The district commander has received a joint application for federal and state permits as described below:
City of Virginia Beach
Attn: Mr. Jason Wilson
Department of Public Works
Municipal Building 2
2405 Courthouse Drive
Virginia Beach, Virginia 23456
WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK: The project is located along tributaries to Back Bay at the east end of Sandbridge Road in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE: The applicant proposes safety improvements to Sandbridge Road from McClanan’s Curve to about one mile east of the intersection with Sandpiper Road in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The project consists of: 1) realigning the horizontal profile, with the roadway shifted approximately 55 feet to the north of the existing roadway centerline; 2) establishing a consistent typical roadway section with 12-foot wide lanes, bike lanes and shared use paths; 3) raising the roadway for flood mitigation and to account for sea level rise; 4) replacing existing substandard culverts; 5) treating stormwater through construction of dry swales of both sides of the road; 6) relocating existing utilities; and 7) maintaining traffic flow in and out of Sandbridge by constructing a temporary road adjacent to the existing road in places where it is needed.
The purpose of the project is to improve vehicle and pedestrian safety within the existing Sandbridge Road corridor from McClanan’s Curve to about one-mile east of the intersection with Sandpiper Road in Virginia Beach.
The project would impact 9.402 acres of nontidal vegetated wetlands and 0.90 acres of nontidal non-vegetated open water ditches and drainage features. The project would also result in temporary impacts to 1.63 acres of nontidal vegetated wetlands and 0.019 acres of nontidal non-vegetated open water ditches and drainage features. The city of Virginia Beach conducted extensive coordination with federal and state agencies concerning the five alternatives reviewed, including a No-Build alternative. All alternatives, except the No-Build Alternative, would have similar wetland impacts, with the alternatives having equal or greater wetland impacts than the preferred alternative. As compensatory mitigation, the applicant is proposing to compensate for forested wetland impacts at a 2:1 ratio, scrub/shrub wetlands at a 1.5:1 ratio and emergent wetlands at a 1:1 ratio, and the applicant is proposing to mitigate for the temporary impacts at a 1:1 ratio, because the temporary wetland fill will be in place for at least a year. The applicant proposes to purchase a total of 19.952 credits from the Dover Farm Mitigation Bank, which is an established mitigation within the watershed.
In addition to the required Department of the Army permit, the applicant must obtain a Virginia Water Protection Permit/401 certification from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality assuring that applicable laws and regulations pertaining to water quality are not violated. Project drawings are attached.
AUTHORITY: Permits are required pursuant to Sections 401 and 404 of the Clean Water Act (Public Law 95-217) and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia.
FEDERAL EVALUATION OF APPLICATION: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. The decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits which reasonably may be expected from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All of the proposal's relevant factors will be considered, including conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, cultural values, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values, land use classification, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, consideration of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. The Environmental Protection Agency's "Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material" will also be applied (Section 404(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act).
The US Army Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Indian tribes; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.
Anyone may request a public hearing to consider this permit application by writing to the district commander within 30 days of the date of this notice, stating specific reasons for holding the public hearing. The district commander will then decide if a hearing should be held.
Preliminary review indicates that: (l) no environmental impact statement will be required; (2) after conducting the NAO ESA Project Review Process, we have determined there may be an effect to listed/proposed/candidate species and/or designated/proposed critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 and the Official Species List and Species Conclusion Table are attached for review and comment by Fish and Wildlife Service; and (3) no known properties eligible for inclusion or included in the National Register of Historic Places are in or near the permit area, or would likely be affected by the proposal. Additional information might change any of these findings.
For compliance with the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended for projects located in Tidewater, the applicant must certify that federally licensed or permitted activities affecting Virginia's coastal uses or resources will be conducted in a manner consistent with the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program (VCP) and obtain concurrence from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), Office of Environmental Impact Review (OEIR). We have not received a certification from the applicant prior to publication of this public notice. It is the applicant’s responsibility to submit a consistency certification to the Office of Environmental Impact Review for concurrence or objection and proof of concurrence must be submitted to the Corps prior to final permit issuance. A template federal consistency certification can be found here: http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/EnvironmentalImpactReview/FederalConsistencyReviews.aspx#cert. For more information or to obtain a list of the enforceable policies of the VCP, contact the Department of Environmental Quality, Office of Environmental Impact Review at (804) 698-4330 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
COMMENT PERIOD: Comments on this project should be made in writing, addressed to the Norfolk District, US Army Corps of Engineers (ATTN: CENAO-WR-R), 803 Front Street, Norfolk, Virginia 23510-1096, and should be received by the close of business on Dec. 14, 2015.
PRIVACY & CONFIDENTIALITY: Comments and information, including the identity of the submitter, submitted in response to this Public Notice may be disclosed, reproduced, and distributed at the discretion of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Information that is submitted in connection with this Public Notice cannot be maintained as confidential by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Submissions should not include any information that the submitter seeks to preserve as confidential.
If you have any questions about this project or the permit process, contact Melissa Nash at (757) 201-7489 or firstname.lastname@example.org.