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Virginia CZM Program: 2015 Coastal Grant Project Description and Final Summary

Project Task Number:



Northern Neck Planning District Commission

Project Title:

Northern Neck Planning District Commission Technical Assistance

Project Description:

The NNPDC FY15 environmental work program will consist of eight work tasks:

1) NNPDC staff will provide coastal management support to local governments, planning commissions, local planning staff, as well as the Northern Neck Land Conservancy. NNPDC staff will provide GIS analysis of land development proposals, land conversion and land use plans as well as maps of wetlands, aerial photographs, elevation and/or topographic features.

2) NNPDC staff will support local planning, staff education, training and coordination through quarterly Coastal Managers (Land Use Administrators) Meetings and four local government training sessions. Four training sessions for local county staff will be targeted to assist localities in better managing coastal resources and improving water quality, and may be conducted by Federal, State or Not for Profit entities.

3) NNPDC staff will work with Lancaster County to update, print and deliver full size hard copy individual tax zoning maps of Lancaster County. Lancaster County has a digital county zoning map and land use staff would like to have an up-to-date printed set of individual tax map panel zoning maps, a total of 41 in all. These printed maps will be used by the Planning and Land Use Department. 

4) NNPDC staff will assist Northumberland County by downloading and assembling 2013 FEMA LIDAR elevation image tiles for inclusion into the county's Geographic Information System. NNPDC will create a ready to use ArcMap project file that will be installed on Northumberland County's networked GIS for use by the Land Use office staff.

5) The NNPDC will produce two additional water trail maps for Northumberland County, which will bring the total number of trails in Northumberland to four. The location of these trails in the county has not yet been determined, but county personnel will decide which creeks or rivers to be designated as water trails. As the case with the previously created NNK water trails, the water trails will utilize existing public water access launch sites for ingress and egress, and the water trail maps and guide will be available for download on the Northern Neck Tourism website,

6) Richmond County will coordinate with NNPDC staff to update the county's zoning changes to the digital zoning map GIS layer. The digital zoning map was last updated in 2009 and the county would like to post the zoning layer online for the public to use, thus the need to update the digital zoning. All zoning changes that have occurred since 2009 will be added to the existing digital zoning map.  Richmond County would also like the NNPDC to create a conditional zoning map index that consists of a GIS layer of all the conditionally zoned tax parcels in the county, which would include all conditional zoning changes the Board of Supervisors has made since 1995.

7) Westmoreland County requested ArcMap GIS training for land use staff. NNPDC staff will compile two GIS training sessions for Westmoreland County Land Use Administration staff. The first GIS training will teach county staff how to manipulate, display, symbolize and create maps using ArcMap GIS software. The second training session will be held several months later, and will spend one half of the time reinforcing the map creation skills from the first training, and present instruction on more complex operations such as geoprocessing (clip, intersect, merge) and GIS file management.

8) NNPDC staff will create a report that highlight the benefits that were accrued during the grant period based on previous VACZM Grants.

Federal Funding:


Project Contact:

Stuart McKenzie; 804.333.1900 x25;

Project Status:

10/1/15 - 9/30/16; Project Completed

Final Product:

NNPDC Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program Technical Assistance Grant FY 15, Task 45 Final Report (PDF)

Project Summary:

NNPDC staff provided coastal management support to local governments, planning commissions, local planning staff, Northern Neck Land Conservancy and the Northern Neck Master Gardeners Shoreline Evaluation Program through environmental mapping services, environmental assessment review, intergovernmental review and GIS analysis to assess coastal issues. Maps were created for the Towns of Montross and Warsaw, Westmoreland County, the Northern Neck Land Conservancy, the Friends of the Rappahannock and the Northern Neck Master Gardeners Shoreline Evaluation Program.  NNPDC staff held four local planning, training and coordination events that focused on coastal community resiliency, coastal hazard mitigation, coastal resource management and water quality.  Coordination and training events were attended by various stakeholders including local planning and land use staff, regional planning staff and were conducted by Federal, State and Not for Profit entities.  NNPDC staff assisted Lancaster County Planning and Land Use staff in updating, printing and delivering full size hard copy individual zoning tax maps.  Work included updating the digital zoning GIS map layer and the creation of 41 individual zoning tax maps with appropriate symbolization in physical format pursuant to the Code of Virginia and for use in identifying specific parcels.  NNPDC staff assisted Northumberland County Planning and Land Use staff with a GIS enhancement involving LIDAR Data for the County.  Work included obtaining FEMA LIDAR data, processing that data into a usable elevation layer, creating a digital ArcGIS LIDAR map project file and the upload of those files to the County’s GIS Network for use by the Land Use staff to assist with future analysis and projects.  NNPDC staff continued work on a comprehensive water trail network within the Northern Neck region by creating two additional water trails in Northumberland County, which previously had no official water trails.  A water trail was created along the Lower Coan River, in the area of Lewisetta, near its confluence with the Potomac River.  The Lower Coan River Water Trail traverses an historic area of Northumberland County featuring several steamboat landings, aquaculture, a marina and connects to the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail.  Another water trail was created along the Upper Great Wicomico River, in the area of Heathsville, near the Bush Mill Stream Natural Area Preserve.  The Upper Great Wicomico River Water Trail traverses an area of the Great Wicomico River between the Bush Mill Stream Natural Area and Coopers Landing, thus anchoring the Trail with the beauty of natural areas harking back to pre-settlement times.  NNPDC staff assisted Richmond County Planning and Land Use staff with a digital zoning map revision and a digital conditional zoning index map layer.  Work involved updating the GIS zoning map layer to include all zoning changes having occurred since 2009 and the creation of a GIS conditional zoning index map layer symbolizing all conditionally zoned tax parcels pursuant to the Code of Virginia and for use in future planning and zoning analysis.  NNPDC staff assisted Westmoreland County Planning and Land Use staff in the planning and implementation of a GIS training curriculum and training schedule.  Work included surveying County Administration staff regarding GIS knowledge and proficiency, procuring professional training services and developing a curriculum based on County needs.  A training schedule created provides multiple training sessions to address the wide-ranging and specific GIS needs of County staff.  NNPDC staff tracked measurable benefits accrued from previous grant products that have served as a foundation for additional projects.  Those benefits stem from the creation of a Google Map interactive website with all the region’s water trails which are available for download or reference through the Northern Neck Tourism Website at  and have resulted in a recently published article in River Views magazine, “Northern Neck Water Trails”.

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

A more detailed Scope of Work for this project is available. Please direct your request for a copy to


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

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