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VTrans Ancient Roads Program

03.26.13

The VTrans Ancient Roads Program was developed after Act 178 went into effect in 2006. The goal of this program is for Vermont towns to identify and map “unidentified corridors”, or ancient roads. Act 178 requires that ancient roads are mapped on the VTrans Town Highway Maps by July 1, 2015. If an ancient road is not on the VTrans maps by that date, ownership of the road will revert back to the adjacent landowners.

Many of these ancient roads are now Town Trails and are likely listed on the VTrans maps as Class 4 roads. However, some of these roads may have been “lost” over the years and are not shown on the maps. In order to locate these ancient roads, a review of the land records, road surveys, deeds, lotting plans and old maps needs to be conducted. Local knowledge can be extremely helpful in this process as well. If the ancient roads can be found in the land records or on old maps, it may be possible for the Town to maintain ownership by requesting VTrans to add them to the Highway Maps. This process can be overwhelming and can require some specialty skills such as deed research, surveying, drafting and GIS.

Dufresne Group’s Manchester Office Manager, Christina Legge, PE, serves the Town of Jamaica as the Chairperson of the Planning Commission. The Jamaica Planning Commission has recently begun the process of identifying and mapping ancient roads. Christina and the other Planning Commission members will be working with Town residents, the Windham Regional Commission and adjacent towns to determine if any ancient roads exist in Jamaica that are not on the VTrans Highway Maps. Christina will help this effort by providing drafting and GIS support and researching existing documentation. Christina is available to answer questions about the Ancient Roads Program and discuss what your Town can do to find ancient roads. She can be contacted in our Manchester office at 802-768-8291 or clegge@dufresnegroup.com.

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