2013 Annual Report of the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission

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Kurt Konrad Photography

THE 2013 ANNUAL REPORT

REGIONAL BROADBAND AUTHORITY RURAL TRANSPORTATION GREENWAY PLANNING CONGESTION

MANAGEMENT PLANNING STORMWATER PARTNERSHIP FOR A LIVABLE ROANOKE VALLEY INFRASTRUCTURE

HIGHLIGHTING THE STRENGTH OF OUR REGIONAL COMMUNITY

COMMUTER SERVICES SAVE A TON RIDE SOLUTIONS PASSENGER RAIL PUBLIC TRANSIT AIR QUALITY

EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT COLLABORATION URBAN TRANSPORTATION COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC

DEVELOPMENT REGIONAL VITALITY TOURISM HOMELESSNESS ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING GEOGRAPHIC

INFORMATION SYSTEMS BICYCLE AND PEDESTRIAN PLANNING WATER SUPPLY WAYFINDING AGE

WAVE ARTS AND CULTURE OUTDOOR RECREATION WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT LEADERSHIP

NATURAL RESOURCES FREIGHT AND INTERMODAL LOCAL GOVERNMENTS REGIONAL PARTNERSHIPS


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THE REGIONAL Commission Members and Local Governments (Served during program year July 1, 2012-June 30, 2013)

ALLEGHANY COUNTY

ROANOKE COUNTY

The Honorable Carolyn Barnette The Honorable Shannon Cox John Strutner

The Honorable Ed Elswick Clay Goodman, III The Honorable Kevin Hutchins Dean Martin, Treasurer The Honorable Charlotte Moore J. Lee E. Osborne

BOTETOURT COUNTY The Honorable Stephen Clinton Erin Henderson The Honorable Billy Martin, Sr. Chair Ned McElwaine

CITY OF COVINGTON J.B. Broughman The Honorable Bill Zimmerman

CITY OF ROANOKE

TOWN OF CLIFTON FORGE Darlene Burcham The Honorable Johnette Roberts

TOWN OF ROCKY MOUNT The Honorable Bobby Cundiff James Ervin

The Honorable Bill Bestpitch The Honorable David Bowers James Bullington The Honorable Ray Ferris Chris Morrill Braxton Naff

TOWN OF VINTON

CITY OF SALEM

Teresa Hammond

The Honorable Lisa Garst The Honorable Jane Johnson Vice Chair Melinda Payne

Alleghany Highlands Chamber of Commerce & Tourism

CRAIG COUNTY

Debbie Kavitz

The Honorable Richard Flora The Honorable Martha Murphy

Dr. John Rainone

FRANKLIN COUNTY The Honorable Bob Camicia Frank Chrzanowski The Honorable Ronnie Thompson The Honorable Charles Wagner Chris Whitlow

The Honorable Bradley E. Grose Chris Lawrence

LIAISON MEMBERS (NON-VOTING) Beth Doughty Roanoke Regional Partnership

Landon Howard Roanoke Valley Convention and Visitors Bureau Salem-Roanoke County Chamber of Commerce Dabney S. Lancaster Community College

Dr. Robert Sandel Virginia Western Community College

Joyce Waugh Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce Cover Image Courtesy Kurt Konrad Photography

THE MISSION To be a leader in driving collaboration and strategy within our communities on issues that are critical to the economic growth, quality of life, and sustainability of this region.


