Hillsboro area residents will gather at the Old Stone School on Saturday morning for the town’s annual look back and look ahead program.
Following a 9 a.m. community breakfast, Mayor Roger Vance will deliver his “State of The Gap” presentation at 10 a.m. This year’s event will provide area residents with information about some of the most impactful construction projects in the town’s 260-year history—all set to begin in the next six months.
“As the historic hub of the northwest quadrant of Loudoun and a gateway bisected by a critical artery, what happens in Hillsboro is felt far beyond its borders,” said Hillsboro Mayor Roger L. Vance. “To reflect that fact and to welcome all of our neighbors, we are calling this event the State of “The Gap”—which was what the area was referred to prior to becoming Hillsboro.”
Vance noted that last year’s event included the ribbon cutting for the new Town boundaries, and that the subsequent 12 months saw “an avalanche” of significant developments that have queued up what will be an unprecedented year for the Town. “2017 was a year that saw an amazing convergence of more than a decade of work and planning by the Town Council covering multiple fronts. And now, all of the talk, all of the planning, becomes tangible, on-the-ground reality beginning in 2018,” Vance said.
Despite the long odds facing a tiny, volunteer-run town, Vance said, Hillsboro is managing a major highway and infrastructure project—inside a significant historic district posing exceptional engineering challenges—that has required an unprecedented level of cooperation across Federal, state, county and local jurisdictions, leaders and agencies.
“This will be a showcase project on many levels,” Vance said, “including its organic citizen involvement, context-sensitive engineering and design, innovative construction methods, transformative congestion and traffic-calming solutions. And, perhaps most impressive of all, it will be an inspiring example of good governance and leadership where common sense overcomes bureaucratic roadblocks, producing high-quality results everyone will be proud of—while saving several millions in cost savings.”
Town Council member Amy Marasco said 2017 was largely a year of “proofs of concepts” that saw the inauguration of several special events designed to support sustainability of the Town’s historic Old Stone School. “The heart of Hillsboro got an infusion of energy driven by a growing group of incredibly creative, dedicated and tireless volunteers from across the greater Hillsboro area.” Marasco cited the 12-concert series Music Under the Stars in The Gap, the day-long Independence Day the Hillsboro Way, Halloween’s Boo in The Gap and the Eat, Drink & be Literary! Constitution Series as key successes that attracted tens of thousands and generated significant revenues for the Old Stone School.
“We will be unveiling our 2018 schedule of events soon, including the new Garden, Porches and Backyards spring tour that will become an annual Hillsboro event,” Marasco said.
Mayor Vance said the State of The Gap will include a concise review of the developments of 2017—including the new drinking water and wastewater system plans, grant requests for full funding of the Traffic-Calming project, official request for a unique area ZIP Code, Old Stone School events and capital improvements and more. Likewise, looking ahead, the pending infrastructure project plans, including tentative construction schedules and traffic management plans will be reviewed as will the ZIP Code status and proposed capital improvements to the Old Stone School.
Vance added that this year’s Independence Day the Hillsboro Way, Sunday, July 1, will not only “be the best party and fireworks around,” it will also be the day for the official groundbreaking for the Hillsboro Traffic-Calming and Infrastructure project. “It will be,” Vance said, “a truly historic day for The Gap.”