Monday, April 29, 2013

PUBLIC NOTICE: City of Richmond Consolidated Plan Public Hearing


The City of Richmond is extending the public comment period for its 2013-15 Consolidated Plan and its 2013-14 Annual Action Plan until May 12, 2013.  These documents combine the planning, application, and reporting requirements for four HUD entitlement programs for which the City of Richmond receives funds: Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), HOME Investment Partnership (HOME), Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG), and Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA).  Comments, written and verbal, may be provided to Mr. Daniel Mouer at the Richmond Department of Economic and Community Development, 1500 E. Main Street, Room 400, Richmond, VA 23219, (804) 646-7025, Daniel.Mouer@richmondgov.com. In addition, a public hearing for these documents will be held by Richmond City Council on May 6, 2013 at 12:00 p.m. (this is a change in time from previous notice) in Council Chambers located in City Hall, 900 E. Broad Street. The City of Richmond does not discriminate on the basis of disability status in the admission or access to, or treatment in its federally assisted programs or activities:  Virginia Relay Center – TDD users 1-800-828-1120. 


Friday, April 26, 2013

City to Hold Land Use, Transportation & Design Workshop for Manchester Industrial District


The City’s Departments of Planning and Development Review and Public Works - Transportation, in conjunction with Kimley-Horn and Associates, will hold a two day Design Workshop to discuss zoning, land use, bulk and massing, character and quality of materials, public improvements, and transportation and parking as well as design standards for the Manchester Industrial District. The two day workshop will be held on Monday, April 29 from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Tuesday, April 30, from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Both workshops will be held in the event space at Planet Zero, which is located at 3 East 3rd Street. The public is invited and encouraged to attend.

The workshop will aid in preparing a traffic circulation study that will address parking, traffic flow and circulation in the Manchester Industrial District that will be required as the area redevelops. Kimley-Horn will staff the workshop with three urban designers and one transportation planner. The results of the Design Workshop will further develop a conceptual level Master Plan that will be the City’s guiding document to build upon in the continued revitalization of the Manchester Industrial District.

For more information, contact the City’s Office of Planning and Development Review at 646-6304.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Efficiency and Energy Upgrades to 1st Floor of City Hall



Public asked to be patient with appearance as safety upgrades take place

The City of Richmond is in the process of upgrading the fire alarm and egress lighting, and installing a sprinkler system at City Hall as part of a safety upgrades project. Additionally, the project includes lighting control in core public areas and office spaces for better energy management of light usage. Work has been on-going on various floors, and a major effort will now start on the First Floor of City Hall.

The lighting, fire alarm and sprinkler system upgrades will require the removal and replacement of the entire First Floor ceiling. This work will begin on the First Floor public lobby spaces on April 23, with the erection of a scaffolding system and containment barriers. The First Floor portion of the project is expected to be completed in mid-August. While scaffolding is in place, there will be signage to direct building visitors and employees and temporary lighting to supplement existing lighting, in order to maintain building access and business operations.

As is common of buildings of this age, City Halls First Floor lobby ceiling system contains asbestos materials. This will require special removal procedures which are standard for this type of work. The asbestos removal will be conducted by licensed contractors who are certified and trained to remove this type of material. The procedures will meet all Occupational Safety and Health Standards and mirror the same procedures that have been used on similar types of projects in older buildings in the City, such as at Virginia Commonwealth University.

The City has planned for all abatement work to take place during weekend hours to minimize any disruption to employees and the public. Further, additional measures are being put in place to ensure the safety of the indoor air quality, and France Environmental will be on site to conduct daily air quality measurement checks.

The City of Richmond regrets any inconvenience this safety upgrade project may cause those conducting business at City Hall and will be working to complete the upgrades as quickly and conveniently as possible.

Friday, April 12, 2013

2013 Earth Day Celebration at the 17th Street Farmers’ Market


The Richmond Earth Day Festival kicks-off on Saturday, April 20, 2013, from 11a.m. to 5 p.m. at the 17th Street Farmers’ Market in the city’s historic Shockoe Bottom. Admission to the festival is free.

