with the potential for big impacts on local economies without a big investment in infrastructure. The Fall Virginia Economic Developers Association (VEDA) Conference will feature a panel presentation with Main Street America, Virginia Main Street, the CSPDC, and the City of Buena Vista. The panel will highlight Virginia Main Street’s Remote Work Pilot Program and discuss how communities can identify existing assets and infrastructure needs to successfully attract and retain remote workers. This session will explore the key commonalities and unique market positions to inspire economic developers across the state.

CSPDC Planner, Grace Blanchard, will share efforts within the Central Shenandoah Region to analyze remote work trends and capture remote work related growth. The CSPDC has provided technical assistance to DHCD’s Work from Home Pilot Program, supporting studies in Harrisonburg, Highland, and Buena Vista. Additionally, the CSPDC’s COVID-19 Economic Impact Report, prepared by Chmura Analytics, includes a remote work analysis, and information on telework plans, remote work trends, and broadband are available on the CSPDC’s COVID-19 Recovery Webpage.

Dayton Downtown Planning Project Kicks Off

On August 16th, the Town of Dayton hosted a public meeting to kick off their downtown revitalization initiative. Community members and business owners came out to hear about the Town’s plans to transform Downtown Dayton into a vibrant year-round destination and activity center. This marks the first step toward implementing the Community Development Block Grant the Town received from the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development. The Town is in process of assessing the existing conditions of their downtown properties. Once the assessment is completed at the end of September, the Town will advertise a request for proposals for a consultant to develop a revitalization plan that will guide the Town’s efforts to reenergize Dayton’s business district. The CSPDC is providing grant writing and administrative services.