Is On Track for New Future
Groups Meet To Discuss Preservation
The long battle to save historic Clarkton Bridge and convert
it to a pivotal piece in two counties' parks and tourism
efforts appears to be on track.
The bridge spans the Staunton River and links Halifax and
APVA Preservation Virginia previously agreed to accept title
to the bridge, but with conditions.
A new owner will ultimately take possession from the APVA.
On Wednesday, representatives from the Virginia Department
of Transportation, the Clarkton Bridge Alliance, members
of the Charlotte and Halifax County Boards of Supervisors
and Russell Slayton, county attorney, met in Farmville to
discuss preservation issues.
"We discussed where we are and what will be the next
steps for the conservation effort," VDOT Resident Engineer
Joe Barkley II said yesterday.
Since both Halifax and Charlotte supervisors previously
passed resolutions of their intent to discontinue a short
section of Route 620 that includes the bridge, Barkley said
his office is taking public comment.
The discontinuance phase for public involvement extends
through March 31.
However, Route 620 in Charlotte County will remain open
to provide access to the boat landing on the Staunton River
at Clarkton Bridge, a Clarkton Bridge Alliance spokesman
The VDOT resident engineer said that he would make a report
to supervisors in Charlotte and Halifax counties during
their April meeting regarding the road issue.
To date, Barkley said that he has received only one comment,
and that one favored discontinuance.
"So, I think we are making progress, and Ms. (P.K.)
Pettus will contact Secretary of Transportation Clement
informing him of the status," added Barkley.
Pettus, a Keysville resident, has been a driving force in
organizing the Clarkton Bridge Alliance to save the bridge.
"The Clarkton Bridge Alliance is delighted the board
of directors of APVA Preservation Virginia has agreed to
take ownership of the bridge if certain conditions can be
met," Pettus said Thursday.
"We are working, the Clarkton Bridge Alliance and VDOT,
in cooperation with both counties to meet these conditions.
"There is still much work to be done, but we are making
steady progress," added Pettus.
"We will continue to move forward with a few little
unanswered questions, and then the Boards will deliberate
after the public involvement phase (on Route 620),"
said the VDOT resident engineer.
Clarkton Bridge has recently been nominated as a stop for
the Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail.
Clean-Up -- Local Clarkton Bridge Preservation advocates recently organized a clean-up crew to pick up trash and debris in order to assist VDOT and adjacent property owners. The Clarkton Bridge Alliance welcomes local volunteers interested in saving the historic truss bridge to pitch in with the continuing clean-up effort.