Skip to main content

PennDOT, speakers share progress, ideas at S.A.V.E. event

11/13/2013 02:47PM, Published by ACL, Categories: In Print


Nationally-known urban planner Joe Minicozzi served as the keynote speaker during a Nov. 8 presentation in Kennett Square, in a presentation that introduced ideas designed to potentially calm traffic patterns along the Route 41 corridor.



By Richard L. Gaw

Staff Writer

 

Investment in a town's transportation infrastructure and its downtown is not only wise environmentally, it increases its' land value, said two nationally-known urban planners at a presentation held Nov. 8 at the Yellow House in Kennett Square.

"The Skinny 2013," sponsored by S.A.V.E. (Safety, Agriculture, Villages and Environment, Inc.), a local community organization that advocates safe and sustainable roads throughout Chester County, brought together more than 100 elected officials, conservation authorities and concerned citizens, in a consortium of ideas specifically wrapped around the future of the Route 41 corridor.

Image titleSaying that towns continually choose development patterns that don't reward them financially, keynote speaker Joe Minicozzi, an architect with Urban3, an Asheville, N.C.-based consulting company,  said a town could receive more in tax revenues by investing in downtown areas, as opposed to projects like box stores located on the outskirts of the town. Minicozzi said that he sees cities, towns and villages as a form of DNA, and that towns have been put here hundreds of years ago, and have a trajectory to grow. "If they're not growing, they're dying," he said.

Minicozzi has been involved in the successful revitalization of Asheville, an initiative that has lured several for-profit businesses to locate in downtown neighborhoods. One of the buildings Urban3 renovated was one that the company ultimately converted into a 26-unit apartment complex. After its completion, many of the idea's critics believed that investment in the building was not a wise business decision, but Minicozzi said that the complex  has been 99 percent leased since it was first developed.

Downtown investment enables a town to increase its taxable value, Minicozzi said, who added that because of downtown development in Asheville, the value of the area has grown from $100 million in value 20 years ago, to $10 billion in value now.

Showing a wide land area of Raleigh, N.C. - a tangled, spaghetti strand of highway that snakes its way into the city, Minicozzi said that that area the highway comprises in the city's limits pays no taxes, but development in the downtown area there could potentially grow city, county and school taxes that could net over $100 million over a 50-year period.

"That opportunity is all gone when you just give tax revenue potential over to a highway," Minicozzi said. "Grow your community, but do it in a way that you can increase your community's value. Do the work. Help provide a vision, but work with your community in a way that they know it's all going to work.

"You're all shareholders in this thing called Chester County, so your cash flow is your investment in your community, and how you pay for its services is out of its tax dollars," he said. "Think of citizens as shareholders in two corporations - the town and the county. These small towns and Main Streets actually produce more potent value in taxes, and it's your responsibility to cultivate that. It's more work, but you get more in return."

Ian Lockwood, a Florida-based professional engineer recognized nationally for his work on historic preservation and traffic calming, introduced engineering work he consulted for on Route 50 near Middleburgh, Va., which he called a model for smart-growth highway construction. Originally, based on forecasts by the state's department of transportation, Route 50 was expected to reach traffic over-saturation in 25 years, but thanks to the vision that local conservationists and planners shared with the department, what was created as a four-lane highway was softened as it wove through small towns. Using photographs in his presentation, Lockwood gave examples of how widened shoulders, the use of natural materials native to the region, and entry- and exit-feature zones created what he called a "context-sensitive design," that contributed to town centers increasing their walkability factor, while lessening disturbance caused by traffic.

"Local grass roots conservationists were up against conventional thinking, but over time, the people's vision prevailed," he told the audience.

Lockwood said that he supports the idea of placing roundabouts along the Route 41 corridor, as a means of slowing traffic down. "They don't break down, they don't require electricity, they can be incredibly safe, and they give the notion of traffic calming in order to reduce speeding," he said. "Nobody speeds up for a roundabout. That's why they have such stellar safety records. People go through them slowly. If there are accidents, they're much less severe."

