(These are 15 amendments that I wrote, which were submitted to the County for the Centerville Village Plan.)
1. To solve traffic issues created by the Village Plan, road improvement will be needed. Many of these improvements will require road right-of-way acquisitions, from land proposed for development.
While the Comprehensive Plan is primary a land use map, it is a critical tool for communicating the public’s aspirations to developers. Failure to include these amendments in the plan, could lead to both traffic gridlock and delays to developers who will have to revise plans.
2. Plan and add road interchanges to solve the impending traffic growth on Ashland Road between Rockville Road and Three Chopt Road.
The current plan offers nothing to solve the current traffic problems in this area, while adding two factors that will worsen traffic by:
- Removing the extension of St. Matthews Lane to Ashland Road.
- Adding hundreds of homes on the west side of Rockville Road. While the total number of homes added may not be the 740 that some suggest, 600 homes is a reasonable estimate.
3. Plan a parkway, west of Rockville Road, as the main access to any development on that side of Rockville Road.
Traffic from approximately 600 new homes on the west side of Rockville Road, in addition to traffic from the industrial zone on the east side of Rockville Road, will cause congestion and likely increase accidents on this country road. A new road is needed, roughly parallel to and west of Rockville Road, to serve the new communities. This new road should join with Rockville Road as far south as possible and be integrated with a planned solution to the entire Ashland Road/Rockville Road/Three Chopt traffic area.
While short-term development may require a smaller road, it is necessary to reserve the right-of-way at parkway width.
4. Remove the planned Three Chopt Road tunnel under Route 288.
The extremely expensive project will build a route that will become a shortcut for traffic from Ashland Road interchange with I-64, to Short Pump. This route will allow drivers to avoid the Broad Street Road and Route 288 interchange by increasing traffic at the problematic Ashland interchange. This provides no benefit to Goochland businesses or residents.
5. Upgrade Three Chopt Road, west of Route 288, to a parkway.
The large parcels of land on both sides of Three Chopt Road will invite large-scale commercials or residential development.. The traffic load of this new development requires a parkway to handle the increased traffic. While in the near future, a smaller road may suffice, it is necessary to reserve the right-of-way at parkway width.
6. Upgrade “Road A,” north of Broad Street Road to a major connector road.
The large area on both sides of Three Chopt Road will invite large-scale commercial or residential development.. The proposed Three Chopt Road tunnel under Route 288 is unlikely to occur for decades, if ever.
The traffic load that new development will create on Three Chopt Road requires a parkway, connecting Broad Street Road and Three Chopt Road. That road should be “Road A,” currently on the plan.
While traffic created by initial development may require only a smaller road, it is necessary to reserve the right-of-way at parkway width.
7. Upgrade “Road A,” south of Broad Street Road to a parkway.
Road A will likely be a connector between Broad Street Road and Tuckahoe Creek Parkway.
While traffic produced by initial development may require only a smaller road, it is necessary to reserve the right-of-way at parkway width.
8. Curve the north-south connector road away from existing home backyards, running east of Belleview Gardens, from Three Chopt Road to Broad Street Road.
Without this change, there will be no buffer between Belleview Gardens and the interchange development area. This road will likely experience heavy traffic, as the Three Chopt Road tunnel under Route 288 is unlikely to be built for decades, if ever.
9. Realign the proposed extension of Plaza Drive, so that the east end meets Road A, not Broad Street Road.
The creation of an intersection of Plaza Drive and Broad Street Road would require a traffic light, a short distance from another new intersection, at Road A and Broad Street Road, to the east. That would be two new traffic lights between Hockett Road and the Route 288 interchange.
10. Realign the proposed extension of Plaza Drive, so that the east end does not connect to Broad Street Road, across from Whippoorwill Road.
Whippoorwill Road is a narrow country dead-end with homes built in the 1960s. This road is across from the planned intersection of Plaza Drive with Broad Street Road. An intersection at that location would encourage traffic from I-64 and north of Broad Street Road, to use Whippoorwill as a short-cut to get to Road A, south of Broad Street Road.
11. Close Whippoorwill Road to through traffic, when Road A is built, south of Broad Street Road. Retain the ability of emergency vehicles to drive through.
Whippoorwill was connected to the Readers Branch community because no other second exit was available. When Road A is built, there is no need for this through road.
12. Build a turn lane at St. Matthews Lane and Broad Street Road
Traffic backs-up on St. Matthews Lane will worsen in the future. When construction starts for the replacement of the old Exxon Station, there will be an opportunity to obtain the necessary right-of-way to widen the road.
An additional turn lane for northbound Hockett Road should also be considered but that improvement is less critical, because of traffic being redirected to the Ashland Road extension.
13. Build the right turn ramp for northbound Ashland Road onto Eastbound I-64, as the first step of the divergent diamond project.
Northbound traffic on Ashland Road is not the greatest challenge at that interchange, but two-thirds or three-quarters of traffic on northbound Ashland Road turns right onto I-64. Southbound heavy trucks, making a left onto eastbound I-64 must wait for each oncoming car. The current northbound ramp entrance is one car length long, forcing trucks to idle and needlessly wait.
14. Build a greenway path, parallel to and south of Broad Street Road. This amendment is submitted for consideration, if the board chooses not to accept amendments from residents in Park at Saddlecreek and Oak Grove, which would prevent the extension of Saddlecreek parkway.
Specifically, the greenway path along Saddlecreek should be annotated with traffic calming speed bumps and numerous light controlled pedestrian crosswalks. The greenway should continue east, from Hockett Road to Road A, following the previous November plan’s path for Saddlecreek Parkway. At Road A, the greenway will connect with the other greenway branch going north, over Broad Street Road.
The current plan for both Saddlecreek Parkway and for the greenway along Readers Branch are extremely unpopular with the community’s residents. An alternative path for the greenway, with measures that discourage through traffic, will greatly answer those concerns.
15. Remove parts of the greenway path that cut through existing backyards.
The current plan for both Saddlecreek Parkway and for the greenway along Readers Branch are extremely unpopular with the community’s residents. Opposition also exists for sections of the path North of Broad Street. An alternative path for the greenway, with measures that discourage through traffic, will greatly answer those concerns.
(Note: Since posting this amendment, I’ve learned that the greenway is unpopular with residents north of Broad Street Road.)