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The Comprehensive Plan presents a vision of Harrisonburg’s future. It identifies steps to move toward that vision by providing information about current conditions, long-term goals and objectives, and recommended implementation strategies. As described in the Code of Virginia, comprehensive plans are general in nature. Harrisonburg's Plan addresses a wide range of issues including but not limited to: land use, housing, education, transportation, recreation, the preservation of historic and natural resources, and economic development. The plan serves as a long-term guide for the community, and it helps City and community leaders with setting policies and decision-making. 

The draft chapters and more information about the workshops are available at https://www.harrisonburgva.gov/yourplan.

Community members are asked to review the draft chapters and provide comments on chapter background and goal, objective, and strategy statements associated with each chapter.  

Comment and discuss Chapter 12: Transportation and the Street Improvement Plan. The Street Improvement Plan identifies street/road improvement projects that the City might pursue and is represented by the map and text within Chapter 12. 

12 Responses

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Concerning Harrisonburg Crossing area: When Krispy Kreme and the Olive Garden were built, their presence created more congestion in an already overloaded area. It is very, very difficult to turn left from the parking areas near Home Depot and the restaurants nearby to enter Route 33 East or West. The lanes are backed up or completely blocked in that area. Cars are travelling past Barnes and Noble, Paneras, and others stores and cars juggle for spaces in either the left or right turn lanes.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

In the area of Mr. J’s, the Christian bookstore and other stores in that shopping area: Cars attempting to turn left into Harrisonburg Crossing usually find that very few cars will allow them to make that turn. While attempting that left turn, drivers also have to be aware of cars coming and going into or out of that area.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Route 81 concerns: Exit 247 B from 81 onto 33 East is a catastrophe waiting to happen. There is always dangerous backup on the 81 exit as cars on Rt. 33 heading East have to decide which lane to choose. Many times drivers who are traveling on Route 33 East do not move into a specific lane or change lanes suddenly. All cars have to decide which lane to travel in whether they are exiting 81 or traveling East on Route 33. Will it be East on 33, straight to the Mall, then right lane quickly towards the Mall, right to Hobby Lobby area or right and head towards Bank of America or beyond? Does the driver want to go towards Lowe’s? Since many drivers are unsure of which lane to be in, or don’t use turn signals that specific area is chaotic and very dangerous.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Route 81, Port Republic Road area: I am sure that you have heard many, many concerns about the Port Republic exit. Cars exiting from either direction off of 81 and attempting to enter Port Republic Rd. have a VERY limited amount of space to enter Port Republic Rd. All cars traveling west or east on Port Republic Rd. towards R. 11 are usually caught in a series of short timed lights which creates dangerous lane blocks. In those cases no one can cross onto Rt. 81 North or South, turn towards the JMU Convocation Center, travel East on Port Republic Road towards the stores and restaurants in that area Because of the blockage in this area, cars sit in the middle of each intersections long after the lights turn red which causes further road blockage and encourages drivers to go through red lights and then sit in the middle of intersections.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Erickson Ave. bypass from Rt. 11 : This bypass may have helped ease congestion from Route 11 but it has increased problems in the area as cars attempt to turn left towards 42 South, go straight or turn right towards Rt. 42 North. The volume of traffic and the speed of the cars on Erickson Ave. coming from Rt. 11 compounds this problem. Could the speed limit be decreased on Erickson Ave? This area requires timing and good luck to cross Erickson Ave.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Country Club Rd. area: I have read that Country Club Road will soon have new businesses near the Route 33 East and West. How will that congestion be handled as cars attempt to turn right onto Route 33 west, turn left towards 33 East or go straight towards the Mall?

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Exiting Route 81 near the Pilot Gas Station: This area has become very congested and confusing for drivers. Trucks exiting 81 trying to go to the gas station often stay in the far right lane and then swing wide and get into the left lane to enter the Pilot station. Any cars exiting Route 81 and turning into the left lane of traffic, attempting to go South onto Route 11 South have to be aware that the truck might be to your right or left as they near the Pilot station .Because of the volume of trucks entering and exiting the station, cars trying to turn left from the station are placed in a dangerous situation. The parking lot is barely navigable due to the minimal space allocated for cars and gas pumps.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Travelling on 81 in either direction: The left lanes traveling North or South are very often occupied by semis travelling 65 or less, struggling uphill and often with one semi parallel to it, therefore not allowing cars to pass. I believe that most of the drivers of semis know which area on 81 is uphill or downhill. They need to move into the right lane when they approach the uphill areas. Other drivers become frustrated as the left lane becomes blocked by the semis. Cars often crowd the trucks or other cars in an effort to maintain a speed of at least 70 mph. Drivers of cars often move from the right lane into the left lane to get in front of a slow moving semi. Speeds of 80 m.p.h and higher are not unusual in the left lane when a car can get out of the thick line of traffic the semis create. The trucks seem to boldly ignore the signs that say, “Slower vehicles in right lane” or wording similar
to that.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Route 42 in the EMU area has become much more congested which I believe is related to the problems on Rt. 81. I choose to drive on Rt.42 instead of the dangerous congestion on Route 81.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Other than VDOT, who else helps determine necessary changes for the traffic problems in the city? Does the City Planning office help solve traffic problems? Does the City Council have input? Yes, it will be a very long frustrating process to improve Route 81 and other problem areas in Harrisonburg but it has to happen sooner or more accidents will occur. How many accidents and deaths have occurred recently and what about the lost revenue for all drivers who are unable to reach jobs or other important obligations?

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Other questions that I have about city zoning or traffic are:
What role does the Harrisonburg City Council play in the selection and approval of locations for new businesses or JMU apartment complexes in Harrisonburg? Is it only my opinion that Port Republic Road has become a continuous row of JMU student apartments? It doesn’t appear that the City Council and the Planning Commission have any misgivings about extended rows of student housing. I haven’t seen roads in or around college campuses that allow that many student apartments or complexes in such high density. Those housing situations are creating another city within Harrisonburg. Is that the choice City Council and the Planning Commission made? Having known students in some of those complexes I know that their parties are mostly unchecked. Perhaps that is because of the sheer numbers of apartments.

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Pat Murphy 20 days ago

Another question is this: Do the City Council and the Planning Commission meet with VDOT on a regular basis to discuss traffic problems in Harrisonburg? If not, why? All parties need to share plans to improve or correct traffic problems in Harrisonburg.

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