The Town of Hillsboro started its year off with a great deal of momentum, having officially expanded its town limits by 116 acres on Jan. 1.
After shedding its status of one of Virginia’s tiniest towns, Hillsboro’s leaders pushed forward with some big initiatives—setting a start date for its traffic calming and pedestrian safety project and submitting an application to reclaim its ZIP code.
“2017 was a pretty eventful year for the town,” said Mayor Roger Vance. “It was significant for us for a variety of reasons.”
Midway through the year, the town hired an engineering firm to handle the design of the traffic calming and pedestrian safety project, which Vance said has been in the plans for 10 years and ready to go for five. The project will install sidewalks on each side of the road, three or four raised crosswalks and about 60 on-street parking bays in town. Two roundabouts at the eastern and western edges of town on Rt. 9 will also eventually be built.
As of November, federal, state and local governments had provided $10 million for the in-town portion of the project. On Dec. 15, the town submitted an application to the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority in hopes of getting an additional $12 million for the roundabouts.
Vance said if the project gets the funding and both parts of the project are worked on simultaneously, it should be completed in two years and save the town about $5 million. He said the town plans to find a contractor to do the work in the spring.
Vance is hopeful the project will start on July 1, the same day he expects the town to get its own ZIP code, 20133.
Exactly a month prior to submitting its application to NVTA, the town submitted a separate application to USPS to regain its own ZIP code, which it lost in 2004. It has shared a 20132 ZIP code with Purcellville ever since, something Vance said has confused many residents, businesses, and tourists.
“It’s probably been the number one concern people raise to me all the time,” he said. “Its not just an identity issue, there are real consequences.”