Atlee Road extension nears reality

MECHANICSVILLE, VA (WWBT) - A major road project in Mechanicsville is inching closer to reality.

Hanover officials will vote tomorrow night whether to approve a million dollars in funding to extend Atlee Road from the Rutland Shopping Center to Atlee Station Road.

The Rutland area in Mechanicsville is one of the fastest growing parts of Hanover County.

Atlee Road would only be extended about half a mile - but that extra segment of roadway could make a big difference.

Mike Cohan opened up Marty's Grill just off Atlee Road a little over a year ago. He says the extension would be great for business.

"With that extension they're looking to do it'll drive more traffic in which will bring more people through," he said. "We won't look at it as a shortcut to 301, it'll be a way to bring more traffic to the shopping center."

As is the case with many paving projects, some homes will be affected. The Atlee Road extension will come right through several homes, and not surprisingly, that makes some of the neighbors here a little nervous.

Heather Hinceman lives in this home off Cool Springs and says this extension will force her to find a new place to live.

"I definitely don't want to be here when the road comes through with my daughter and my dog," Hinceman said. "I don't want that to be her front yard."

Hanover officials will decide Wednesday night whether to shell out a million dollars toward the project, hoping the state will match them dollar for dollar..

Joe Vidunas is a traffic engineer for Hanover County.

He says this $11 million project will help the county keep up with the added traffic in the area.

"We're getting ahead of the development curve here if you will in anticipation of the growth that is happening," he said.  "We're able to proceed with what we think will be an important transportation improvement."

Don't expect to see any heavy equipment brought in to start construction anytime soon - engineers say the earliest construction on the new extension could start would be in 2013.

Hanover County already has nearly $2.5 million set aside for the project.

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