River Street Retaining Wall “Moving”…Shhhh.. Noise Back on Trustee Agenda

Coupla’ loose ends from this week’s Woodstock Village Trustees meeting…

Trustees are moving forward with plan to lower the road near the Elm Street Bridge end of River Street and construct a new retaining wall. At Tuesday’s meeting they approved an engineering outline presented by Mike Willis who has been retained to address the failing bank near the bridge.

Much, much discussion following the engineering portion of the presentation about concrete overlays, aesthetics and, at the request of property owners Gerry and Emily Jones, re-planting of trees, vines and greenery. The Jones’, who attended Tuesday’s meeting,  say they have been fully informed and involved in the process, as the intended widening of the road and construction work will “dig” into their property by at least four feet if not more.  This is apparently a case of road maintenance right-of-way into their land rather than a case of eminent domain.  The Jones did ask for — and terms of the contract will include —  pre- and post-construction surveys of the grounds’ movement around their home out of their concerns about possibly disturbing structural damage due to construction vibration. They also requested adequate funding to restore landscaping to their bank which now has trees which will have to be taken down.

The project, which has now been approved to go out to bid — and is to be 90 % funded by a State of Vermont grant —  is expected to begin early this spring but finished before the summer tourist season — hopefully completed by the end of May, if not before.  The Trustees still have to select and approve on a bidder for the project.

The project will mean that end of River Street where it intersects Elm Street  near the bridge will be closed for a certain period of time with access to remain open at the Covered Bridge.

Willis said the pilings, concrete and materials planted firmly into rock ledge should be able to safely handle the downhill load and the road for at least 75 years if not more. It appears, at this point, that the uphill area belonging to the National Park Service, a bank filled with power lines, cables and so forth, is not to involved in the project.  Town Manager Phil Swanson and Willis say, and Trustees agree, that due to current erosion issues and the potential for more, this is a “must-do” project.

Speaking of drilling into rock and so forth…which is likely to give one a big headache, a last-minute entry at the end of the Trustees meeting as they neared adjournment:

Trustee Chris Miller, quietly presented to other Trustees a little bit of homework he’s been working on. We applaud him for this. It is his own draft ideas and revisions to our Village Noise Ordinance, taking into consideration possible changes in time of day that lawn equipment may be run and also taking into account the decibel level of various forms of “noise.’  Miller said his ideas are very preliminary  and he was hesitant to share them with Early Bird (they are nonetheless public record and may be viewed as part of meeting minutes at the Town Hall — We did take a cursory look/see).

As a result of Miller bringing this topic back to the front burner, Trustees agreed to once again take up “Noise” or “Quiet” at their next meeting, which is in March, just before the annual Village Meeting.

One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Sue Bertram Leduc on February 15, 2013 at 06:16

    I believe it was my great-grandfather, Paige, who built the existing wall.


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