Cashiers Transportation Plan Approved
<14px>By Jessica Webb14px>
Staff Writer Cashiers Chronicle
The Jackson County Board of Commissioners approved the Cashiers Transportation Plan during its work session meeting Monday afternoon.
With the board’s approval, the plan will now be included in the Jackson County Comprehensive Transportation Plan. For inclusion on the county plan, the board held
a public hearing during the work session meeting
The Cashiers Area Chamber of Commerce sent a letter in support the plan. Signed by Ken Fernandez, Chamber board of directors president, the letter urges the board to endorse the plan.
“This collaborative strategic document outlines priority projects, in the categories of roadway, pathway and policy, designed to improve mobility and aesthetics of the Cashiers Village
Center and crossroads area,” Fernandez wrote. “With your timely support, these consensual transportation- related recommendations can be presented to the North Carolina and U.S. Departments of Transportation or funding consideration.”
The board of commissioners unanimously approved the plan, after one Cashiers resident spoke during the hearing.
Lou Blanc of Cashiers spoke about concerns he had over the sidewalk currently under construction on Frank Allen Road potentially impeding on his property. The board assured him that the plans for the sidewalk only go to the new Cashiers/Glenville Recreation Center and
would not intrude on his property.
The transportation plan focuses on three areas including roads, pathways and policy. The final plan is the product of a Mountain Landscapes Initiative Project of 2007-2008 led by the Southwestern Commission. After the MLI plan was completed, the Cashiers Village Council was formed and took up some of the recommendations of the study. A public work shop was held in the transportation plan in October 2011.
Design firm Fuss & O’Neill, of Manchester, Conn., produced the final plan.
With approval from the county, the hope is that the Cashiers Village Council can begin to seek funding for the projects in the plan from the NC DOT and other sources.
The vision in the plan is to establish roads and walking paths in the town to redevelop the character of Highways 107 and 64 to make Cashiers resemble more of a village Main Street
than a rural state highway. Recommendations in the plan include connector roads between Highways 107 and 64 in all four quadrants of the village. Frank Allen Road already serves
as a connector for one quadrant.
The plan also includes roundabouts at the four outer entrances to the community that would serve to slow traffic.
A final roundabout is also planned at the crossroads that would be larger and include welcome signage.
Sidewalks and more natural walking paths through the area are also included. Sidewalks are recommended along N.C. 107 and U.S. 64, with a top priority being to establish walking
paths to the Ingles Shopping Center.
Other natural trails area included such as connection to the Village Green trail along Frank Allen Road. “This is just a true wish list that can be added to the county’s Comprehensive Transportation Plan,” said county commissioner and Cashiers representative Mark Jones after the meeting Monday.
He said implementation of the plans would be based on funding and that it is likely that it could be 10 to 15 years before the roundabouts and other aspects of the plan become a reality.
**Article from the Cashiers Crossroads Chronicle
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