The Reams Road Study follows the County’s Roadway Conceptual Analysis, or RCA, process. This process confirms the need for transportation improvements, determines the most suitable improvements for a given setting, assesses the potential impacts of such improvements on the community and the environment, and develops cost estimates. The completion of this process guides future project phases (design, right-of-way acquisition, if needed, and construction), which must be completed before a project is in place.
Here is a brief description of the key steps that will be used for the Reams Road Study.
Before improvement alternatives can be developed, the study team needs to understand the existing conditions of the area as well as anticipated future changes, e.g. in development activity and transportation plans. Information is being collected from existing sources and through field reviews, which includes: existing roadway characteristics; traffic and crash data; future transportation plans; existing and future land uses; environmental features; wildlife corridors; drainage patterns; cultural resources; and potential contamination sites. The collected information provides guidance in determining the best transportation improvement options for the Reams Road corridor.
Following the completion of the data collection and analysis, a review of the Reams Road corridor will be completed to assess travel patterns, existing and projected travel demand, the presence of environmentally sensitive areas and ways to improve mobility in the Reams Road area. This analysis will be documented in a Corridor Analysis Technical Memorandum.
This step involves the identification of up to three (3) transportation improvement alternatives, including typical sections, that could be applied to the Reams Road area. Each alternative will be evaluated based on impacts to the human environment (neighborhoods, businesses, community assets, historic resources), the natural environment (wetlands and habitat for threatened or endangered species, drainage), the physical environment (access management, right-of-way, travel patterns, potential contamination sites), and costs.
The preferred transportation improvement for the Reams Road area will be based on the technical evaluations and public input of all the alternatives studied. Once a preferred alternative is selected, it will then be further evaluated and refined in more detail. These refinements may include a more detailed estimate of right-of-way limits, and updated construction and right-of-way cost estimates costs. The results were shared at a public community meeting that was held on Wednesday, December 13, 2017.
A key component of this study is the open and transparent exchange of information and feedback from stakeholders and the general public. Throughout the study, public feedback will be collected and reviewed. Individuals can remain informed about the study’s progress through this website, newsletters, and public meetings. After the second public meeting, the study recommendations were presented to the Orange County Local Planning Agency (LPA). The study concluded with the Orange County Board of County Commissioners (BCC) taking action on the study recommendations at the BCC Public Hearing. The Preferred Alignment Alternative was approved by the BCC and the proposed improvements will move forward into the design phase, once funding is available.