Recap of 11/1 Meeting with Steve Yob, Henrico County Director of Special Works
November 1, 2018
The major topics pertaining to Westwood that were discussed at this meeting included:
- Traffic – how to improve existing and create new traffic calming measures
- Pedestrian Safety – how can we create pedestrian safe zones
- Flooding/drainage issues – how can home owners work with the County to address these issues
- What can be done regarding the maintenance of County owned green spaces in Westwood
Keeping in mind the recent Henrico County traffic study of Westwood (available on the WCA website), Mr. Yob addressed the above issues generally as well as, when possible, specifically. His remarks included the following:
- Regarding Bremo Road – its traffic, older speed bumps, lack of shoulders/sidewalks, and its use as a direct connector from West Broad Street to Monument and St. Mary’s Hospital, Mr. Yob stated that the County will examine the speed bumps to determine their effectiveness and if they need to be repaired or replaced. Although there is always tremendous expense with installing sidewalks, gutters, any other infrastructure additions/repairs, Bremo Road’s status/situation will be reviewed as to whether it is needed/feasible to install sidewalks or other pedestrian features to make walking safer. He stated that Bremo Road is a good candidate for sidewalks; he will contact the WCA with recommendations.
- West Club Lane – after much discussion about the speed of traffic on this street, and the desire for greater pedestrian safety, Mr. Yob stated that they will examine this street to make recommendations for options for pedestrian safety – which would also serve as traffic calming measures. Sidewalks are most likely not an option for West Club Lane, due to expense, however, there are other measures that could be taken. He will get back to the WCA with recommendations.
- Old Richmond Road – there are issues of drivers passing the entrance to the medical park on Bremo Road, and speeding onto Old Richmond Road to turn around (sometimes executing illegal turns). Yob will look into this, including the suggestions of speed bumps or rumble strips to discourage these dangerous drivers. He will contact WCA regarding this.
- Drainage issues – using a Westwood home owner’s situation with drainage issues as a basis for discussion, Mr. Yob gave the example that the County, although it cannot fix someone’s yard, will send employees out to examine the yard and make recommendations to the home owner regarding possible solutions. In addition, should there be any County infrastructure issues impacting these drainage issues, County staff will work to repair/find solutions to these (cleaning gutters, etc.). The County is particularly examining Horsepen Branch, part of which flows in Westwood, to see what can be done comprehensively to ensure its containment from flooding. (See the floodplain image below.)
- Green space (County-owned) maintenance – the parcels in the 5800 and 5900 blocks of Morningside Drive, along with the area along Fitzhugh between Devers and Morningside, need attention, whether it be better maintenance or, as in the case of Fitzhugh, taking what some consider an “eyesore” and making it into a pleasant site that can be enjoyed by residents and others (the Parks and Rec Department stated they would be interested in adding a bench or two, some low maintenance trees, keeping it cleared and clean, but don’t know how to go about it due to questions of jurisdiction). As there have been questions as to what departments of the County actually own/have jurisdiction over these parcels, Mr. Yob assured us he will look into this and get back to us about these issues.
- Yob also urged us to report pot holes, drainage issues, any other infrastructure problems as soon as possible to the County by calling 804-501-4393.
- The green space owned by the medical park on Bremo Road is somewhat of an eyesore; Jon Gwaltney, Henrico County Inspector, will work with nearby homeowner Conner Brown to determine the medical park property owners and determine a plan to contact them to urge better maintenance, some new landscaping, etc.
- Yob will look into installing a few new Neighborhood Watch signs in Westwood.
The traffic and safety subcommittee, together with the WCA board, will continue to examine these issues and possible solutions recommended by Mr. Yob, and pass these along to Westwood residents with updates at regularly scheduled WCA board meetings, as well as through email communication and the WCA website.
Steven J. Yob
Henrico County Director of Public Works
County of Henrico
Lead Zoning Inspector
To report potholes, drainage issues, other issues relating to public works please call 804-501-4393.
About The Henrico Department of Public Works
The Henrico Department of Public Works is responsible for developing, improving, and maintaining an efficient and safe transportation and drainage network for Henrico County. The Department of Public Works is divided into 7 Divisions: Administration, Construction, Design, Engineering and Environmental Services, Road Maintenance, Transportation Development (Capital Projects), and Traffic Engineering. These divisions insure that all engineering, construction, and maintenance work for roads, drainage, transit service, and erosion control follow the acceptable standards achievable with the efficient use of capital expenditures to provide the residents of Henrico County the ability to travel throughout the County in a safe manner and with minimum congestion.