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People get early look at State Route 610 widening project

The early plans are in for the widening of Garrisonville’s State Route 610.

Work won’t start for about a year and a half, but Stafford County residents got their first chance to see preliminary details at a public hearing Tuesday evening at Anne E. Moncure Elementary School.

Route 610 is a six-lane divided highway with a concrete median from the Interstate 95 exits to Onville Road, where the widening project will start.

The estimated $13.8 million project will extend the six-lane divided highway farther west just less than a mile to Eustace Road.

Construction is slated to start in January 2016, on the heels of an intersection improvement project at Onville Road.

Stafford County is overseeing the public–private project, with contractor Branch Highways handling the design and construction.

Project Manager Alex Owsiak of the Stafford County Department of Public Works said responses at the hearing were “a mixed bag. Some people are happy.”

About a dozen residents attended the meeting, which had maps of the project plans and officials on hand to answer questions.

The consensus seemed to be that the widening is needed.

Rusty Knight and his mother, Josephine Knight, both said the project should help with traffic on the busy road, used by some 42,000 vehicles per day, according to 2012 figures.

But the Knights are concerned about a stormwater pond on more than 12 acres the family owns off of Route 610 in the work zone.

“It destroys the whole property,” because it would hamper access to the land, said Rusty Knight as he looked at an enlarged map of the project.

There is an occupied house on the property, and he said the family eventually plans to sell the land.

“I hope they’re going to look at it because it’ll cause a lot of damage,” said Josephine Knight.

Owsiak said they will examine issues with the pond.

There is another stormwater pond planned on land adjacent to the Knights’ property.

Two other properties may have to be acquired by the county for right of way. One is a private residence and the other a flower shop.

Anyone interested in commenting on the project can send them to: Alex Owsiak, Project Manager Stafford County Department of Public Works, 1300 Courthouse Road, Box 339, Stafford, VA 22555.

Comments also can be emailed to

The deadline for comments is July 18.

Scott Shenk: 540/374-5436