The latest on the programs and projects of
the Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission.
Around the Region
May 2019
Buena Vista Interior & Drainage Project 
50 Years of Community Development 
In the 1970s, a regional inventory revealed that there were significant needs and lack of financial resources to upgrade existing public utility systems within our region.  Since that time, the CSPDC has provided technical assistance to all 21 jurisdictions through identifying and evaluating solutions to problems; assisting with grant applications and administration; assisting with seeking and obtaining financing; and completing GPS and mapping services for utilities. 

In 1998, the CSPDC established the Central Shenandoah Development Corporation, a 501c(3) organization. The program provided an innovative approach to providing technical assistance for infrastructure projects and was the first of its kind to be established by any Planning District in Virginia. 
To highlight just a few of the projects the CSPDC has been involved with over the years:
  • A $10 million upgrade to a conventional wastewater treatment facility serving Craigsville and the Augusta Correctional Center.
  • A $2.7 million project in Goshen to replace the public water system with new water lines, water storage tank and water meters for each connection. (The previous system experienced a massive failure resulting in a declared state of emergency!)
  • The $2.5 million Bacova Regional Sewer System project, which included improvements to the Hot Springs Treatment Plant to bring a reliable and expanded sewer system to Bath County.
  • A $1 million CDBG grant to the City of Buena Vista to repair Dickinson Well, the city's largest well source. 
These projects have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in our region and were made possible thanks to important partnerships with federal, state and local governments and other organizations. 
Cycling on the Greenway Trail in Waynesboro
May is National Bike Month 

May is National Bike Month - an annual celebration to increase awareness and participation in bicycling, and showcase its many health and environmental benefits. 

The CSPDC's Bike the Valley and RideShare programs are assisting the Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition with events and activities centered around Bike to Work Day (May 17) in the cities of Harrisonburg, Staunton, and Waynesboro. 
On Friday, May 17: Staunton's Bike & Walk to Work Commuter Breakfast will be held  at the Wharf parking lot from  7:30 - 9:30 am. Harrisonburg's Bike Everywhere Day will be held at Court Square downtown from 7:00 - 10:00 am. On Saturday, May 18: Waynesboro will host Bike the Greenway on the South River Greenway at Constitution Park from 8:00 am - 12:00 pm. All three events are free and open to the public. 
Visit Bike the Valley and SVBC for additional bike activities being held throughout May, including Bike to School Day on May 8, and the Ride of Silence on May 15.   
Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport
GO Virginia Region 
Prioritizes Projects

To continue building a pipeline of projects for GO Virginia Region 8, the Regional Council met on April 23 to consider the 11 project abstracts for Fiscal Year 2020 that were submitted following the GO Virginia Summits held in March. P rojects will cultivate new jobs and opportunities in the Shenandoah Valley and fall within  the four GO Virginia frameworks:  Workforce Development, Start-Ups/Entrepreneurial Ecosystem, Site Development, and Business Scale-up & Commercialization.   

The Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport site improvement project received top ranking and is of particular interest to localities within the CSPDC region.  While the Regional Council has prioritized the projects, the State will ultimately make the final determination.  

GO Virginia Region 8 is comprised of the 16 localities in the CSPDC and the Northern Shenandoah Regional Commission regions. The CSPDC provides staff support to the Region 8 council and assists with GO Virginia project development and applications. 

