Harrisonburg Public Works Presents Streetscape Plan Update

By: David Coy Email
By: David Coy Email

HARRISONBURG -- The City of Harrisonburg is thinking about re-doing some of the sidewalks and streets in the downtown area. Tuesday, the public works department presented the latest in its research.

The original plan to make changes in Downtown Harrisonburg was in 2005. It may look a little different if the Streetscape plan goes through. Many of the streets may get a facelift if the price is right.

"It makes us prioritize projects A,B,and C. In a way that meets the needs of Harrisonburg," said Harrisonburg City Council Member Abe Shearer.

The price of the projects is a main concern but the plan isn't set in stone.

We are not proposing that any of these projects be proposed at this time. It's just a conceptual plan approximately what it might cost," said Harrisonburg Public Works Director Jim Baker.

The proposed changes include creating a bike lane and new sidewalk on Gay Street to Mason Street. The price tag is around $417,400.

Adding a path and widening the Bruce Street bridge would cost $2.2 million. Making Federal Street a one way would cost $2.6 million.

These projects aren't designed to be done all at once.

"People don't come to downtown to drive. They come to downtown to walk. Those are the projects in the proposal are particulary, I guess interestng to me," said Shearer.

Along with the proposals, Mason and East Market Streets will have a roundabout to ease traffic flow. That costs $4.5 million. The costs are not based on engineering estimates. They are based on something else.

"A picture, a drawing. We're looking at today's cost on what it costs for sidewalks and stormdrain systems," said Baker.

There isn't a set date if or when the plan will go in effect. The next step is for the public works department to hold an open house and receive comments.

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