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COMMISSION

Uniting as a region to chart a clear path forward

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Kurt Konrad Photography

erving as Chairman of the to review the Commission’s work Regional Commission has in more detail. board for their active participation truly been a pleasure for in our meetings and programs. me. The Commission has As my tenure as Chairman comes I must, of course, recognize the accomplished a great deal with the to an end, I want to recognize those Commission’s very talented staff. support of our member governments that are most important in making They are the folks who ensure that and our partner organizations in the the Commission an important the projects on the annual work region. For example, our work on the player in regional cooperation, program are completed in a timely Partnership for a Livable Roanoke coordination and communication. and cost-effective fashion. Our staff Valley has brought together local Our member governments are the works closely with the elected officials governments in the and the staffs of our metro area with 60 member governments, other organizations The Commission has accomplished but they also serve as from the private sector, a liaison with several a great deal with the support of our federal and state higher education and non-profit sector to look I appreciate member governments and our partner agencies. at a new vision for the their dedication to the future of this area. Commission and the organizations in the region. citizens throughout Additionally, we have our region. We look coordinated state-mandated water key to the Commission’s success forward to continued progress in supply plans for communities in -- they are the “owners” of the promoting collaborative activities the Alleghany Highlands and the Commission. Without the active among our member governments. Roanoke Valley. These projects support of local governments, are just a few of the things the the Commission could not be Commission has undertaken recently. engaged in the various projects You will find a great many more we undertake each program Billy W. Martin, Sr. projects outlined in this Annual year. I wish to express my sincere Chairman Report. I hope you take the time appreciation to all members of our


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EXECUTIVE DIREC TOR’ S NOTE

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s I enter my 25th year as the Executive Director of the Regional Commission, I think about the many changes that the Commission has experienced during that time. Beyond the fact that we: purchased a building (the first PDC in Virginia to own their building), changed the name of the organization from the Fifth Planning District Commission to the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission, and changed our logo (twice) there are more important changes which have occurred. Over the years there has been an increased awareness of the need for and the pursuit of regional approaches to resolving issues facing our member governments. Since the 1990s, local governments in the region have examined regional approaches to water supply, stormwater management, regional jails, reducing air pollution, deployment of high-speed fiber broadband, revenue sharing to promote industrial development, and many other cooperative activities. These collaborative activities and others are highlighted in the Commission’s

award winning “Regional Report Card”, which outlines more than 100 collaborative projects involving multiple local governments. The staff of the Commission is dedicated to working with our member governments to assist them in efforts to make government operations more cost effective and efficient when the issue lends itself to a regional solution. I encourage our local governments to call on us if they feel there is an issue that could be addressed regionally. The past 25 years have gone by pretty quickly, at least it seems that way. I guess it may be true that “time flies when you’re having a good time”. It will be exciting to see what changes will occur in the future.

Wayne Strickland Executive Director

STAFF PHOTO Regional Commission Staff (left to right) Matt Miller, Eddie Wells, Jackie Pace, Jeremy Holmes, Bryan Hill, Cristina Finch, Wayne Strickland, Shane Sawyer, Jake Gilmer, Olivia Dooley, Mark McCaskill, Tyler Godsey


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FINANCIAL STATEMENT THE COMMISSION BRINGS IN $6.40 IN REVENUE FOR EVERY $1 INVESTED BY LOCAL GOVERNMENTS

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he Regional Commission’s financial performance has enabled it to finish the year with an increase in fund balance of $20,076.

REVENUE, GRANTS AND APPROPRIATIONS

2012-13

Federal Grants and Appropriations

$915,645

State Grants and Appropriations

$381,979

Local Grants and Appropriations

$253,737

In Kind Contributions

$37,938

Contract Income

$22,354

Other

$14,583

TOTAL REVENUE

REVENUE, GRANTS AND APPROPRIATIONS $37,938 (2%)

$22,354 (1%) $14,583 (1%)

State

$381,979 (24%)

Local

$915,645 (56%)

In Kind Contributions Contract Income Other

$1,626,236 EXPENSES

2012-13

Personnel

$881,939

Contract Services

$399,573

Operations/Misc Expenditures

$324,648

Operations/Misc Expenditures 20% Contract Services 25%

Federal

$253,737 (16%)

Personnel 55%

TOTAL EXPENSES FEDERAL FUNDING BREAKDOWN

2012-13

Regional Transportation Programs

$484,593

Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

$284,663

Appalachain Regional Commission (ARC)

$62,951

Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL)

$83,438

TOTAL FEDERAL FUNDING

$915,645

ARC 7% HUD 31%

TMDL 9% Regional Transportatio n Programs 53%

$1,606,160


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STRENGTHENING REGIO ROANOKE VALLEY BROADBAND AUTHORITY BOTETOURT AND ROANOKE COUNTIES JOIN THE CITIES OF SALEM AND ROANOKE TO FORM THE ROANOKE VALLEY BROADBAND AUTHORITY.

