Proposed Amendment to the Newfane Town Plan

The Town of Newfane supports the development of, and intends to apply for, Village Center Designation for the three villages in the Town of Newfane, Newfane Village, Williamsville and South Newfane.

The Village Center (VC) designation is non-regulatory; it is not a zoning overlay, nor is it a historic district. The VC designation process recognizes and encourages local efforts to revitalize Vermont’s traditional village centers. Designated VCs receive priority consideration for state grants and other resources. Commercial property owners in designated VCs are eligible for tax credits to support building improvements (accd.vermont.gov). There is no financial burden on the Town for having designated Village Centers.

Village Center Designation will support, encourage and expand community interaction, enhancing the assets of the three villages of Newfane, such as the Village Green and Union Hall in Newfane Village, Williamsville Hall in Williamsville, and the little schoolhouse in South Newfane.

Village Center Designation will provide the opportunity to improve connectivity and alternative transportation options such as ride sharing, bike paths and traffic calming, thereby improving the quality of life for residents and visitors alike.

Village vitality will be enhanced by being Designated Village Centers. The Village Center program provides opportunities for eligible projects within the designated areas to receive technical assistance and state funding. The program includes a variety of tax credit incentives to help reduce the costs of façade and life-safety/ADA compliance code related improvements, and some data and network installations and related HVAC costs. Eligible projects are given priority consideration for Municipal Planning Grants, grants from the Agency of Transportation, Agency of Natural Resources and the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program.

In applying for Village Center Designation, the Town will:

  1. explain how designation helps implement the relevant goals in this Plan, linking the goals in the Plan to the relevant purposes and benefits of State designation. The application will explain how the designation would further the state’s planning goals listed in24 V.S.A. section 4302.
  2. include the designation boundary on at least one map.

Village Centers offer the benefit of economical uses of public facilities, and services; we can preserve more of our forests and open spaces for future generations; our children have easier access to friends and community life in these small population centers; and, being close to neighbors, citizens are better able to take care of each other.