Tuesday, October 9, 2018

City’s Office of Community Wealth Building Conrad Center Career Station Moving to the East District Initiative

The Conrad Center Career Station for the Office of Community Wealth Building (OCWB) is moving to the East District Initiative (EDI) building at 701 North 25th Street. The move is scheduled for October 15, 2018.

The Conrad Center Career Station assists residents seeking employment by offering classes, career planning, coaching and training for in demand occupations, all at no cost to the individual. 

The Conrad Center (1400 Oliver Hill Way), will serve as the temporary home for the Cold Weather Overflow Shelter from October 1, 2018 through April 15, 2019. The Cold Weather Overflow Shelter is a public safety program managed by the City of Richmond Department of Social Services. The Cold Weather Overflow Shelter is only open when the overnight temperature is forecasted to drop to 40 degrees or below. 

For more information about Community Wealth Building services, please call (804) 646-6374 or visit the OCWB website. 


Tuesday, October 2, 2018

City to Re-time Nearly 300 Traffic Signals in Downtown Area

Work will begin on October 6 to retime 300 signalized intersections around the city’s downtown area.  The project is a part of an initiative that began in January and included the retiming of 71 intersections in the Southside and 17 in the Northside.  

The city is working on the project in cooperation with the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), the Richmond Regional Planning Organization (RRTPO) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). 

The retiming initiative began in January and is part of an upcoming comprehensive initiative to deploy low cost, systemic pedestrian safety improvements at signalized intersections through 2020. These improvements include: high visibility crosswalks, accessible ramps, pedestrian countdown signals and improved signal timings. These improvements will increase pedestrian safety on our major arterials citywide at more than 390 signalized intersections. 

The project is in alignment with Mayor Levar M. Stoney’s announcement last October of the city’s participation in the Vision Zero initiative, which aims to reduce crashes causing serious injuries and death for all transportation users through updated traffic signal timings. Additional benefits of new timing plans include improving pedestrian safety and multi-modal mobility, decreased wear on motor vehicles, as well as improved gas mileage by reducing the number of stops and starts. There also will be significant environmental benefits through the reduction of vehicle emissions such as carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides and volatile organic compounds.  

The City is leveraging state and federal funding sources to implement this important timing project as part of an overall $3.5 million initiative to improve pedestrian safety through funding from the FHWA and VDOT's Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP), and $800,000 funded throughout the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) Program from RRTPO.
Due to the changes in some traffic signal operations, all transportation users are encouraged to be alert as they become accustomed to the new traffic patterns.  Each corridor takes several weeks to fine tune before the pattern is finalized. 

More information on Richmond’s Vision Zero Program and the Mayor’s Challenge can be found at:

If you have questions or concerns, please e-mail to Ask Public Works
(http://www.richmondgov.com/PublicWorks/index.aspx), or call the City’s Customer Care Center 3-1-1.

Monday, October 1, 2018

Mayor Introduces Legislation to Establish Richmond History and Culture Commission

Mayor Levar M. Stoney today announced he will submit legislation to City Council for its October 8 meeting establishing the Richmond History and Culture Commission.

“I think it is important that a city with such a rich culture and complex history as Richmond have an entity dedicated to understanding, evaluating and advancing its significant sites and landscapes,” said Mayor Stoney.

In recent years, the City of Richmond has undertaken serious efforts to determine how to effectively tell a more holistic and inclusive narrative of its history, from the work of Slave Trail Commission, to the Monument Avenue Commission, to the recent Urban Land Institute Rose Fellowship focus on Shockoe Valley.

“In order to take the next steps forward, we need to create a broad and coherent framework that will seek out the voices of local Richmonders and guide us as we embark upon these important projects,” the mayor added.

Commissions dedicated to historic resources exist in many cities across the country, including Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia. Fredericksburg and Virginia Beach are among those with similar bodies in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

If approved by city council, the History and Culture Commission would focus on items such as honoring and memorializing the history of Shockoe Bottom, and providing guidance on the recommendations of the Monument Avenue Commission regarding the reinterpretation of the Confederate statues on Monument Avenue, among others.

“This is the latest step in the city’s evolution to understand its past, tell its full story and by doing so, move us forward to a brighter future,” the mayor said.

The 13-member commission would serve as an advisory body to the mayor and be staffed by the Department of Planning and Development Review.

Mayor Stoney’s proposal also calls for two Richmond Public School high school students to serve on the commission, in addition to a member of city council, an assigned staff member and nine appointees.

“It is crucial to have young voices involved in these important conversations,” Mayor Stoney said. “They are the future of the City of Richmond and should have a say in what happens.”