The Richmond Earth Day Festival will entertain and educate attendees about local resources that make the world a better place, as well as featuring great live music and local food, beer and wine vendors. As one of the oldest Farmers’ Markets in the country, the 17th Street Farmers’ Market is the perfect location for attendees to explore the interactive areas of the festival that will include:

Eco-Home presented by Earth Craft Virginia
-        Energy efficient home supplies

-        Contractors/builders

-        Eco-friendly clothes/fabrics

-        Eco-friendly home services

Eco-Outdoors
-        Eco-friendly lawn care

-        Eco-friendly outdoor supplies

-        Eco-friendly lumber/play sets

Eco-Kids - An array of hands-on activities for kids of all ages provided by Backyard Farmer and Virginia Center for Latin American Art
-        Hands-on gardening activities

-        Games made out of repurposed materials

-        Eco-friendly art projects


Eco-On-the-Go

-        Eco-friendly cars

-        Eco-friendly modes of transportation

-        Coordinated group rides to and from the festival, a bike plaza as well as bike experts on-hand from Carytown Bikes, Bysolar, Ride Richmond and RA-MORE 

Eco-Marketplace
-        Environmentally friendly arts & crafts vendors

-        Local food producers & farms

-        Local wineries

Eco-Adventure Interactive
-        Rock climbing

-        Segway rides – presented by River City Segs

-        Sign up for exclusive Virginia Capital Trail walks/Richmond Slave Trail walks

-        Biking adventures

-        Interactive art demonstrations

Live music will take place throughout the day on two stages, and include performances by Susan Greenbaum, Upper East Side Big Band, Andy Vaughan and the Driveline and Sons of Zebedee. Festival guests can also enjoy an eco-friendly art court, where local artists will be on-site creating amazing large-scale sculptures that utilize recycled materials. The Mayor’s Youth Academy Future Leaders Council will be on-site selling small recyclable tote bags to raise funds to provide a book scholarship for students attending college in the fall.

The Richmond Earth Day Festival is produced by the City of Richmond in partnership with Enrichmond, a foundation serving Richmond’s people, parks and public spaces. The event is supported by Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia State University, University of Richmond, Sierra Club, James River Park System, Richmond Public Library Foundation, and many more. Event sponsors include Earth Craft Virginia, Brown Distributing, River City Recycling, NBC12, Cox Radio, and Dominion/Honeywell.

For more information on the Richmond Earth Day Festival visit http://www.earthdayrichmond.org.

City Customizes Traffic Plan for Monument Avenue 10k



~New traffic management system to help flow of traffic~

This Saturday, in support of the Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10k, the City of Richmond will be creating a custom traffic management plan with the goal of maximizing the flow of traffic and of race participants to and from the Monroe Park area. Through collaboration with Richmond Police, Emergency Management, Sports Backers and the Department of Public Works Traffic Engineering Division, the City has identified roads that historically have been congested and will modify traffic light cycle times in response to that data. Additionally, a traffic engineer will be onsite in the City's Mobile command post to make tweaks to the system in real time as necessary.

The City of Richmond Department of Public Works has recently completed 75% installation of a new state of the art traffic management system for the core of the City. In the next several years, this system will be installed throughout the City. "The advancements in this system are what make it possible to create or modify traffic patterns more efficiently in response to specific events," said Mayor Dwight C. Jones. "It is hoped that with this new system, the City will successfully reduce transit times and improve traffic patterns in and out of the City for scheduled special events. With some of the major events we have on the horizon, I am pleased that we are testing and improving upon our capacity for customized traffic management approaches at this time."

Thursday, April 11, 2013

City of Richmond and Comcast Partner to Beautify Byrd Park on Comcast Cares Day


Hundreds of Volunteers Expected as Part of Comcast’s Annual Nationwide Day of Service

WHAT:           Local volunteers, including City of Richmond and Comcast employees and their families and friends; the Mayor’s Participation, Action, and Communication Team (MPACT); Friends of Byrd Park, Clean City Commission, and Sierra Club – Fall of James chapter; and students from Virginia Commonwealth University and Virginia Union University, will beautify Byrd Park during Comcast’s 12th annual Comcast Cares Day. Volunteer activities will include planting and landscaping, cleaning and repairing the Ha’Penny Stage, clearing debris along the historic bridal path, cleaning alleys and sidewalks.

WHO:             City of Richmond and Comcast employees, their families and friends; other members of the local community.

WHEN:          Saturday, April 27 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
                       
WHERE:        Byrd Park (600 S. Boulevard)

ABOUT COMCAST CARES DAY:
April 27, 2013 will mark the 12th annual Comcast Cares Day, which has grown to be the largest single-day corporate volunteer effort in the country. Over the past 11 Comcast Cares Days, more than 437,000 Comcast employees and their families and friends have contributed more than 2.6 million hours of service at approximately 4,200 project sites across the nation. The Comcast Foundation also has given out more than $12 million in Comcast Cares Day grants over that period. This year, Comcast expects more than 70,000 volunteers to participate in more than 600 projects across the United States and, for the first time, in the United Kingdom. Comcast also anticipates reaching three million hours of service and more than 500,000 volunteers since the first Comcast Cares Day in 2001.

Local residents/groups interested in volunteering on Comcast Cares Day at Byrd Park can visit www.friendsofwilliambyrdpark.com or email friendsofwmbyrdpark@gmail.com.

