Alum Spring Road and the adjacent section of the VCR Trail will be realigned as part of the proposed Fredericksburg Park townhouse project off Lafayette Boulevard.
City Council unanimously approved Tuesday a McLean-based developer’s request for the city to give up its right-of-way for Alum Spring Road in exchange for a new right-of-way for the reconfigured street. It will also pay to have it and the trail realigned.
RCKF Fredericksburg LLC, an affiliate of Kettler, plans to shift Alum Spring Road and the trail section approximately 135 feet to the southwest to make the intersection of Alum Spring Road with Lafayette Boulevard safer. It will also upgrade the south side of Alum Spring Road, which is a two-lane public street, with curb, gutter, sidewalk, and on-street parallel parking.
The total area of right-of-way to be vacated is a little over a half acre. No plans have been submitted for it yet, but the anticipated use is commercial, according to Marne Sherman, the city’s development administrator.
The VCR Trail will be reconstructed to match what’s there today, but its northern right-of-way limit will extend five feet so the city can add amenities in the future. It will reconnect to the existing trail approximately 200 feet west of Lafayette Boulevard and continue into Alum Spring Park.
The trail will also wind through the proposed Fredericksburg Park neighborhood to Lafayette Boulevard, just south of the proposed roundabout. It will then continue south on Lafayette Boulevard to St. Paul Street, and is planned for future extension to the Fredericksburg /Spotsylvania boundary.
A pedestrian/bicycle crossing is proposed across Lafayette Boulevard at the southern leg of the National Park Service entrance on Lee Drive. It will be constructed similarly to the recently installed crossing on Fall Hill Avenue near the roundabout with Mary Washington Boulevard.
Sherman said that the realignments will help promote connectivity for pedestrians, bicyclists and cars; and the VCR Trail extension will connect the new Fredericksburg Park neighborhood and Lafayette Boulevard Corridor to downtown. The new right-of-way also will accommodate a 5- foot-wide utility strip and will be planted with street trees.
In other business, City Council:
- Unanimously approved amending to the Unified Development Ordinance to include the “Archaeological Preservation District” and accompanying regulations, and to amend the official zoning map to designate the overlay district in order to identify and interpret archaeological resources within the city.
- Discussed Vakos Cos.’s plans for two downtown Fredericksburg blocks in light of the developer’s withdrawal of plans to turn part of the street between them into a pedestrian area that would have been called The Promenade. Concerns included the impacts of the apartment buildings, hotel and parking garage envisioned for those blocks will have on traffic.
- Discussed the possibility of adding cameras to catch drivers who run through red lights. State law allows one such camera for every 10,000 residents in a locality, which means that Fredericksburg could have two. City staff was asked to research this and other options, along with associated costs