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What's News Today: Thursday, September 24

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ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - Big changes to local travel could be in the Roanoke Valley's future. You have a chance to weigh in at a public hearing. City leaders are prioritizing transportation needs as they compete for state and federal money for the next six years.  Changes to Interstate 81 through Salem, Roanoke and Botetourt County is the top priority.

Other possible projects include adding lighting to the interstate, paving the Roanoke River Greenway and new traffic signals along U.S. 220 in front of Lowes in Roanoke. The final applications are due at the end of September. A decision on how funds will be awarded will be made in June. A public hearing will be held during the RVTPO Policy Board Meeting at 1:00 p.m. at the Roanoke Valley-Alleghany Regional Commission office - Top Floor Conference Room (313 Luck Ave., SW, Roanoke, VA 24016).

The city of Martinsville wants your input on the Fayette area to help revitalize it. In 2011 there were surveys and discussions regarding retail, educational and service industry needs in the area.  A meeting today at New College Institute (191 Fayette Street, Martinsville), will ask participants to see what's been done, needs to be done, and other development ideas for the Fayette area.  The meetings will be in a drop-in format at 9A-10:30A; 2P-3:30P, and 5P-6:30P. Ideas in the past was a retail incubator, drug counseling center, community center, community garden/food prep/canning center, vocational education center, and very specific retail, such as a sandwich and coffee shop, day-old bread shop, nail boutique, and repair shops, such as computer, plumbing, shoes, and electrical repair. For more information, please call Susan McCulloch at 276/403-5156 or Wayne D.P. Knox at 276/403-5169.

Four "Artful Bike Racks" have recently been installed in locations around Downtown Lynchburg. It's an area designated as the James River Arts & Cultural District. An installation and ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the project is today at 1:30 p.m. at the 10th Street Entrance to City Hall. The hope is the bike racks will add to the attractiveness of the downtown area and provide functional bicycle parking to serve people living, working and visiting downtown businesses.

Kidz Kraze returns to Lynchburg. Beginning today hundreds of families will drop off more than 50,000 items of children's clothing, toys, furniture, etc. The consignment sale opens Friday for the pre-sale and Saturday it opens to the public. You'll find it in the Fort Hill Shopping Center.

More than 500 Roanoke Valley middle and high school students and adults will be part of the Special Olympics Big Feet Meet at William Fleming High School. They will compete in Track and Field events. William Fleming's student body will be on hand to cheer on the athletes. An 11:00 a.m. ceremony will highlight the Special Olympics athletes as they light the torch and recite the Oath-"Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." They are still asking for volunteers to cheer. Sign up at volunteer2cheer.com