Tim Stevenson, a representative from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT), identified various improvements that the state agency is planning for the area. He said that during next spring, PennDOT will construct a roundabout at the intersection of Wawaset Road and Route 52, which he estimated will cost $2 million. He also said that PennDOT is about to enter the "listening" phase of projects along the Route 41 corridor that will ultimately improve traffic flow, including the re-design of the Route 926-Route 41 intersection.

"The first component of any project is identifying its purpose and needs, to gauge the community and ask what the needs are and capturing what those needs are," Stevenson said. "After receiving input from all townships, Penn DOT will then put together a purpose and needs statements sometime during the next few months, then plan some developments along intersection along Route 41."

Stevenson said the coordination between PennDOT and local resource agencies involved with such development is expected to take a few years.

Before introducing the speakers, S.A.V.E. Executive Director Julie Gardner said future development along Route 41 should be done in a way "that preserves our agriculture, enhances our villages and protects our environment."

Until recently, she said, local conservationists and planners could see few prospects for improvement along the corridor, but pointed to several recent initiatives that have been introduced into on-going talks. "In 2012, residents got their comments into the hands of the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission and PennDOT, asking for safety improvements and traffic calming," said Gardner, who also praised a letter that was written by elected officials from five area townships and circulated to PennDOT and state officials, asking for consideration of several design and safety initiatives for Route 41.

Ronald Bailey, executive director of the the Chester County Planning Commission, compared the commission's current projects to the legs of a stool, much of them on point with Minicozzi's presentation. "Our plan calls for investing in existing communities within the infrastructure of boroughs, to make investments in preserving farm land and open space, to investing in partners that assists municipalities to upgrade their ordinances, and protecting the quality of life within the county," Bailey said.

Minicozzi also spoke at "The Dollars and Sense of Land Use," a presentation sponsored by the Brandywine Conservancy Environmental Management Center on Nov. 9. The event, intended to explore how development patterns can impact community wealth, also featured a panel discussion with Minicozzi, Bailey, Bryn Mawr Economics professor David Ross and East Whiteland Township manager Terry Woodman.


Like what you're reading? Subscribe to Chester County's free newsletter to catch every headline



penndot inc. agriculture safety s.a.v.e. villages and environment


You might also like

Thumb_chart-2

Improvements planned for New Garden intersection

The intersection of Gap Newport Pike and Newark Road will receive a much needed makeover in the near future.
Thumb_new-garden-air-field

New Garden Flying Field to receive $1.2 million federal grant

Funding comes through PennDOT's aviation development program and the Federal Aviation Administration's block grant program.

Elk Ridge School welcomes back agricultural singer-songwriter

KJ Reimensnyder-Wagner visited Elk Ridge Elementary School for a special "Ag Day with KJ" prior to the end of the school year.

  • Sunday Brunch

    05/22/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • The Spayed Club now has THREE transport locations throughout the Greater Philadelphia area -- Pot...


  • Fitness Walks

    05/27/2015
    08:30am — 09:30am

    Turn off the treadmill and forget they gym! Start your day with an invigorating hour-long hike th...


  • Gentle Yoga

    05/27/2015
    05:00pm — 06:00pm

    Reduce the aches and pains of age by increasing your range of motion through the practice of yoga...


  • Join us at Child Guidance's Coatesville Office for an in-depth workshop that will address what is...


  • Hatha Yoga

    05/27/2015
    06:30pm — 07:30pm

    This series of vigorous exercises is designed to strengthen the body and increase flexibility whi...


  • Sunday Brunch

    05/28/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Heuchera: The Perfect Shade Plant

    05/28/2015
    01:00pm — 03:00pm

    Discover one of the most popular perennials for shade gardens. Mt. Cuba Center recently completed...


  • Clutterers Anonymous

    05/28/2015
    06:00pm — 07:00pm

    Clutterers Anonymous℠ (CLA℠) is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strengt...


