Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Richmond Riverfront Plan Progresses

~ Construction of access road, vegetation removal clearing way for memorial bridge ~

The City of Richmond announced that work is progressing on the Richmond Riverfront Plan. A top priority of the Plan is construction of the Brown’s Island Dam Walk, now known as the T. Tyler Potterfield Memorial Bridge (TTPMB).

The area is regulated by the State Department of Conservation and Resources as a Low Hazard (Special Criteria) dam, and therefore all woody vegetation within 25 feet of the structure has to be removed. Since mid-November, the city and state have been working to clear the woody vegetation and to construct an access road in order to provide contractor access to the project site for the bridge construction. 

The dam inspection report recommended removal of woody vegetation and debris in the south section of the dam and along various piers. The tree removal work meets the Low Head Dam requirements and also benefits the TTPMB project, by providing a construction entrance that can be used by the contractor and erosion and sediment controls required for the small amount of earth (460 square feet) that will be disturbed at the construction entrance.

The clearing of vegetation in this area will help prepare the area where the elevated pathway for the Potterfield Memorial Bridge will be constructed over the next year. Work on the TTPMB is expected to begin by the end of 2014, following the preparatory work.

“The work to connect the north bank of the James River to the south has been a long-time coming,” said Mayor Dwight C. Jones. “I’m so pleased to have been a part of the push for progress on the Richmond Riverfront Plan and to have been guided in this direction by champions like Tyler Potterfield. It is fitting that as we make tangible progress on these plans that we have also taken the time to recognize and memorialize the awesome contribution made by Potterfield.”

The TTPMB project has several important sustainability features, including: avoiding all impact to designated wetlands and the floodway, capturing run-off on site in bioswales, and improving water quality of run-off. More than 1,000 native ferns, shrubs, and trees will be planted as part of the project.