Author: Charlotte Matherly

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Mayor calls on community to help Open Doors; Council considers transportation changes

Mayor Deanna Reed on Tuesday expressed concerns for Open Doors, the local low-barrier homeless shelter. The organization has shifted its shelter from several locations in recent years, from churches to JMU at the start of the pandemic to the former Red Front grocery store building, then back to JMU this summer. But come Aug. 15, Open Doors will once again be in the market for space to run the shelter.

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City outlines ways for private donations to enhance parks, programs and public spaces

Harrisonburg now has an official policy to accept private donations that can help spruce up or expand public areas, parks and other projects and programs.

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City plans for reshaping roads with more bike lanes and sidewalk projects

Harrisonburg plans to apply for state grant money for seven transportation projects, including adding bike lanes on some major thoroughfares and some work on South Main Street near the new Rocktown High School that’s under construction. 

Residents want ARPA funds to help with housing, health and child care

Affordable housing, robust mental and physical health care and accessible child care for working families are Harrisonburg residents’ top three needs that could be addressed using the city’s share of American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. 

Open Doors returns to JMU for the summer but city finds a site for a permanent shelter

The city’s announcement that Harrisonburg has found a permanent site for a homeless shelter will eventually put an end to years of shifting from one temporary facility to another for Open Doors, the organization that runs the shelter. 

Road to reducing the city’s emissions starts with vehicles, according to updated environmental plan

With an initial focus on reducing pollution from transportation, city staff are preparing to invest in more electric vehicles, improve efficiency of traffic flow and plan for more sidewalks, bike trails and shared use paths. 

Council approves budget and hears concerns about financially struggling households

More than half of the children in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County live in households that struggle to make ends meet even though family members are employed, according to the local United Way’s analysis of economic data. 

Council tabs money for organizations, approves a future pay raise and opts to hand over an alley to JMU

More than 40 community organizations will receive city funds — including 11 first-time recipients — after the city council made changes Tuesday to the draft of the city’s next budget. 

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