Albemarle Co. Supervisors Discuss Red Light Cameras, Court System

March 5, 2014

The Albemarle County Board of Supervisors met Wednesday morning to discuss putting up more red light cameras, and the possibility of major renovations to Court Square.

Albemarle Co. Police, along with a representative of the IIHS, spoke in front of the board this morning. They gave supervisors an update on the red light cameras at Route 29 and Rio Road, and voiced their support for the expansion of the project.

Since the PhotoSafe program was installed, the number of crashes due to a driver running a red light at Rt. 29 and Rio Rd. has dropped by 50 percent. Also, the number of summons has dropped 24 percent.

Because of the effectiveness of those red light cameras, the police would like to see more installed elsewhere in the county, including Rt. 29 and Hydraulic Rd.

Albemarle Co. Police Colonel Steve Sellers also addressed the cameras that were to be placed at the intersection of Route 250 and Route 20 on Pantops, but has been delayed.

"I think it’s an appropriate location for photo enforcement, but I don't think it's appropriate at this moment,” said Col. Sellers. “With all the studies going on in that intersection with all the improvements and the community issues surrounding that, I don't think it's fair"

The board agreed, saying given the data they would support looking into placing future red light cameras at other major intersections.

Also on the board's agenda was an update on the Albemarle Co. court system.

A study determined the current general district and circuit courts did not meet the county’s needs. The board looked at several options, such as renovating and expanding, however parking was a major concern. Building an entirely new court system in a more rural area was also suggested, though that could cost up to $52 million.

Supervisors want to meet with judges, commonwealth’s attorneys and member of the Charlottesville City Council to see where they stand.

One other possibility is using the levy building which is shared with the city and make a combined general court house for both localities. They hope to meet next month for further discussion.

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