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n 2012, The Roanoke Valley eleven businesses and individuals. nine months developing a series Fiber/Broadband Task Force, The unique combination of public of recommendations which were coordinated by the RVARC, released in February 2013. The released a study entitled, task force recommended the ROANOKE VALLEY Moving Forward at the Speed creation of a regional Broadband of Light: Fiber Infrastructure for BROADBAND AUTHORITY BOARD Authority to implement a number the 21st Century, which showed of objectives to increase Kevin S. Boggess-City of Salem the Roanoke Region is lagging affordable access to broadband Clayton Goodman, III- Roanoke County behind other communities throughout the region, while Kathleen D. Guzi- Botetourt County when it comes to affordable making it easier for existing Michael McEvoy- Citizen broadband access. broadband providers to deploy Christopher P. Morrill-City of Roanoke their technology. The proposed The plan was supported by authority will be created by the City of Roanoke, Roanoke and private cooperation helped Botetourt County, Roanoke County, County, Greater Roanoke Valley facilitate the creation of a task the City of Roanoke and the City Development Foundation, Roanoke force representing both the private of Salem under Virginia’s Wireless Valley Development Corporation, and public sectors. The task force, Service Authority Act. City of Salem, Roanoke Regional comprised of business leaders Partnership, Botetourt County and and local governments, spent

As with infrastructure such as roads, rail and electricity, government can complement the private sector in the development of infrastructure to meet the long term needs of the Roanoke Valley.


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ONAL INFRASTRUCTURE WHAT IS THE AUTHORITY’S ROLE?

• The Authority will work with existing providers to improve the deployment of affordable broadband infrastructure. • The Authority will facilitate cooperation between the member governments to develop consistent policies and cooperative partnerships • The Authority will work to deploy fiber infrastructure where it is economically feasible and beneficial to economic development, public safety and education.

DON’T WE ALREADY HAVE HIGH SPEED INTERNET?

• Yes, most of the urbanized area in the Roanoke Valley has access to high speed Internet. However, they may only have one provider to choose from; the infrastructure may not support speeds needed in the future; and the cost of service may not be affordable. • Many other regions are far ahead of the Roanoke Valley in addressing speed, capacity and cost infrastructure. • More rural areas may not have access to any wired infrastructure.

WHAT ABOUT THE PRIVATE SECTOR?

• The private sector is best suited for the efficient delivery of broadband services on their existing networks, but operate primarily on a profit driven model. • The Authority can focus on the long term public benefit of broadband while lowering the costs for the private sector.

Kurt Konrad Photography


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IMPROVING OUR REGIO ROANOKE VALLEY AREA METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATION (MPO) Policy Board Members (July 2012-June 2013)

BEDFORD COUNTY The Honorable Bill Thomasson BOTETOURT COUNTY The Honorable Billy Martin, Vice Chair Ron Smith ROANOKE COUNTY The Honorable Richard Flora, Chair The Honorable Charlotte Moore (Alternate: The Honorable Ed Elswick)

MONTGOMERY COUNTY The Honorable Annette Perkins

(Alternate: The Honorable James Politis)

CITY OF ROANOKE Dr. M. Rupert Cutler The Honorable Ray Ferris CITY OF SALEM The Honorable Jane Johnson Melinda Payne TOWN OF VINTON The Honorable Doug Adams Carolyn Fidler GREATER ROANOKE TRANSIT COMPANY (VALLEY METRO) Carl Palmer (Alternate: Kevin Price) ROANOKE REGIONAL AIRPORT COMMISSION Jacqueline L. Shuck (Alternate: Efren Gonzalez)

ROANOKE VALLEY- ALLEGHANY REGIONAL COMMISSION J. Lee E. Osborne VDOT – SALEM DISTRICT Rob Cary, P.E. (Alternate: Tommy DiGiulian) VIRGINIA DEPT. OF RAIL & PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION Michael Todd NON-VOTING MEMBERS Tammye Davis- Federal Highway