Comcast has been committed to serving local communities since its founding 50 years ago. For more information on Comcast’s volunteer and community investment initiatives, visit www.comcast.com/community.


ABOUT BYRD PARK:
Byrd Park is a 287-acre park in Richmond and is one of the city’s most popular parks. Spread along both sides of The Boulevard and Blanton Avenue starting at the Columbus Statue you will find Fountain Lake, a self-lighted tennis complex for anytime play, and two softball fields. Sunbathing and pedal boat rides at Fountain Lake are popular in the summer, and a full-service concession building at the lakes offers snacks, lunch, restrooms and free Wi-Fi during the summer season.

Further south to the east of Blanton Avenue are Swan Lake, Sheilds Lake, the Round House, which can be used for small meetings, and the Vitacourse, an exercise trail popular year-round. At the southern end of Blanton Avenue are the park's historic World War I Carillon, the Dogwood Dell Amphitheater and Ha'Penny Stage, additional picnic shelters, a children's playground, and the popular Barker Field Dog Park.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

City of Richmond Advises Motorists To Be Mindful of Street Closings/Restriction for Monument 10K


The City of Richmond's Police Department asks motorists to be mindful of runners, street closings and parking restrictions for the Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10K this Saturday. The events begins at 8 a.m. on Saturday, April 13, with the Virginia 529 Kids Run. The first wave of the 10K steps off 8:30 a.m. near Broad and Harrison streets. The 10K’s finish line is on Franklin Street next to Monroe Park.

Logistics of the 10K will require numerous street closings and traffic pattern changes throughout the city beginning with parking restrictions starting at 1 p.m. on Friday, April 12. Restrictions and closures will continue until 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 13.

Richmond Police reminds all 10K event participants and attendees to take advantage of parking in the decks near the start and finish lines and to not leave any items that may tempt would-be thieves in plain view in your vehicle, regardless of where you park.

Following are the Richmond Police closings and changes scheduled from 4 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday:

·      Broad Street from Belvidere Street to Lombardy Street will be closed from 4 a.m. to noon. The recommended detour for westbound traffic on Broad is right on Belvidere, left on Leigh Street and left on Allen Avenue. The recommended detour for eastbound traffic on Broad is left on Allen, right on Leigh and right on Belvidere.
·      Kent will be closed from Wythe to Monument Avenue from 4 a.m. to 2 p.m.
·      Laurel Street will be closed from Main to Broad streets from 4 a.m. to 3 p.m.
·      Cathedral Place will be closed from Laurel to Shafer Ct from 4 a.m. to 3 p.m.
·      Harrison will be closed from Park to Marshall from 4 a.m. to 2 p.m.
·      Franklin Street will be closed from Laurel to Stuart Circle from 4 a.m. to
2:30 p.m. and from Lombardy to Harrison from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
·      Lombardy Street will be closed from Broad to Hanover Avenue from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
·      Chantilly will be closed from Monumental to Monument from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m.
·      Canal Street will be closed from Belvidere to 2nd Street from 5 a.m. to 3 p.m.
·      Park Avenue will be closed from Shafer to Lombardy from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m.
·      Exit ramp from Westbound I-195 to Belvidere will be closed from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.
·      Hanover will be closed from Plum to Lombardy from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m.
·      Grace Street will be closed from Belvidere to Allen from 7 a.m. to noon.
·    Monument Avenue will be closed from Staples Mill Road to Stuart Circle (Lombardy Street) from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. The recommended detour for eastbound traffic is left on Staples Mill, right on Broad, left on Allen, right on Leigh and right on Belvidere. The recommended detour for westbound traffic is right on Belvidere, left on Leigh, left on Allen and right on Broad.
·  The Boulevard will be closed at Monument Avenue from 8:30 a.m. to noon. The recommended detour for northbound traffic is left on Park Avenue, right on Thompson Street to I-195. The recommended detour for southbound traffic is right on Grace Street, right on Thompson Street, left on Broad Street, left on Hamilton Street to I-195.

There will be many street closings for all north and south streets intersecting Monument Avenue and Franklin Street from Staples Mill Road to Belvidere Street. Motorists are strongly encouraged to use I-95 and I-195 to travel around the city.

