By Carol Vaughn —
The Chincoteague Town Council at a meeting Thursday, Nov. 18, discussed paving roads in the Ocean Breeze development.
The state highway department has not yet approved including 10 roads in the development, at the southern end of Chincoteague, in its urban maintenance program. Approval would allow funds from the program to be used to pave the roads.
At this point, the town’s request would not be approved, if it is, until June 2022, according to Town Manager Mike Tolbert.
Of the 10 roads, the priority is to pave Ridge Road as it extends through the development from Beebe Ranch to South Main Street at Capt. Bob’s Marina, according to a memorandum to the council from Tolbert.
The Public Works Committee at a meeting Nov. 2 recommended using town money to repair and pave that portion of road prior to highway department approval, at a projected cost of $78,629. The committee asked Tolbert to develop a plan to include the cost in the current year’s budget.
Tolbert recommended funding the project from the general fund using additional revenue that has come in from meals and transient occupancy taxes.
Council member Denise Bowden made the motion to use town money to repair and pave the road, saying, “It needs to be done.”
The measure passed unanimously.
The town will let Ocean Breeze residents know about the plans to improve the roads there, likely by letter, signs in the construction area, and via social media.
“I would like to see that done. Communication with the residents down there is key to making this all work,” Bowden said.
The town still intends to include Ridge Road extended, along with the other nine named roads, in its request to VDOT to add the Ocean Breeze roads to it urban inventory, according to Tolbert.
The Town Council voted in May 2021 to accept ownership of the 10 roads and to request VDOT to add them to its inventory.
VDOT denied the request for this year but the town is preparing to resubmit the application for consideration for the Fiscal Year 2023 grant.