Administration Tony Cho- Federal Transit Administration

FU N D I N G OU R R EGI O N ’ S G R

LOCALITIES RECEIVED $12.7 MILLION TO COMPLETE ROANO

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n May of 2013, the Roanoke Valley Area Metropolitan Planning Organization Policy Board (MPO) approved over $28 million in funding for 15 transportation projects in the Roanoke urbanized area over the next six years.Local governments, Valley Metro, and other eligible transportation agencies submitted over $33 million in project requests to be funded by the new cooperative program. The top three projects included $12.7 million to finish construction of the Roanoke River Greenway and two studies: one to conduct a transportation and economic impact assessment of the proposed Norfolk Southern intermodal center in Elliston, and the other to look at the feasibility of a multi-modal transportation center in downtown Roanoke that would help evaluate the future needs of Valley Metro public transit service and passenger rail service.

Courtesy Loren Wright

When completed, t Greenway will be urban greenway United

INNOVATION IN TRANS

THE REGIONAL COMMISSION UTILIZES READILY AVAILABLE TEC

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he Regional Commission is continuously looking for ways to incorporate new and innovative technologies into our work. In the this spirit, the Regional Commission began its work on the region’s first ever Congestion Management Process (CMP) Plan. Staff approached the new project by innovating along two dimensions: 1) Workflow 2) Analysis. To improve workflow and efficiency, the staff used Google Drive, which allows multiple users to update and collaborate on the document simultaneously.

Congestion Points

Sample


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ONAL TRANSPORTATION TRANSIT HIGHLIGHTS

REEN WAYS

OKE RIVER GREENWAY BY 2017

ADDITIONAL PROJECTS FUNDED • Smartway Bus Replacement • Plantation Rd. Bike/Ped Improvement Project • Exit 140 Park and Ride Reconstruction • West Main St. Pedestrian Improvement Project • Walnut Ave. Phase I • Glade/Tinker Creek Greenway Bridge • Walnut Ave. Phase II

the Roanoke River one of the longest ys in the Eastern States.

• Downtown Roanoke Signal Coordination • Tinker Creek Greenway Corridor Planning Study • Botetourt and Roanoke Counties Greenway Connectivity Study

SPORTATION PLANNING

CHNOLOGY TO IMPROVE EFFICIENCY AND CAPTURE NEW DATA

e Google Traffic Snapshot

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n an effort to improve our analysis and data collection, staff incorporated Google’s Live Traffic feed to create daily snapshots of our region’s most congested areas. The program estimates real-time traffic congestion using signals from Android phones. These snapshots were aggregated and further used to determine the 10 areas of emphasis that will be the focal point of the CMP Plan. The CMP Plan provides just one example of how we continue to integrate today’s rapidly expanding technology into our ongoing work at the Regional Commission.

BUS STOP ACCESSIBILITY STUDY

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n response to a request by Valley Metro and the Blue Ridge Independent Living Center, bus stops were analyzed to determine what improvements were needed to provide easier access particularly for people with disabilities. Using National Transit Database survey data, staff developed a process to determine the most active bus stops in the system as a function of total boardings, alightings, and the frequency with which the bus stopped at a location. In short, the region contains more than 900 bus stops, yet even the most active bus stops lack basic accessible accommodations. By working together, Valley Metro, local governments, and private property owners have great opportunities to improve bus stop accessibility in our region.

EASIER TRANSIT TRAVEL BETWEEN CITIES IN THE ROANOKE VALLEY

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or too many years, taking the bus from Salem to anywhere else in the Roanoke Valley required at least one bus transfer and in most cases two. Over the past year, the City of Salem, the City of Roanoke, Valley Metro, and the Regional Commission worked together to integrate the Salem and Roanoke transit lines. Spurred by the desire to incorporate the Salem Walmart into the transit system, several new features were also added. Passengers no longer need to transfer buses at the Salem Goodwill. Two commuter services at 5:35 a.m. and 6:35 a.m. travel direct from Salem Walmart to Campbell Court.


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REGIONAL SOLUTIONS

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IDE Solutions and the Regional Commission continue to support and create transportation opportunities for commuters and travelers throughout the region. We are focused on creating tools that improve access to our commuter support services for anyone, anytime and anywhere. Tools like Google Transit and the Regional Ride Guide combine with our growing online resources like carpool matching and interactive bike routes are key to addressing some of our region’s transportation needs.

