Revision of East and West Ridgeville boulevards is approved

September 16, 1992|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,Staff Writer

MOUNT AIRY -- Mount Airy's Town Council Monday night approved a revision of East and West Ridgeville boulevards, stating that the changes will benefit the entire community.

"I feel we are out of line not to accept this and then deal with the results later on," said Councilman Marc Nance.

He later asked the council to study charging developers impact fees to pay for roads that must be revised to handle increased traffic.

The new proposal -- endorsed by several residents -- still would close the intersection of East Ridgeville Boulevard and Route 27, and direct traffic to the intersection of the state highway with the extension of West Ridgeville boulevard.

East Ridgeville would connect to West Ridgeville via an elongated, S-shaped road that would allow traffic to travel the route without stopping. An earlier proposal suggested perpendicular roads that would have created two new intersections.

In the second phase of the plan, an extension of West Ridgeville would parallel East Ridgeville and connect with Century Drive. The road would be built and paid for by developers as they open nearby properties.

"All the letters are, one way or another, supporting the extension as shown on the revised plan," said Theresa Baumgardner, Mount Airy's town planner. "Not having to stop to make the turn, but slowing down, was more acceptable to the companies in the area and the residents."

Homeowners on Conestoga Court still opposed the revision, saying that it was inconvenient and that the second phase was a dream. "That new feeder road is a carrot that might never happen," said resident Andy Schneider. "We don't like it that way, and we're the ones that have to live with it."

Nevertheless, that section of town will eventually need a collector road to handle the heavier residential traffic, said Mr. Nance.

If West Ridgeville is not extended, East Ridgeville will have to be widened and that would cost the town up to $10 million for purchasing property and road work, he said. A collector road is wider than a residential street and narrower than a major highway.

"The one thing that makes this viable is the cost to widen East Ridgeville Boulevard," said Mr. Nance. "Every man, woman and child in Mount Airy would be paying for it." Mr. Nance also said that the final route will be decided by the State Highway Administration, which maintains Route 27.

"The state has lots of input on this," he said. "We are only deciding on whether this road fits into our master plan and whether it will be used for more than entrance to a developer's commercial project."

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