In addition to the street closings, parking will be prohibited prior to and during the 10K on the following streets:

1 p.m. Friday, April 12, to 3 p.m. Saturday
·      Both sides of Franklin Street from Laurel to Belvidere

3 p.m. Friday, April 12, to noon Saturday
·      Both sides of Broad Street from Belvidere to Lombardy
·      Both sides of Franklin Street from Belvidere to Shafer
·      Both sides of Laurel Street from Grace to Cathedral
·      Southbound lanes of Belvidere from Broad to Main Street

4 a.m. to noon Saturday
·      Both sides of Monument Avenue from Stuart Circle to Staples Mill
·      Both sides of Franklin Street from Stuart Circle to Shafer
·      Both sides of Laurel Street from Cathedral to Main
·      Both sides of Park Avenue from Harrison to Linden
·      Both sides of Lombardy from Park to Monument 

4 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday
·      Both sides of Chantilly Street from Monument to Monumental
·      Both sides of Kent Street from Wythe to Monument

5 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday
·      Both sides of Blacker from Monument to Monumental

In addition, parking will be prohibited on both sides of Lombardy from Broad to Stuart Circle from 4 to 10 a.m. Saturday and both sides of Grace from Belvidere to Allen from 4 to 10:30 a.m.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Mayor Jones to Recognize Over 100 Local Volunteers


~National day of recognition to be held by mayors across the country~

Richmond, VA --- Mayor Dwight C. Jones has pledged to participate in the inaugural Mayors Day of Recognition for Volunteer Service on Tuesday, April 9, 2013. On this day, Mayors across the country will hold public events and use traditional and social media to highlight the value of service to the nation’s cities. City residents are invited to attend Mayor Jones’ Day of Recognition for Volunteer Service on April 9 at 9:30 a.m., at the 17th Street Farmer’s Market in the historic Shockoe Bottom. Mayor Jones will be joined by City employees and others to thank the 192 national volunteers (specifically, the AmeriCorps, VISTAS, Foster Grandparents, and Retired Senior Volunteers) who serve within the city and are helping to ‘Build the Best Richmond’.

“I encourage city residents to join me in recognizing and celebrating our volunteers,” said Mayor Jones. “It is important for us to come together and serve our community, especially our seniors, through volunteerism. It is an honor to take part in this National Day of Recognition for Volunteer Service.”

Mayor Jones’ Neighbor-to-Neighbor (N2N) initiative has convened both the City’s Office on Aging and Disabilities and Senior Connections to make April 9 not just a day of recognition, but also a day of service. After the event, N2N and the city’s AmeriCorps ACES program will have national members, along with approximately 160 Virginia Commonwealth University students, provide volunteer services at four Senior Connection’s Friendship Cafes and perform spring cleaning (both inside and/or outside) at 40 homes of elderly residents.

Who:              Mayor Dwight C. Jones

What:             Day of recognition to honor national and local volunteers

When:            Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at 9:30 a.m.

Where:           17th Street Farmer’s Market

Parking is available in the main lot located at 100 N. 17th Street. Due to street closures for the event, the main lot will only be accessible from 17th Street (off of East Broad Street) to Grace Street. The parking lot will be immediately on the left. East Main Street to 17th Street AND East Broad Street to 18th Street will not be accessible. 

Background:
Mayor Jones launched the N2N to engage residents and City employees in volunteerism and to promote a new era of collaborative service as a strategy for City government. N2N projects have included mentoring children in schools, visiting the elderly, as well as providing home repairs for the elderly population, beautification projects throughout the city, supporting various special events, and youth programs to include back-to-school shopping and several others.

If you are interested in volunteering with N2N or for a list of upcoming volunteer opportunities, please visit http://www.richmondgov.com/NeighborToNeighbor. Once registered, you will receive an email confirmation of your volunteer reservations, including the volunteer location and contact information. 

If you have any questions or need assistance with registering with N2N, please call (804) 646-6528.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

City Arbor Day Events to Include Professional Tree Climbing Championship


~Climbers from Several States to Compete~

Professional tree climbers from Maryland, West Virginia and Washington, DC will head to Richmond on Saturday, April 6, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., for the City’s first weekend of Arbor Day festivities at Byrd Park. This year’s festivities at Byrd Park include a competition held by the Mid-Atlantic Chapter International Society of Arboriculture (MAC-ISA).  The contestants are specialists within the arboriculture profession who make a living being suspended from ropes, sometimes more than 100 feet in the air, pruning and maintaining trees. The competition will test their skills in several areas, including speed climbing and aerial rescue. On Sunday the top finishers will compete in the Master’s Challenge at 8 a.m. 
The pros are not the only ones who will be able to climb. There also will be recreational tree climbing for the public from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., as well a tree-care equipment and supply vendors.  
Once again, Richmond has received a Tree City USA designation from the National Arbor Day Foundation. This marks the 22nd consecutive year the City has received this honor. A proclamation from Mayor Dwight C. Jones also will be read.
On April 20, at the Byrd Park Roundhouse, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Richmond Tree Stewards will recognize Arbor Day with instructions for maintaining trees, as well as learning how to select, prune, plant and identify species of trees. There also will be activities for children.  
For more information on City services and schedules, please visit www.RichmondGov.com