RIDE Solutions has become one of the nation’s most respected TDM agencies for its creativity and unique approaches towards

community engagement. The rapid growth and success of its Bike Month events are a key part of this. The Bike Shorts Film Festival, the Clean Commute Challenge, and the Night Rider’s Ball are the feature events for each Bike Month.

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e create strong bonds with our region through innovative events, strategic collaboration, art, and effective commuter services. These bonds help us better understand the needs and demands of regional commuters and enable us to better provide new tools and solutions to help with their transportation needs.

THE REGIONAL TOOLKIT FOR COMMUTERS RIDE SOLUTIONS LAUNCHES NEW WEBSITE

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fter formally expanding our services to the Region 2000 market, we sought to improve our online presence with a complete overhaul of our website. The new site is full of new features to help members explore their transportation options. It includes a robust new member area that allows users to better manage their commuter profiles and access their carpool match list online. It streamlines the Guaranteed Ride Home program enabling users to generate online vouchers, thus reducing paper/material waste and administrative overhead. As a result,

members now have access to the most up-to-date information about alternative transportation throughout the region and will be able to take advantage of new opportunities more efficiently than ever before.

GOOGLE TRANSIT

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IDE Solutions has partnered with regional transit providers Valley

Metro and RADAR to provide up-todate routing and schedule information via Google Maps. The Google Maps service will now provide transit options for trips anywhere in the Roanoke Valley and Alleghany Highlands region in addition to the Smartway and Smartway Connector routes between Blacksburg and Lynchburg. The trip planner can be found at ridesolutions.org, valleymetro.com, and radartransit.org, as well as directly through Google Maps. The tool can also be accessed through smartphones and tablets through the Google Maps app or web browser.


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REGIONAL PARTNERSHIPS PARTNERSHIP FOR A LIVABLE ROANOKE VALLEY

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hat does the future hold for the Roanoke Valley of Virginia? How can we ensure a strong quality of life in our communities? How can we improve access to opportunities for our citizens? These are some of the questions that the Partnership for a Livable Roanoke Valley has posed and is looking for answers. The Partnership for a Livable Roanoke Valley (Livable Roanoke Valley) is an initiative of more than 60 organizations in the Roanoke Metropolitan Statistical Area of Virginia, and is being led by the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission and Council of Community Services. The initiative seeks to promote economic opportunity and a greater quality of life for all Roanoke Valley residents through the development of the Valley’s first integrated regional plan. Founded in 2011, Livable Roanoke Valley has taken a straight-forward approach to understanding and addressing key issues affecting the region. We started by engaging partners, organizations, and citizens to gain a strong understanding of our region’s values, vision, and priorities. Then we developed a picture of potential futures for the region based on a detailed understanding of key trends at the local, state, and national level. Based on the input and possible futures, we developed four primary goals in the areas of economic development, workforce, health, and natural assets. We are now engaged in the important work of developing a small number of regionally supported strategies to reach our vision and goals. During the fall of 2013, we will develop measures of success and gain

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VISION STATEMENT

e are living the dream. Beautiful mountains. Clean rivers and streams. People who care. The Roanoke Valley is filled with promise. To make the most of these opportunities, we will work to provide quality education, access to healthcare, work and career opportunities, responsible stewardship of the environment, and greater regional cooperation. As we strive to fulfill our promises, we will be the destination for individuals, families and businesses who share the same dream that we do. commitments from key organizations and local governments to work towards You can learn more about Livable Roanoke Valley by visiting implementation of the strategies. WWW.LIVABLEROANOKE.ORG The final Livable Roanoke Valley or join the discussion at Plan will be adopted and launched WWW.IDEAS.LIVABLEROANOKE.ORG. in early 2014.


