News from the CSPDC Region
July 2022
CSPDC Kicks Off Data Training Series for Regional Housing Study
The CSPDC recently began a Regional Housing Study in partnership with the Virginia Center for Housing Research (VCHR) and HousingForward Virginia. As part of the study process, VCHR will host a series of data trainings that are available to both CSPDC staff and the region’s local government staff. The purpose of these trainings is to introduce participants to the variety of publicly available data that can be used to assess regional housing issues. Additionally, the trainings hope to empower staff to update data in comprehensive plans, housing studies, and other projects without needing to engage a consultant. 
This Story In the News
Valley housing shortage persists; local commission...

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - For people looking to move, transporting heavy furniture isn't the most difficult part. Too often, it's actually finding a place to live, which is true for much of the country. The Central Shenandoah Planning District...

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www.whsv.com
Afton Express Ridership Increases
The Afton Express has seen an increase in ridership as gas prices remain high. Ridership has been steadily growing since the service launched in September of 2021, but has really taken off in the last few months. From February to May, the CSPDC saw passenger counts increase by about 5% each month as more people learn of the service. From May to June that number jumped to 25%. As of June, the Afton Express sees between 45 and 50 passenger trips per day Monday through Thursday. Ridership is slightly lower on Friday, as people may take vacation, or may drive their own car to get a head start on their weekend plans. 


This Story In the News
Afton Express and CAT seeing ridership going up along...

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Charlottesville Area Transit and the Afton Express say they are seeing more riders come through their doors as gas prices remain higher than usual. "I think people are consistently tired of the gas prices," Paula...

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Dayton Receives CDBG Planning Grant 
The Town of Dayton received a Community Development Block Grant from the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development to develop a downtown revitalization plan that will guide the Town’s efforts to reenergize Downtown Dayton. Through this process, the Town hopes to create a collaborative vision for transforming Downtown Dayton into a year-round destination through streetscaping, local business, and pedestrian-oriented development.

Rockbridge and Goshen Broadband Projects Close Out
In 2020, the CSPDC was awarded a $2,202,000 VATI grant to bring high-speed internet to areas in Rockbridge County with co-applicant BARC Electric. Construction began December 2020 and ended in April 2022. This project provided broadband access to approximately 470 serviceable units, including 31 businesses in Rockbridge County. Specific areas include Glasgow, South Buffalo, Vesuvius, and Big Hill with a total of 118 miles of fiber.
CERT Graduates Volunteers 
On May 26, 2022 ten new volunteers graduated from the Staunton-Augusta-Waynesboro Community Emergency Response Team (S-A-W CERT)’s basic training course. CSPDC staff coordinates the S-A-W CERT program for Augusta County and the cities of Staunton and Waynesboro. The Spring 2022 basic training course was the first training offered since the COVID-19 Pandemic began in early 2020. 

Since September 2003, the basic CERT course has been offered 39 times, training over 600 people in the Central Shenandoah Region.
Ag Innovation Center in Buena Vista Awarded ARC Grant
The Ag Innovation Center project, known as the Virginia Innovation Collective, will receive a $700,000 grant through the Appalachian Regional Commission’s (ARC) Area Development Assistance Program. On June 30, Governor Youngkin recommended the project as one of eighteen projects in Virginia for ARC Funding. The grant will support The Advancement Foundation’s redevelopment of a vacant manufacturing building in downtown Buena Vista into a multiuse, business incubation facility.
TAP/DRPT Grants Approved 
The Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) approved the FY 2023 Six Year Improvement Program (SYIP) at the June, 2022 meeting. The FY23 SYIP includes funding for seven Transportation Alternatives (TAP) projects around the region, as well as operating and capital grant funding for the public transit and human service transportation providers in the region. TAP grants will fund the construction of sidewalk, intersection, and greenway paths in Augusta County, Bridgewater, Buena Vista, Harrisonburg, and Waynesboro.
2022 Virginia Outdoors Survey Launched  
The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) has launched the 2022 Virginia Outdoors Survey. Survey findings will help shape the 2023 Virginia Outdoors Plan, a blueprint for the state’s future outdoor recreation programing and infrastructure that is updated every five years. Current Virginia residents are eligible to participate in the survey and responses are due by August 15. Click here to begin the survey. 

HRMPO Public Engagement Process to Be Featured at National Conference
Director of Transportation and VAMPO Chair Ann Cundy will present at the National Association of MPOs (AMPO) Annual Conference in October, 2022. Ann will share the conference session with Chet Parsons, Director of Transportation for the Richmond Regional MPO, and Ashley Dobson, Director of Operations and Strategic Communications at Avid Core. The session will focus on post-pandemic public engagement strategies that MPOs of varying sizes can use for any planning process, but particularly on Long Range Transportation Plans. The HRMPO is currently developing the 2045 Long Range Transportation Plan with assistance from Kimley-Horn and Avid Core. 
VAPDC Summer Conference Set for July 20-22, 2022
The Virginia Association of Planning District Commissions (VAPDC) will hold its 2022 VAPDC Summer Conference on July 20-22, 2022, at the Hotel 24 South in Staunton. This conference is the first VAPDC in-person conference since 2019. The theme of the conference is “Leading Change Through Innovation and Technology.” The conference will begin at noon on Wednesday, July 20 and close at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, July 22. As Staunton City Council member and PDC Commissioner, Carolyn Dull will provide the welcome and is helping with arrangements to bring in students from the Heifetz Institute to perform for the group.


CSPDC Job Opening - Planner I/Planner II
This position provides planning services for localities which may include a broad range of services such as economic development, transportation, transit, environmental, emergency management, housing, outdoor recreation, and capacity building.
 
CSPDC Resources: