Fishersville welcomes Lifecore Drive, new Rt. 608 bridge to fast-growing area

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Dennis Burnett bridge dedication

Dennis O. Burnett bridge dedication with local elected officials. March 13, 2015. Photo by Augusta County Economic Development staff.

Amanda Glover, Augusta County Economic Development Director, who had to twice cancel the dedication of the Dennis O. Burnett bridge due to wintry weather, noted after the March 13, 2015, dedication:

We’re gaining sunlight each day, and spring will officially be here in three days – this provides us with bright light and the promise of warmer weather. Augusta County is fortunate to have bright lights and new roads leading us into Spring 2015.

The weather finally allowed for the opening of Route 636/LifeCore Drive to the public! LifeCore Drive provides Fishersville with an added traffic corridor and connection to Augusta Health and the Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences. The road will also allow for further planned development in a growth area of Augusta County. To learn more about the project, click here.

Celebrating with a ribbon cutting on March 13, LifeCore Drive was officially opened for traffic. The celebration also included a Bridge Dedication in memory of Dennis Burnett, Augusta County’s first Economic Development Director and a huge proponent of LifeCore Drive.

The ribbon cutting and bridge dedication were shining moments for Augusta County as we look forward to future development of this robust life sciences corridor, and we honor those who helped us get where we are today.

??????????The new Rt. 608 bridge has been completed. Here it crosses I-64 at Exit 91 (Expoland, Augusta Health Hospital exit). Traffic has been shifted to the new roadway and construction workers have directed their attention to revamping the old bridge on the right. This is looking north toward Fishersville; Sheetz is to the right (out of photo); McDonald’s is to the left (out of photo).

??????????This is on the bridge as it crosses over I-64. The fence on the left protects pedestrians on the new two-mile walking trail that runs from Expoland to Rt. 250. The Church on the Hill is on the left in the distance.

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??????????This is the north end of the bridge looking over construction along Tinkling Spring Road (Rt. 608) in front of Tinkling Spring Presbyterian Church (on right). On the immediate right is the exit ramp off I-64 West.

??????????The intersection of Rt. 608 (Tinkling Spring Rd), Goose Creek Road, and Lifecore Drive. Turn left toward Augusta Health Hospital (where yellow VW bug is waiting at the light); straight ahead is Fishersville at Rt. 250 and the Augusta County Library; a right turn cuts through past Blue Ridge Church of Christ and on to Rt. 250 at Wayneboro.

??????????Intersection … straight is Rt. 608 North toward Rt. 250; right is Goose Creek; left is Lifecore Drive.

??????????Lifecore Drive with Augusta Health on the right.

??????????The Dennis Burnett bridge over the railroad tracks on Lifecore Drive is named for the late Augusta County economic director. Dennis was in on planning this roadway and the fact he was not there for its dedication last week left a bittersweet feeling.

??????????On Lifecore approaching Rt. 250 in Fishersville.

??????????The wooded landscape will soon be gone and replaced with apartments, businesses, homes, and more as the area around Augusta Health continues to develop as was originally planned over 20 years ago.

??????????The intersection of Lifecore Drive and Rt. 250. Straight ahead through the light is Woodrow Wilson Rehab Center, Shenandoah Valley Governor’s School, and Wilson High, Middle, and Elementary schools. Turn left and you are a few minutes from Staunton. Turn right and you will be headed toward Waynesboro.

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Photos by Lynn R. Mitchell
(unless otherwise noted)

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