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SUPPORTING OUR REG R EG IO NA L WO R K P ROJ EC T S

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SAVE-A-TON

n 2011, a coalition of local governments and nonprofits launched Save-a-Ton, a regional energy efficiency and conservation education campaign that seeks to help owners find easy, low- or no-cost ways to cut their utility bills, and to link consumers with local businesses who can help them take the next steps in improving their home's performance. The Commission took on management of the effort in 2012 under its sustainability programs. The

effort has two main presences - its website, a t w w w. saveaton. org, and a Facebook page. In fiscal year 2013, the site saw 5,800 pageviews, and the Facebook page currently has over 1,100 fans. A key effort of Save-a-Ton is its partnership program, which provides a venue for local businesses who provide related goods or services to connect with local consumers. This focus sets Save-a-Ton apart from state- or national-level energy conservation programs. Save-a-Ton has partnered with 15 businesses and nonprofits through this effort, including media partners such as 101.5 The Music Place, to auditing and consulting firms such as Better Building Works LLC., to renewable energy contractors such as Direct Connect Solar and Powermark Electrical. This year, through an effort led by Roanoke County, Save-a-Ton was able to secure its first financial sponsorship from Fortune 500 company Honeywell. Their financial support will help Save-a-Ton market its message and grow its business partnerships, as well as set the foundation for further efforts to seek privatesector sponsorships to support the program's mission.

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THE REGIONAL SCO

he scope of the Regional Co beyond the programs liste services and projects that the Com • • • • • • •

Air Quality Planning Bicycle And Greenway Planning Comprehensive Planning Corridor Studies Demographic Analysis Economic Development Emergency And Hazard Mitigation Planninng • Environmental Planning • GIS And Mapping Services • Grant Writing And Management Assistance

PRE-DISASTER MITIGATION PLAN

The RVARC Regional Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan has been conditionally approved by FEMA and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management. Final approval will come from FEMA following adoption of the plan by the localities in the planning region. Localities must have an adopted Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan to remain eligible for Hazard Mitigation funding. Additional information about the plan,


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GIONAL COMMUNIT Y R EGIO N AL WO R K P ROJ EC T S

OPE OF OUR WORK

ommission’s work extends well ed in our Annual Report. Other mmission has supported include: • Leadership Trips • Long Range Transportation Planning • Regional Planners Luncheons • Rural Transportation • Transportation Improvement Program • Tourism • Webinar Hosting • Workforce Development

including the complete document and maps, can be found at:http:// goo.gl/Hc8J50

COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY (CEDS)

Commission staff worked with the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) Committee to update the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional CEDS document. The

CEDS is updated annually and is a regional strategy that reflects local economic development needs and priorities. The CEDS planning process is a continuous process that enhances regional economic competitiveness and facilitates the implementation of regional priorities for investment. It establishes regional goals and objectives and includes a regional data profile, prioritized projects, performance measures, and an action plan for project implementation. The 2013 CEDS Annual Update may be accessed at: http://goo.gl/i93fGF

ROANOKE RIVER WATERSHED IMPLEMENTATION PLAN

The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) began the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Implementation Plan, or Clean-up Plan, for the Upper Roanoke River Watershed this past spring. The plan will identify Best Management Practices that will improve water quality in the watershed. DEQ will be working with The Louis Berger Group, local governments, and the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission to develop the Plan. The planning process will include opportunities for public involvement as well as input from stakeholder committees. More information is available at: http://goo.gl/S8jfiS

STORMWATER TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE

Commission staff is providing technical assistance to several of its member governments in implementing the new stormwater regulations which includes: • Grant management assistance for Craig County’s Department of Conservation & Recreation grant for development of a new stormwater ordinance and outreach materials. • Assistance to Alleghany County with development of a stormwater outreach brochure and public workshops. • Continuing to work with localities on the Regional Stormwater Committee.

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REGIONAL ROAD AHEAD 2 0 14 WO R K PRO G R AM HI G HL I G HT S PARTNERSHIP FOR A LIVABLE ROANOKE VALLEY

During the fall of 2013, the Commission will develop measures of success and gain commitments from key organizations and local governments to work towards implementation of the strategies.

REGIONAL STORMWATER MANAGEMENT SUPPORT

REGIONAL COMMISSION TO LAUNCH NEW WEBSITE IN NOVEMBER 2013

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he Regional Commission began planning to overhaul its website in 2012 following its rebranding process. Throughout 2012/13, staff has been working closely with Access Advertising to improve all facets of the Commission’s website. Addressing key areas such as site navigation and searching capabilities will enhance the user experience. The new site will enable visitors to easily explore the Commission’s various reports, maps, documents, and access other sources for researching and planning towards the vitality of our region.

