Stop the Widening of Telegraph Road
Stop the Widening of Telegraph Road
Why this petition matters
Keep Hayfield Walkable!
VDOT announced a project to widen Telegraph road in the area next to Hayfield farm and the Elementary and Secondary schools of Hayfield. VDOT has three plans they are debating on to present to Lee District Supervisor Rodney Lusk and the Board Chairman Jeff McKay. We want them to understand that we do not want this.
In addition to writing letters we want to make our collective voices heard showing the number of residents who do not want this project to go forward.
The areas of concern are:
1.Environmental. VDOT is calling this a Spot improvement which according to their policies impacts only a single intersection and therefore does not require an environmental study to look at potential impacts of the project. Hayfield Farm is prone to flooding due to the neighborhood sitting below grade of the existing road, and very expensive taxpayer funded upgrades to the water and sewage utilities were just completed in Hayfield in 2021 due to flooding that destroyed two homes in 2011. The intersection in question at Hayfield and Telegraph was just completely redone as a part of this upgrade and now VDOT plans to spend money working on it again. Without an environmental study completed to see if the increase of road surface will negatively affect homes directly adjacent to the Telegraph road, or if the utilities just completed can handle the additional runoff which could negatively impact sewer lines further down into the neighborhood. Utilities will have to be moved along the residential side and the cost of those moves has not been completely factored into the project. Neighbors directly alongside telegraph road will likely lose several feet of their fenced in backyards, some temporarily while the project is underway between 2025 and 2029 to make room for the machinery, and some permanently as the road widening will require land.
2. Safety of students crossing the already busy road. Students crossing from the Secondary school are already having to deal with navigating the busy road without assistance such as Hawk walks that would safely slow and stop traffic when a pedestrian is present. VDOT has no such plans to add these features when they widen the road from 2 lanes to 4 lanes in the school zone, and merge lanes will then exist in the school zone which could cause traffic to speed up as faster drivers move to overtake slower drivers. Crossing guards are only available immediately after the bell rings for dismissal. Students with altered schedules or crossing after after school activities do not have such protections. Students who are crossing at the crosswalk at the light are dodging cars that are looking to turn when students have the right of way.
3.Lack of an updated traffic study. Outside of school drop off and pick up times, neighbors can affirm that there isn't a real traffic congestion problem that requires an expensive fix here. Traffic studies done by VDOT were done prior to the Pandemic which now could show a change due to a large number of individuals who work from home. The studies that were completed weren't made available to the public so we can’t comment on what problems they claim to be solving.
What we do know is that we do not want the additional vehicles that widening the road would bring. We do not want Telegraph road to be turned into a thoroughfare that would only benefit the commuters looking to shave a few minutes of time off of their commute as opposed to the real problems this would bring to local residents. We want to be able to safely turn left out of our developments, especially those without traffic lights. We want our children to be able to safely walk to school and school activities. We want our student drivers to have safe streets to drive home on. We want our homes to be safe from expensive flooding issues.
We do not want the Telegraph Road Widening project to go forward.