In 2006, VDOT
conducted a traffic engineering investigation on Baldwin
Street (Route 673) at the request of citizens and the
Fauquier County Transportation Committee. Based on that
study, the speed limit on Baldwin Street from Grays Mill
Road (Route 674) to the dead end was posted at 25 miles per
hour, with the remainder of Baldwin Street (between U.S.
Route 15/29 and Grays Mill Road) posted at 40 miles per
hour. In 2008, due to continuing safety concerns, citizens
from Baldwin Street asked the Transportation Committee to
request that VDOT reduce the speed limit on all portions of
Baldwin Street to 25 miles per hour. VDOT reviewed the data
from 2006, and concluded that the speeds were appropriately
posted and no changes were warranted.
Since that time,
Transportation Committee Members have been studying sections
of the Code of Virginia dealing with speed limits in
Residence and Business Districts (§46.2-874), and the
definitions of “Business District” and “Residence District”
contained in §46.2-100.
maximum speed shall be 25 miles per hour on highways in
business or residence districts, except on interstate or
other limited access highways with divided roadways or
non-limited access highways having four or more lanes and
all state primary highways.
"Residence district" means the territory contiguous to a
highway, not comprising a business district, where 75
percent or more of the property abutting such highway, on
either side of the highway, for a distance of 300 feet or
more along the highway consists of land improved for
dwelling purposes, or is occupied by dwellings, or consists
of land or buildings in use for business purposes, or
consists of territory zoned residential or territory in
residential subdivisions created under Chapter 22 (§15.2-2200
et seq.) of Title 15.2.
"Business district" means the territory contiguous to a
highway where 75 percent or more of the property contiguous
to a highway, on either side of the highway, for a distance
of 300 feet or more along the highway, is occupied by land
and buildings actually in use for business purposes.
meeting on June 24, 2009, the Transportation Committee
requested that VDOT determine whether Baldwin Street
(between U.S. Route 15/29 and Grays Mill Road) and Grays
Mill Road qualify as “Residence Districts” per the Code of
Virginia §46.2-874. VDOT determined that Baldwin Street
between U.S. Route 15/29 and Grays Mill Road, and Grays Mill
Road from Baldwin Street for 1.15 miles northeast qualify as
“Residence Districts” per §46.2-874 of the Code of Virginia.
(Attachments 1 and 2). Mr. J. David Cubbage, VDOT Warrenton
Residency Administrator, indicated that these sections of
the Code of Virginia supersede the traffic engineering
investigations typically performed by VDOT. Mr. Cubbage
also indicated that the Board of Supervisors must officially
request that VDOT post a speed limit of 25 miles per hour
based on the Residence District criteria.
At its meeting
on October 28, 2009, the Transportation Committee voted 4-0,
(with Member R. Holder Trumbo, Jr., abstaining) to recommend
to the Board of Supervisors that the speed limit on the
above mentioned portion of Baldwin Street be reduced from 40
miles per hour to 25 miles per hour and that the speed limit
on the above mentioned portion of Grays Mill Road be reduced
from 35 miles per hour to 25 miles per hour, in the interest
of public safety and welfare and consistent with the Code of