  • Heart Health - Preventing Heart Disease & Strokes

    05/28/2015
    06:30pm — 07:30pm

    We will learn how healthier eating habits, a manageable fitness routine and simple stress managem...


  • Sunday Brunch

    05/22/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Annual Avon-Grove Memorial Parade

    05/23/2015
    09:00am — 12:00pm

    Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while ...


  • The Chester Springs Studio wood kiln is a two chamber noborigama, constructed in 2014 during a wo...


  • Sunday Brunch

    05/23/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Prehistoric Newlin Nature Walk

    05/23/2015
    01:30pm — 03:30am

    Become a time traveler in this exciting walk to explore signs of the Newlin Grist Mill nature par...


  • Philly POPS at Longwood Gardens for Memorial Day

    05/23/2015
    07:30pm — 09:00pm

    The upcoming Memorial Day holiday weekend provides the perfect opportunity for The Philly POPS to...


  • The Chester Springs Studio wood kiln is a two chamber noborigama, constructed in 2014 during a wo...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    05/24/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Taste Kennett Food Tours

    05/24/2015
    01:00pm — 04:00pm

    Taste Kennett Food Tours, creators of memorable, unique and fun food experiences, offer three-hou...


  • Taste Kennett Food Tours

    05/24/2015
    01:00pm — 04:00pm

    Taste Kennett Food Tours, creators of memorable, unique and fun food experiences, offer three-hou...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    05/25/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Monday's are Whiskey nights at Minihane's

    05/25/2015
    05:00pm — 11:00pm

    Whisky is not the same as Whiskey! There is some debate about whether or not Scottish distill...


  • Catch living history as the Mohican Base Ball Club (Mohican BBC) of Kennett Square play a exhibit...


  • Debtors Anonymous

    05/25/2015
    06:00pm — 07:00pm

    In D.A., our purpose is threefold: to stop incurring unsecured debt, to share our experience wit...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    05/26/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • The Spayed Club now has THREE transport locations throughout the Greater Philadelphia area -- Pot...


  • Fitness Walks

    05/27/2015
    08:30am — 09:30am

    Turn off the treadmill and forget they gym! Start your day with an invigorating hour-long hike th...


  • Gentle Yoga

    05/27/2015
    05:00pm — 06:00pm

    Reduce the aches and pains of age by increasing your range of motion through the practice of yoga...


  • Join us at Child Guidance's Coatesville Office for an in-depth workshop that will address what is...


  • Hatha Yoga

    05/27/2015
    06:30pm — 07:30pm

    This series of vigorous exercises is designed to strengthen the body and increase flexibility whi...


  • Sunday Brunch

    05/28/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Heuchera: The Perfect Shade Plant

    05/28/2015
    01:00pm — 03:00pm

    Discover one of the most popular perennials for shade gardens. Mt. Cuba Center recently completed...


  • Clutterers Anonymous

    05/28/2015
    06:00pm — 07:00pm

    Clutterers Anonymous℠ (CLA℠) is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strengt...


  • Heart Health - Preventing Heart Disease & Strokes

    05/28/2015
    06:30pm — 07:30pm

    We will learn how healthier eating habits, a manageable fitness routine and simple stress managem...


  • DFVA Greenville Summer Art Show

    05/29/2015
    10:00am — 07:00pm

    An impressive group of over thirty outstanding professional artists from the Brandywine Valley ar...


  • DFVA Summer Art Show

    05/29/2015
    10:00am — 07:00pm

    An impressive group of outstanding professional artists from the Brandywine Valley area will exhi...


  • Sunday Brunch

    05/29/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • PurpleStride Delaware 2015 - 5K Run/Walk

    05/30/2015
    08:00am — 11:00am

    The Delaware Affiliate of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is hosting its third annual Purple...


  • PurpleStride Delaware 2015 - 5K Run/Walk

    05/30/2015
    08:00am — 11:00am

    PurpleStride 2015 is a 5K run and family friendly walk. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is b...


