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Letter to the Editor: Access concerns for Blue Ridge Shadows development

Editor:

I read with interest the front-page article “Cedar Valley Entrance Concerns Voiced” in the Aug. 24 issue of the Northern Virginia Daily.

Large housing developments like Cedar Valley and Blue Ridge Shadows in Warren County that are dependent on one way in/one way out and no alternate emergency access create a potentially dangerous/deadly situation when an emergency response is required.  I say this because I am a resident of Blue Ridge Shadows outside of Front Royal on Route 522/340 (Winchester Road).

When our development is fully built out (probably early next year), it will contain 225 residences (161 houses and 64 townhomes).  All traffic and emergency response are dependent on Shadows Drive and a bridge spanning Crooked Run close to the entrance to a convenience store/gas station.

The bridge is not the issue – it is the fact that the adjacent service driveway is routinely utilized by heavy trucks and fuel tankers visiting the store. The turn into the store’s driveway is both sharp and slanted toward the bridge, which presents a real threat of a fully loaded trailer tipping toward the bridge, shutting down vehicle access and spilling whatever heavy load or fuel it is carrying directly onto the bridge and into the run.

I have witnessed trailers leaning toward the bridge and found myself holding my breath.  Any sort of spill would likely damage the bridge, cutting off all vehicle access, and probably pollute the stream, creating a disastrous situation for both the local environment and residents and leaving us without road access and unavailable to emergency responders.

This situation has been the subject of periodic review by Warren County officials since our development’s early stages, and there has been some discussion about trying to find a solution, but nothing of consequence has resulted.  Meanwhile, we can only hold our breath every time we approach our entrance and see one of those large vehicles turning.

We would all like to see this issue remain tabled and some practical solution sought to prevent this disaster in the making.

Charles Funk, Front Royal

 

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