Additional InformationAddressing Sensitive Features
Many of the environmental resources within the US 219 project area were identified and documented in the PEL study. The current NEPA project will need to evaluate options to avoid sensitive resources, and where avoidance is not possible, find ways to minimize impacts. Any adverse impacts will require consideration for mitigation measures. The following overview briefly documents some of the more sensitive features in the project area.
Environmental Features Overview
All environmental (natural, cultural and socio-economic) resources in the project area are considered equally under NEPA; however, some resources require more careful consideration due to factors such as rarity/uniqueness, extreme sensitivity to changes, etc. The project area is a mix of built-up areas (residential and commercial), agricultural and forest land, historic sites, and natural areas (the Little Meadows, east of the project area, and Savage River State Forest, south of the project area). The following sensitive features will require additional studies under NEPA, including ways to avoid or minimize impacts:
- The Tomlinson Inn and Little Meadows Historic Site and ecological site
- Archaeological resources such as Braddock’s Road
- Productive agricultural lands
- Wetlands, streams and floodplains
- Threatened and endangered species, including bats, plants and other species
- Forested areas and Forest Interior Dwelling Bird Species (FIDS)
- Potential hazardous materials
- Community facilities, such as religious facilities and gathering spots
- Residential properties, including concerns for air quality and noise impacts
Preliminary Concepts Review
Several build Concepts and a No-Build option are being evaluated. Each Build Concept includes:
- A proposed interchange at I-68, utilizing the existing Interchange as it is today, or a combination using the existing Interchange configuration and a new set of higher speed ramps or intersections just east of the existing US 219/ I-68 Interchange.
- A connection with existing Chestnut Ridge Road near Old Salisbury Road.