  • Multi-Family Yard Sale in Oxford

    05/30/2015
    09:00am — 03:00pm

    Electronics, tools, baby clothes, toys, kitchen, bath, bedding, decorations, crafts and so much more


  • CLAY MONOPRINTING WITH MITCH LYONS

    05/30/2015
    10:00am — 04:00pm

    CLAY MONOPRINTING WITH MITCH LYONS Level: All levels, Limit: 10 students Instructor: Mitch Lyon...


  • The Chester Springs Studio wood kiln is a two chamber noborigama, constructed in 2014 during a wo...


  • DFVA Greenville Summer Art Show

    05/30/2015
    10:00am — 07:00pm

    An impressive group of over thirty outstanding professional artists from the Brandywine Valley ar...


  • DFVA Summer Art Show

    05/30/2015
    10:00am — 07:00pm

    An impressive group of outstanding professional artists from the Brandywine Valley area will exhi...


  • OA-BEST Expo

    05/30/2015
    10:00am — 02:00pm

    FUN FOR ALL! The Chester and Lancaster County communities have always been tied deeply to the ro...


  • Sunday Brunch

    05/30/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Explore Native Orchids

    05/30/2015
    01:00pm — 03:00pm

    Discover what makes native orchids so special. Join Smithsonian’s orchid expert Tom Mirenda as he...


  • Pawty at the Preserve

    05/30/2015
    03:00pm — 07:00pm

    Join Canine Partners for Life at Pawty at the Preserve, as we celebrate 25 years of creating life...


  • Multi-Family Yard Sale in Oxford

    05/31/2015
    09:00am — 03:00pm

    Electronics, tools, baby clothes, toys, kitchen, bath, bedding, decorations, crafts and so much more


  • CLAY MONOPRINTING WITH MITCH LYONS

    05/31/2015
    10:00am — 04:00pm

    CLAY MONOPRINTING WITH MITCH LYONS Level: All levels, Limit: 10 students Instructor: Mitch Lyon...


  • The Chester Springs Studio wood kiln is a two chamber noborigama, constructed in 2014 during a wo...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    05/31/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Taste Kennett Food Tours

    05/31/2015
    01:00pm — 04:00pm

    Taste Kennett Food Tours, creators of memorable, unique and fun food experiences, offer three-hou...


  • Taste Kennett Food Tours

    05/31/2015
    01:00pm — 04:00pm

    Taste Kennett Food Tours, creators of memorable, unique and fun food experiences, offer three-hou...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    06/01/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Monday's are Whiskey nights at Minihane's

    06/01/2015
    05:00pm — 11:00pm

    Whisky is not the same as Whiskey! There is some debate about whether or not Scottish distill...


  • Debtors Anonymous

    06/01/2015
    06:00pm — 07:00pm

    In D.A., our purpose is threefold: to stop incurring unsecured debt, to share our experience wit...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    06/02/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Wilmington Handbell Ensemble Concert

    06/02/2015
    07:30pm — 08:15pm

    Presents our spring concert program, "March On"


  • Gentle Yoga

    06/03/2015
    05:00pm — 06:00pm

    Reduce the aches and pains of age by increasing your range of motion through the practice of yoga...


  • Hatha Yoga

    06/03/2015
    06:30pm — 07:30pm

    This series of vigorous exercises is designed to strengthen the body and increase flexibility whi...


  • Sunday Brunch

    06/04/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Clutterers Anonymous

    06/04/2015
    06:00pm — 07:00pm

    Clutterers Anonymous℠ (CLA℠) is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strengt...


  • 5th Annual Twisted Vintner

    06/04/2015
    06:00pm — 09:00pm

    Concordville - Chadds Ford Rotary's fundraiser to support local charities includes Wine, Beer and...


  • Sunday Brunch

    06/05/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • On June 6th, the Avon Grove High School Football Team will be hosting a community yard sale. Tab...


  • The Chester Springs Studio wood kiln is a two chamber noborigama, constructed in 2014 during a wo...