Staff will continue to coordinate support of the Roanoke Regional Stormwater Management and Technical Committees through activities such as updating local government staff in addressing the requirements of new stormwater regulations, determining stormwater-related activities that could be handled on a regional basis and coordinating the development of a regional stormwater advisory committee composed of businesses, non-profits and other stakeholders.

ROANOKE VALLEY BROADBAND AUTHORITY

Staff will continue to support local government efforts related to the regional high-speed broadband initiative by providing meeting coordination, grant writing and procurement of any additional professional services.

INTERMODAL FREIGHT STUDY

A lot has happened since the previous studies on the proposed Intermodal Center at Ellistion: the 2008-09 downturn, construction to widen the Panama Canal by 2015, and the opening of other intermodal centers on the Heartland and Crescent Corridors. With this in mind, RVARC staff is working with Virginia’s Office of Intermodal Planning and Investment (OIPI) to engage a consultant to update an economic and transportation impact study taking into account the aforementioned national and global events.

RIDE SOLUTIONS

Staff will continue to operate RIDE Solutions, the regional TDM program, to create a greater public awareness of commuting options to address air quality and other environmental issues, as well as stimulate economic vitality by offering a cost-saving alternative to driving alone. Bike Month will continue to be a focal point for growing

events and supporting program related activities throughout its entire service area.

REGIONAL TRAILS, GREENWAY PLANNING AND BLUEWAYS

The staff will continue to support Botetourt County in planning and developing services to implement a trail plan that was developed with the assistance of RVARC in 2012. In addition, staff will work with Craig County to provide planning and development support for connecting downtown New Castle with the Craig County Sports Complex. Further, we will develop interactive and printable “Roanoke Valley Blue Way” maps for the Roanoke River from the Montgomery County/Roanoke County boundary to the Roanoke County/Franklin County boundary. We will continue to monitor trail usage and traffic within the Carvins Cove Nature Reserve and throughout various sections of the region’s greenways.

REGIONAL PEDESTRIAN AND TRANSIT VISION PLAN

Is being able to walk to places in our region important? If so, where? And, what is the region’s vision for public transit services? If the current system isn’t meeting people’s desires, what should our future transit system encompass? With Regional Greenways and Bikeways plans already in place, these two additional plans focusing on walking and public transit will be developed concurrently this year as the region puts together the pieces of its future multimodal transportation network.


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AWA R D S A N D R E C O G N I T I O N BILLY MARTIN ELECTED FIRST VICE PRESIDENT OF local governments and the public within their regions VAPDC through various programs focused on diversifying local Billy W. Martin, Sr., Botetourt County representative, was elected First Vice President of the Virginia Association of Planning District Commissions (VAPDC). The 21 planning district/regional commissions in the Commonwealth created the VAPDC to share best practices and promote regionalism across the State. www.vapdc.org

WAYNE STRICKLAND ELECTED TO NADO BOARD

The Regional Commission’s Executive Director, Wayne Strickland, was elected to the NADO 2013/2014 Board of Directors at NADO’s 46th Annual Business Meeting and Training Conference. The NADO Board of Directors oversees the association’s budget and operations and develops policy on issues affecting regional development organizations. NADO member organizations serve

economies, assisting businesses, creating jobs, and providing social services.

REGIONAL REPORT CARD

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he Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission was awarded a 2013 Innovation Award from the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) Research Foundation for the 2013 Regional Report Card: A Compilation of Regional Cooperative Initiatives & Activities. This marked the 6th time since 2007 that the Regional Commission has received an Innovation Award, which recognizes regional development organizations for improving the economic and community competitiveness of our nation’s regions and local communities.


Kurt Konrad Photography

313 Luck Ave., SW • PO Box 2569 • Roanoke, VA 24010 Ph: 540.343.4417 • Fax: 540.343.4416 Email: rvarc@rvarc.org • www.rvarc.org Media Inquiries: media@rvarc.org


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