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    Salamander hopes to rezone roads for homes in Middleburg

    Salamander Resort and Spa hopes to privatize part of its road network as it prepares to add 49 homes to the resort in the next few years.

    The resort wants Middleburg Town Council to rezone some of its roads to become privately run by the soon-to-be homeowner's association.

    Salamander also hopes to get approval to link Middleburg's current road structure to the future home site, via entrances at Chestnut and Reed streets through a Middleburg Community Center right-of-way.

    Discussions at a Feb. 12 town council meeting and a March 23 planning commission meeting revolved around new rezoning requests and potential proffer agreements.

    The Middleburg Planning Commission was favorable of the Salamander request, on the condition that their concerns were addressed before town council went forward.

    Will Moore, Middleburg town planner and zoning administrator, said one concern from Middleburg's Planning Commission was making sure Salamander would "not gate off the private streets."

    Moore reported Salamander had no intention of restricting access to the public and the resort "verbally indicated they would amend the proffer to state that there would be no gates from Stonewall Avenue into the residential property."

    Middleburg Town Council also expressed concern over law enforcement's access to the potentially private roads.

    According to meeting minutes from the Feb. 12 town council meeting, the Middleburg Police Chief stated in December to the council, staff and planning commission, that he had some concern about the department’s ability to enforce traffic laws.

    Salamander has agreed that consent would be given to police to enforce laws on the private road network, according to Moore.

    The resort wants to control maintenance, and in some cases construction of the streets, because it believes it can do a better job than the Virginia Department of Transportation.

    Organizers want Salamander, which its owners run as a world class resort, to be able to make upgrades and address problems with roads on its own instead of waiting for VDOT to correct potholes and other improvements.

    The resort's officials also hope for "more flexibility in the design of the streets" as well.

    The matter was further discussed on March 23 as part of Middleburg's Planning Commission meeting. Town council will decide whether to approve the project in the coming months.

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