A public input meeting was held Wednesday night to discuss the first phase of downtown improvement plans. One of the first projects scheduled will include a transformation of the East End Triangle, located at the intersection of Loudoun and E Market streets.
Town Manager Assistant Scott Parker said it’s important to keep the public informed in regards to what the project is going to entail, how traffic is going to be managed, and what the project is shaping up to look like. The $400,000 design has already been created and approved.
Acting Deputy Director Tom Brandon said the initial step in construction will begin with the relocation of the overhead utility lines by Dominion Virginia Power, Verizon and Comcast. Although a start date has not been scheduled the relocation is expected to be completed by June 30.
Construction of phase one will immediately follow, Brandon said. A new curb, short stone retaining wall, and decorative street signs will be put in place.
Landscaping will also be a big feature. The design calls for an eight inch caliper red oak, which will provide an immediate change in the appearance of the triangle.
“When we had a stakeholder’s meeting way back when it was determined that this is a gateway to the downtown and that’s what excites me the most,” Parker said. “It’s a nice inviting entrance and combine that with our phase two projects, which is coming up, it’s going to really go together well.”
Both men said that the plan is to construct the project at night in order to minimize impacts of Mom’s Apple Pie and other businesses in the area. The intention is to start construction work once all of the local businesses have closed.
Since the majority of work will be accomplished at night, Brandon said the traffic volumes will be significantly reduced. A traffic control plan will be put in place to make E Market Street one-way westbound and to make Loudoun Street one-way eastbound between the triangle and Harrison Street.
During the project, the public will be informed about the construction progress and what can be expected. A newsletter will be available and updates will be provided on the town’s website. The entire project is expected to be finished this fall.