  • Sunday Brunch

    06/06/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • 2015 Chester County Blues Barbeque

    06/06/2015
    02:00pm — 07:00pm

    The Chester County Blues BBQ is an annual event sponsored by the Coventry Lions Club featuring re...


  • Sustainable Splurges: A Feast for the Senses

    06/06/2015
    06:00pm — 08:00pm

    Enjoy delicious, locally made foods – wine, chocolate, honey and cheese – while roaming an exclu...


  • 150th Anniversary Civil War Reconciliation Ball

    06/06/2015
    06:00pm — 10:00pm

    Dinner, Dancing and an Auction! Reconciliation Ball to Commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the e...


  • The Chester Springs Studio wood kiln is a two chamber noborigama, constructed in 2014 during a wo...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    06/07/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Steamin' Day at Auburn Heights

    06/07/2015
    12:30pm — 04:30pm

    Join the Marshall Steam Museum at Auburn Heights for the first Steamin' Day of the season! New fo...


  • Taste Kennett Food Tours

    06/07/2015
    01:00pm — 04:00pm

    Taste Kennett Food Tours, creators of memorable, unique and fun food experiences, offer three-hou...


  • Taste Kennett Food Tours

    06/07/2015
    01:00pm — 04:00pm

    Taste Kennett Food Tours, creators of memorable, unique and fun food experiences, offer three-hou...


  • Mt. Cuba Center Plein Air Workshop

    06/08/2015
    09:30am — 03:30pm

    Appreciate the intricacies of painting outdoors as you interpret the beauty of Mt. Cuba Center's ...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    06/08/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Monday's are Whiskey nights at Minihane's

    06/08/2015
    05:00pm — 11:00pm

    Whisky is not the same as Whiskey! There is some debate about whether or not Scottish distill...


  • Debtors Anonymous

    06/08/2015
    06:00pm — 07:00pm

    In D.A., our purpose is threefold: to stop incurring unsecured debt, to share our experience wit...


  • Mt. Cuba Center Plein Air Workshop

    06/09/2015
    09:30am — 03:30pm

    Appreciate the intricacies of painting outdoors as you interpret the beauty of Mt. Cuba Center's ...


  • Half the Money, all the bottle. Every Tuesday

    06/09/2015
    11:00am — 09:00pm

    EVERY TUESDAY ‎Half the money, all the bottle.1/2 Price Bottle of Wine / Every Tuesday with your...


  • Fitness Walks

    06/10/2015
    08:30am — 09:30am

    Turn off the treadmill and forget the gym! Start your day with an invigorating hour-long hike thr...


  • Mt. Cuba Center Plein Air Workshop

    06/10/2015
    09:30am — 03:30pm

    Appreciate the intricacies of painting outdoors as you interpret the beauty of Mt. Cuba Center's ...


  • Gentle Yoga

    06/10/2015
    05:00pm — 06:00pm

    Reduce the aches and pains of age by increasing your range of motion through the practice of yoga...


  • Hatha Yoga

    06/10/2015
    06:30pm — 07:30pm

    This series of vigorous exercises is designed to strengthen the body and increase flexibility whi...


  • Mt. Cuba Center Plein Air Workshop

    06/11/2015
    09:30am — 03:30pm

    Appreciate the intricacies of painting outdoors as you interpret the beauty of Mt. Cuba Center's ...


  • Sunday Brunch

    06/11/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Clutterers Anonymous

    06/11/2015
    06:00pm — 07:00pm

    Clutterers Anonymous℠ (CLA℠) is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strengt...


  • Mt. Cuba Center Plein Air Workshop

    06/12/2015
    09:30am — 03:30pm

    Appreciate the intricacies of painting outdoors as you interpret the beauty of Mt. Cuba Center's ...


  • Sunday Brunch

    06/12/2015
    11:00am — 02:00pm

    Every Sunday from 11-2PM Continental Buffet, Waffle bar, fresh fruits, Mimosa, Bloody Mary an...


  • Enjoy a night out with friends at Mt. Cuba Center! Unwind as you sip wine and create garden maste...


Chester County High School Sports