Downtown Crozet streetscape receives recognition from Virginia Transportation Construction Alliance

albemarlePhase 2 of the Downtown Crozet Streetscape project has received honorable mention in the Virginia Transportation Construction Alliance’s 2015 Transportation Engineering Awards. This recognition comes nearly a year after the completion of Phase 2 of the Crozet Streetscape project.

The Downtown Crozet Streetscape Project, Phase 2, improved pedestrian connectivity within Downtown Crozet; provided increased vitality and visibility for business owners; created a context-sensitive design that balanced the needs of all users including vehicles, pedestrians, and bicyclists; and aesthetically enhanced the entrance corridor and main thoroughfare of downtown. It created an environmentally “green” street, and is one of the first times that the Virginia Department of Transportation has approved the use of bioretention facilities between the sidewalk and curb.

The project addressed the fragmented, dilapidated and/or missing pedestrian/bicycle facilities and links to other networks and rerouted the overhead utilities and undergrounded portions. It added 7-foot-wide sidewalks, paver crosswalks, decorative street lighting, and bike lanes to maintain a historic downtown feel and improve roadway safety. The new stormwater pipe system, stormwater management biofilters, and new native landscaping (trees and shrubs) solved drainage issues, enhanced aesthetics, and will add shade as the landscaping matures. New retaining walls, modeled after the existing walls, were constructed to reduce impacts to properties as well as to maintain some of the existing street characteristics. All of these improvements set the framework for the style and appearance of future redevelopment as Crozet grows into a small urban center.

Community involvement was essential to successful completion of the project. Partnering with the community also led to design enhancements to maintain functionality for residents and business owners. When citizens wanted the design team to save the patio seating at a local restaurant, the team was inspired to make the porch the centerpiece to the design and work in such a way as to encourage other restaurants to include patio seating. To ensure that the corridor would be presentable for the town’s annual 4th of July celebration, the county and contractor representatives worked together to advance construction and/or make portions of the project accessible.

Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc. designed the $1.5 million project, which was constructed by Linco,Inc. A. Morton Thomas and Associates Inc. performed the construction inspection. The project was designed and phased to minimize construction disruption to the community and the project was completed on time and on budget.

“The Crozet community is committed to downtown as the focal point and community center of Crozet,” said Supervisor Ann Mallek. “The streetscape project and other downtown enhancements will help foster economic vitality as well as preserve and accentuate the historic character of Downtown Crozet.“

“The streetscape project is a successful example of place-making in our urban areas, something that is very important to the County’s future,” said County Executive Tom Foley. “This project reflects our commitment to the Crozet community and connects all our recent capital investments into a cohesive, attractive, vibrant downtown that embodies the vision and intent of the master plan.”

The Engineering Consultant Leadership Committee (ECLC) of the Virginia Transportation Construction Alliance (VTCA) presents its annual VTCA Transportation Engineering Awards program which recognizes outstanding design work in the Transportation industry.

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