By Matt de Simone
Fincastle Town Council held the monthly meeting last Thursday at the Fincastle Volunteer Fire Department Training Room.
Councilman John Thomas spoke about requests he’s currently working on regarding the speed limit signs within town limits. None of the requests have been presented to Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) formally. Thomas noted these are the “beginning stages” before any direct contact with the department.
Citizen comments from the June meeting brought forth concerns about loud noises caused by jake brakes on 18-wheelers in the early mornings. Other comments from council were about the overall speed of vehicles traveling on Route 220 within town limits. Thomas mentioned last month about putting together requests to avoid further disruptions, which he presented to council last week.
The proposed request will ask for the 45 MPH signs to be moved up to the town limits sign as opposed to their current positions north and southbound. Thomas stated that this request could “enhance the sight distance” for the current speed limit signs.
“It would be ideal to move 45 MPH signs to the intersection of Route 220 north and Brughs Mill Road,” Thomas said in his list of requests. “This would reduce noise from trucks entering Fincastle. There is a high volume of traffic in this area with Fincastle Baptist Church, Attic Productions, and The Church of Transfiguration.”
Additionally, Thomas proposed to request a “No Thru Trucks” sign on Main Street in Fincastle with box truck deliveries being the exception. He mentioned that Poor Farm Road could be used as an alternate route for those deliveries with an additional request for similar signage on Church and Herndon Streets.
Thomas mentioned that he spoke with Sheriff Matt Ward about his requests and that the sheriff was “all for” these proposed requests.
Mayor Mary Bess Smith and Thomas noted that they would like for Del. Terry Austin, Fincastle Supervisor Dr. Richard Bailey, and the town residents on board with these proposed requests.
Councilman Ed Bordett gave an update about Big Spring Park. The town is hopeful for a grand opening celebration for the park once some finishing touches are completed. Bordett mentioned a local Eagle Scout is working on improving the park’s kiosk displaying information about the park. He said that the park’s “wildlife is active” with frogs and turtles being recently spotted habituating the area and that the town is working on getting signage for the upcoming pollinator garden featured in the park.
Botetourt County Public Schools requested the addition of a white board to the outdoor classroom. Council agreed that an enclosure of some sort will be needed if the classroom were to feature a white board.
Smith added that Councilman Bill Gaul is making efforts to get estimates for the park’s aerator and electrical work still needed that includes some trenching and adding an additional electrical box for outlets.
Fincastle’s new Town Clerk Morgan Keith was introduced by Town Council. The mayor noted that Keith’s already enjoying her new position.
For more information on the Town of Fincastle, visit the town’s newly refurbished website at townoffincastle.org.