First Walk-Bike Summit 
in SAW Region Held 

Sixty elected officials, planners, advocates, and public health practitioners gathered on April 26 at the Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences for the Staunton-Augusta-Waynesboro (SAW) region's first annual Walk-Bike Summit. The Summit's mission is to " improve the health, safety, and economy of our community by connecting community partners who want to make Staunton, Augusta County, and Waynesboro a more walk and bike friendly place to live and visit." After hearing a keynote address from Pete Eshelman, the director of the Roanoke Outdoors Foundation, and updates on ongoing local initiatives to create new opportunities to walk and bike in our region, attendees brainstormed goals and action steps to advance the Summit's mission through their personal and professional work. There are plans of making this an annual event. 
Richmond Road in Staunton
Richmond Road Corridor & 250 Connector Bus Route Evaluated
The Staunton-Augusta-Waynesboro Metropolitan Planning Organization, in collaboration with BRITE Transit, the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Cities of Staunton and Waynesboro, Augusta County, and a team of consultants are undertaking two studies along US 250 to improve transportation facilities and services.  Public meetings for both studies were hosted in April. 
The Richmond Road Corridor Study conducted an operational and safety analysis of Richmond Road (US 250) between the I-81 Exit 222 interchange and Frontier Drive in Staunton. Proposed multimodal improvements will improve safety, develop new facilities for pedestrians, cyclists and public transit users in the corridor, and reduce current and anticipated congestion. Study recommendations will be used to guide future transportation investments in the area.
The 250 Connector Route Study examined the BRITE 250 Connector bus route and identified route and stop recommendations that would improve reliability and better serve the transit needs of the corridor. The 250 Connector runs between Staunton and Waynesboro along US 250, serving major destinations like Augusta Health, Wilson Workforce and Rehabilitation Center, Walmart (Staunton and Waynesboro), the Augusta County Library, and Waynesboro Town Center.  The consultant is developing a preferred alternative with phased improvements that BRITE will implement in the near term, and in future years as development occurs in the corridor.
Main Street in Lexington
Lexington Area Selected for Walkability Institute 
The Virginia Walkability Action Institute, a program hosted by the Virginia Department of Health in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, focuses on opportunities to enhance walkability in communities. The Institute brings together multi-disciplinary teams to pursue policy, systems and environmental changes to increase physical activity and reduce chronic disease.   

A team from the Lexington area has been selected to participate in the program. Team members include Amanda McComas from the Central Shenandoah Health District, Arne Glaeser and Leslie Straughan from Lexington, Tom Roberts from Buena Vista, and Ann Cundy from the CSPDC. The program kicked off in April, and will conclude in September 2019. The team will develop an action plan for improving walkability in the Lexington area. 
Showalter's Orchard in
 Rockingham County
Fields of Gold Member Newsletter Published 

The Fields of Gold quarterly newsletter, Fence Talk, was distributed to the over 230 Fields of Gold members in the beginning of May. This quarter's publication featured tips about Facebook marketing, insights on using Google Analytics, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's newly released  2017 agricultural census data, and numerous resource articles to assist agritourism businesses. 

Fence Talk also featured a brief member survey  to help collect important information that will impact future planning and program development. 

Kim Alexander & Eric Pollitt
Region Welcomes New Town Managers to Glasgow & Elkton

New town manager of Elkton, Kim Alexander, has an extensive background in local government, most recently serving as city manager of Manassas Park. A graduate of James Madison University, she is excited to serve the community of Elkton.  The town manager position has been vacant since 2016. 

Eric Pollitt comes to Glasgow from Fluvanna County where he was a management analyst. He also has previous experience as an International City Management Association  Fellow with the City of Templeton, Massachusetts and the Chief Financial Officer of Shelbyville, Kentucky. Pollitt replaces Interim Town Manager, Jon Ellestad who has been in that role since September 2018. 

Both Alexander and Politt began serving in their positions in May. 

2020 VATI Input Sessions 
The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) will host two input sessions to discuss the proposed FY2020 Virginia Telecommunication Initiative (VATI) guidelines and criteria. The first session will focus on gathering feedback and input from internet service providers, while the second input session will focus on gathering feedback and input from units of local government and citizens. The first meeting will be held on May 17 in Richmond and the second May 28 in Glen Allen. Registration is requested for attendance.
DHCD has $19 million in VATI Funds to implement broadband infrastructure deployment in partnership with units of local government and private internet service providers across the Commonwealth. The funds will be used to extend service to areas that presently are unserved by any broadband provider.
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