Lake Front Road tops priority list

FRONT ROYAL – The sole access road for a Warren County neighborhood now tops the list of local road-improvement priorities.

The Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 Tuesday to adopt the Rural Addition Priority List of projects aimed at improving various roads through cost-sharing agreements with the Virginia Department of Transportation.

The 0.14-mile section of Lake Front Road to Creek Road serves as the access point for the Lake Front Royal Sanitary District. An evaluation form submitted for the proposed project notes that the road provides access off U.S. 522 to more than 300 lots in the subdivision. The form describes the pavement as in poor condition and in need of total reconstruction; major damage to the drainage structure over Sloat Creek.

Deputy County Administrator Robert Childress said Wednesday that Lake Front Road took the place of Pine Ridge Road, Phase I, in the Shenandoah Farms Sanitary District, as the top priority project. Crews completed construction of Pine Ridge Road, Phase I, earlier this summer and the county turned the section over to VDOT for future maintenance.

VDOT already allocated funding for the Lake Front Road project through its cost-sharing program, Childress told the board. The county provided the local match and needed to conduct some of the initial survey work, Childress said. VDOT is designing the new drainage structure.

“We’re hopeful that once the drainage structure has been designed, they’ll be ready to go to work next construction season next summer,” Childress said.

The county recently added Lake Front Royal to its growing list of sanitary districts despite protest by many property owners in the subdivision south of town. Proponents of the effort to create the sanitary district cited the need to expedite the reconstruction of Lake Front Road and the failing drainage structure.

After Lake Front Road, the Top 10 projects for the Rural Addition program are located in the Shenandoah Farms Sanitary District, the Thunderbird Farms and Fairfield Acres subdivisions and the Linden Heights Sanitary District.

The county provides up to 25 percent of the total cost of an eligible project up to $250,000 subject to yearly funding by the Board of Supervisors based on the priority list. The Virginia Department of Transportation provides up to 50 percent of the project cost subject to funding allocated by the General Assembly.

The county advertised for applications in late July to participate in the rural addition program. The county received 34 applications from six neighborhoods by the Sept. 1 deadline – Shenandoah Farms Sanitary District, Lake Front Royal Sanitary District, Linden Heights Sanitary District, Thunderbird Farms, Oak Ridge and Fairfield Acres.

The county’s road viewing committee reviewed individual candidates for the Rural Addition program and scored each on a set of criteria that covered access from existing VDOT roads, terrain, right-of-way availability and constraints, utility conflicts, drainage, environmental concerns, homes served, traffic counts, length, constructability and current condition. Staff members then ranked each project in order of scoring priority.

Eligible roads must appear on a plat recorded or opened to public use for at least 20 years during which time they served three or more families per mile.

Also at the meeting, supervisors voted to:

• Enter into an agreement with Front Royal for the collection and remittance of fees through the EnerGov software. County and town officials individually signed agreements in 2014 to buy permitting and inspections software through EnerGov. Applicants can apply for planning, zoning and building permits or plans through the software beginning in May 2018. Applicants can pay for permits and plans online. EnerGov cannot process payments for both the town and the county. The agreement calls for the county to collect payments and remit the portion of the funds owed to the town quarterly. The county will not charge the town for collecting or remitting the funds.

• Renew the annual term contract with Adams-Nelson & Associates for real estate broker services on an as-needed basis through Oct. 17, 2018

• Approve a revised resolution requesting that the Commonwealth Transportation Board take necessary action to ban through-truck traffic from traveling on Reliance Road between the Frederick County-Warren County line and U.S. 340-522. Supervisors adopted a resolution in February requesting the Commonwealth Transportation Board to restrict tractor-trailer traffic on the section of Reliance Road. Frederick County supervisors adopted a resolution seeking a ban on all truck traffic. The Virginia Department of Transportation has since asked Warren County supervisors to modify the resolution to include all heavy trucks instead of tractor-trailers in order to match the request adopted by Frederick County.

• Authorize Little Chapel Baptist Church to place a wooden cross and nativity scene on the Warren County Courthouse lawn from Dec. 15-Jan. 2; and Gene Rigelon with the Shenandoah Area Secular Humanists chapter of the Washington Area Secular Humanists to place two panels on the lawn during the same time period