Virginia CZM Program: 2011 Coastal Grant Project Description and Final Summary

Project Task:VA CZM logo

92

Grantee:

Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Project Title:

Developing a Working Waterfronts Plan for Virginia's Coastal Zone

Project Description as Proposed:

Coastal areas are experiencing dramatically increased demand for residential development. This demand often results in the need for services and resources that are not compatible with the nature and character of the community that attracted the development in the first place. As a result, historic industries that support the functionality of many waterfront communities become disadvantaged by impacts of new development. Localities with working waterfronts often lack sufficient information and/or organizational capacity to effectively respond to the changes presented by increased growth and development. The proposed project will establish a coastal zone-wide Working Waterfronts plan for Virginia that will serve to guide communities in protecting, restoring and enhancing their water-dependent commercial and recreational activities. The strategy to develop this program change is designed to help communities with existing water-dependent commercial infrastructure understand the long-term costs associated with the loss of working waterfronts, develop new policy tools to help them manage the increasing growth pressures, and build capacity to develop working waterfronts as a thriving component of local economic development.  Four coastal Planning District Commissions (PDCs) with significant working waterfront infrastructure will be involved in implementing this project: Accomack-Northampton, Hampton Roads PDC, Middle Peninsula PDC and Northern Neck PDC.  Project management and coordination from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science/Virginia Sea Grant Marine Extension Program allows for expertise in comparative economic analyses to identify the long-term economic impacts of incoming development versus the maintenance and enhancement of existing water dependent commercial activities. This first step will lay the foundation for development of a working waterfront plan for Virginia’s Coastal Zone, to guide communities in decision making and policy development to retain the water-driven elements of their economic structure and cultural heritage.Federal Funding:

$50,000

Project Contact:

Tom Murray, 804.684.7190; tjm@vims.edu

Project Status:

10/1/2011 - 9/30/2012; Project Completed

Final Product Received:

A Working Waterfronts Plan for Virginia Year 1 - Working Waterfront Infrastructure Inventory (pdf)

Project Summary Provided by Grantee:

This project coordinated and supported 4 local Planning District Commissions (PDC) to develop benchmark information on the numbers, locations and characteristics of working waterfronts in their respective counties.  At the outset each PDC embarked on developing a consensus definition for its region in collaboration with its member county governments and stakeholders.     The following definitions adopted by the respective regions provided the target infrastructure for the complete inventory:   

Hampton Roads, Virginia, working waterfronts are areas or structures on, over, or adjacent to navigable bodies of water that provide access to the water and are used for water-dependent commercial, industrial, or government activities, including commercial fishing, recreational fishing, tourism, aquaculture, boat and ship building, boat and ship repair, boat and ship services, seafood processing, seafood sales, transportation, shipping, marine construction, and military activities.

Northern Neck of Virginia, the term `working waterfront' means real property (including support structures over water and other facilities) that provides access to coastal waters to persons engaged in commercial fishing, recreational fishing businesses, boatbuilding, aquaculture, or other water-dependent, coastal-related business and is used for, or that supports, commercial fishing, recreational fishing businesses, boatbuilding, aquaculture, or other water-dependent, coastal related business.

Middle Peninsula of Virginia, the term `working waterfront' means real property (including support structures over water and other facilities) that provides access to coastal waters to persons engaged in commercial fishing, recreational fishing businesses, boatbuilding, aquaculture, or other water-dependent, coastal-related business and is used for, or that supports, commercial fishing, recreational fishing businesses, boatbuilding, aquaculture, or other water-dependent, coastal-related business.

Accomack and Northampton Counties of Virginia, the term `working waterfront' means real property (including support structures over and adjacent to the water or inland property engaged in significant water-related activities) that provides access to coastal waters or that supports commercial fishing; recreational fishing businesses; aquaculture; ecotourism; national defense; public safety uses; marine research; shipping and rail yards; boatbuilding; support of offshore energy production; or other commercial, recreational, and industrial business.

Over 577 discreet working waterfront locations were identified based upon the definitions adopted by each region.  Those individual sites were uniformly characterized and those details documented using standard inventory protocols.  All of the PDC inventories and definition reports are contained on an accompanying CD-ROM: “Developing a Working Waterfronts Plan for Virginias Coastal Zone. “  NOAA Grant No.  NA111NOS4190122.

Distribution of the inventory data will be accomplished in conjunction with the VCP and local PDCS. Additionally relevant regional data will be accessible by links at local public access authority websites.

Disclaimer: This project summary provides the federal dollars initially awarded to the grantee. Due to underexpenditure or reprogramming of grant funds, this figure may change. For more information on the allocation of coastal grant funds, please contact Laura McKay, Virginia Coastal Program Manager, at 804.698.4323 or email: Laura.McKay@deq.virginia.gov

A more detailed Scope of Work for this project is available. Please direct your request for a copy to Virginia.Witmer@deq.virginia.gov

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Virginia Department of
Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-4000


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