3/1/2011: Eagle Village’s Phase 2 advances

Plans are moving forward on a new road to connect Eagle Village and Mary Washington Hospital.

The University of Mary Washington Foundation and hospital have signed a memorandum of understanding to partner on a short connector road behind Eagle Village. They hope to have one built and open by early 2012.

Plans call for the road entering Eagle Village from U.S. 1 to be extended between the hospital and shopping center. The road would go between Snowden at Fredericksburg, a psychiatric hospital, and Kids’ Station, a day care center, and connect with Sam Perry Boulevard.

The UMW Foundation’s Jeff Rountree said the road would run along the flattest available area to lower costs. The UMW Foundation and hospital would maintain it.

The hospital and UMW Foundation also might partner on a 80-to-100-bed hotel at Eagle Village. It would be built between the Giant store and the planned new road, with parking either behind the site or in the parking garage at Eagle Village. The existing retail space in that area would be torn down, and the one business that remains (Cash Advance) would be moved to another space at Eagle Village.

The hospital has long wanted a hotel in that area that could be used by relatives of long-term patients, Rountree said. The hotel could also be used by visiting UMW parents, and it would be open to the public.

Rountree and other officials with the city and UMW briefed businesses located along the U.S. 1 corridor on those plans during a lunch meeting today at the Jepson Alumni Executive Center. Among the other items discussed were:

UMW wants to build a pedestrian walk over William Street to connect to its apartments there. The connection likely wouldn’t be as ornate as the bridge over U.S. 1, said Rick Pearce, UMW’s acting vice president for administration and finance. UMW also plans to build more parking and academic space and renovate its residence halls and athletic complexes. It also is focused on a new student center.

The Home Team Grill could open this weekend at Eagle Village, and Babaganoush hopes to open in mid-April. The UMW Foundation is in discussions to bring a Thai, pizza and burger restaurant to some of the remaining new retail space at Eagle Village.

Gov. Bob McDonnell’s transportation plan set aside $35 million for the Fall Hill Avenue improvement project, said Fredericksburg Planning Director Ray Ocel. Plans call for Fall Hill being connected to Mary Washington Boulevard, and for the remaining part of Fall Hill to U.S. 1 being used primarily for local traffic. The project could also involve a second bridge being built over Interstate 95 as part of Fall Hill’s widening. Eventually another road could be built between State Route 3 and Fall Hill Avenue, opening up development back there. It will be a years-long project.

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