Crozet Prepares for Streetscape Project Construction
The town of Crozet is about to get a major facelift.
Construction on a streetscape project is set to start in January. That means disruptions for traffic and businesses, but the county says communication is key to making the project as painless as possible.
"The streetscape project is really the connection project,” said Albemarle County spokesperson Lee Catlin.
With a stormwater project, new library and improvements to Jarman's Gap Road done, all eyes are now on the $1.4 million streetscape project. Utility lines along Crozet Avenue will be removed; sidewalks, landscaping and furniture will be added.
"Everything that's happening, it's really blossoming into people wanting to get out of the cars and that's an exciting thing,” said Albemarle County Supervisor Ann Mallek.
Since the county signed off on the Crozet Master Plan in 2004, a big investment has come from the county office building to make Crozet a better place to live work and shop.
"This has been actively in process for 10 years but it takes a long time to get things to happen,” Mallek said.
With a contractor selected and work set to start in early January, the county says communication will be critical to keep Crozet alive during construction.
"There will be some inconvenience and some disruption during the course of the project. You cannot do a project down the main street of a small town like Crozet without having some disruption,” Catlin said.
The county says it will use social media to communicate construction updates. The project should be done by the end of the summer or early fall next year.
The County has launched a website for the Crozet Streetscape project at www.albemarle.org/crozetstreetscape where accurate and up to date information regarding the status and progress of the project will be posted once construction starts in early January.
Currently the site includes project background and overview information, graphics, and information from the December 3 community meeting including the consultant presentation, construction phasing and a summary of questions/answers and comments from the meeting.
Also, citizens should be aware of the following opportunities to stay informed about the project:
There will be a groundbreaking ceremony in January, 2014 - details will be shared as they become available. The project website,www.albemarle.org/CrozetStreetscape, will be updated every two weeks, or more frequently as needed depending on project activity. The Crozet Amail enews list will receive an update every two weeks, or more frequently as needed depending on project activity - sign up for that eNews list is available at www.albemarle.org/amail Social media opportunities will be available on Facebook and Twitter once the project begins. Members of the project team are available to speak at community meetings and will hold onsite project update drop in hours on a regular basis.
This second phase of the streetscape project will bring enhancements along Crozet Avenue in downtown Crozet. The streetscape project is one of the projects in the Crozet master plan focused on preserving downtown as the focal point and community center of Crozet as well as fostering economic vitality and accentuating historic character.
A contractor has been selected for construction of the streetscape improvements, and construction is scheduled to begin in early January.
Streetscape enhancements will take place along Crozet Avenue to Tabor Street, including sidewalks, street trees, pedestrian/street lighting, crosswalks, benches and other street amenities, bio-filters, and bike lanes. Drainage improvements will include curbs, gutters and a new stormwater drainage system. With so much construction activity planned for downtown Crozet, the coordination and timing of these projects is crucial to maintain traffic and pedestrian movements.
The streetscape project is an essential step in achieving the goals of the Crozet Master Plan by improving pedestrian connectivity within downtown Crozet, providing economic benefits and increased vitality for business owners, balancing the needs of all users including vehicles, pedestrians, and bicyclists, and aesthetically enhancing the entry way and main thoroughfare of downtown.
This phase of the project is being funded in part by a Transportation Enhancement Program grant through the Virginia Department of Transportation.
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