Wariness of the Crozet Master Plan

A letter from a reader:

Thank you for the continued updates. We bought in December 2013 in (Crozet) and love it. We will be retiring there in the next few years and selling our DC metro home in MD.

We have watched with dismay over the past 40 years as a pastoral gem — Piscataway, MD, est. 1636 — was continually remade in the image of special interest groups, county government, and developers who could not grasp the significance of an area 20 minutes from the Capitol Building in DC that retained so much early local history, buildings, and active farms. There were many meetings, zoning amendments, master plans presented, but ultimately, all was disregarded and developed much like the rest of the area. Very large homes on tiny lots with a high foreclosure rate, inadequate infrastructure, terrible roads, intolerable commutes, and schools that rank among the lowest in MD. However, we have a world class casino 10 minutes away…

The experience has left me very leery of Smart Growth. Or, any promise of master plans that will actually govern the development process and honor the vision that preserves the essence of the area being considered and the will of the people.

I’m not anti growth. I just wonder if we really want the Crozet area to look just like every other developing area. I think it is a very shortsighted view.

    – Chris

Crozet Master Plan Survey Meeting – 23 March 2017

Short story: the Crozet Master Plan update will likely affect Crozet significantly. Be there if you’re interested. (does the Crozet Firehouse have open wifi?)


via email:

The Crozet Master Plan Survey committee meeting
Thursday, March 23, at 7:00 PM
at the Crozet Firehouse

Anyone interested in helping with the Crozet Master Plan survey is invited to attend the next meeting on Thursday, March 23 at 7:00 PM at the CrozetFirehouse (come around the back of the fire station, and enter through the glass doors on the east side).   We will be reviewing the final draft of the new survey based on all the input and feedback received.  The survey‘s goal is to find out what the residents of Crozet and surrounding community think about various topics and concerns related to the Crozet master plan and its implementation.

Background: Over six years ago, the Crozet community conducted a community survey to get input on items of concern and interest to Crozetresidents to inform the revision of the 2010 Crozet Master Plan revision.   This meeting is part  a similar process for the next revision of the Crozet Master Plan.  Said revision is already over a year over-due and not schedule by the County to occur for another year or two.  The Crozet Community Association (CCA) believes that’s too long to wait for revision, given the pace of development in Crozet.

This is a committee of the Crozet Community Association (CCA).   The results from the survey will be made public.  It will be used to inform the process of master plan revision.  It will also help inform what topics the CCA should focus on when it hosts some town hall meetings about Crozet Master Plan (CMP) revision topics.

Additional background:

We did this in 2009, too.

And in 2005, too

And you can listen to Tom Loach from 2007.

Neighborhood Funding Initiative Meeting Recap

How would you spend a couple hundred thousand dollars in Crozet? That was the focus of the meeting on Wednesday night at Crozet Elementary.


Keep in mind that this money is to be split amongst 7 CACs.

Background on the Neighborhood Funding Initiative.



I wasn’t able to make the meeting, but offer big thanks to those who were there who tweeted.

Click through for the tweets; there’s a lot of good information there.

Continue reading “Neighborhood Funding Initiative Meeting Recap”

Crozet Board of Trade Meeting – 20 March 2017

Remember … local politics are where your voice can (hopefully) matter the most. Also, I’d advise walking or riding bicycles …

via email:

Dear Crozet Board of Trade —

The street design of The Square will be our main topic when we meet again next Monday, the 20th, at Crozet Pizza restaurant at 7:30. County facilities director Trevor Henry and transportation engineer Jack Kelsey will present the county’s plans for renovating The Square, which the county discovered that it owns last year. The prospect is a one-way street accessible from Crozet Avenue with angled parking. Come see and let’s give the county some feedback on a project that is critical to downtown.
We also have several new businesses who will be there to introduce themselves and join our company in working to build Crozet’s prosperity.
We’ll meet in the former location of Over the Moon Bookstore, which is now part of Crozet Pizza and offers a quiet room. Food and beer is handy, of course. The meeting will last no more than an hour. Stick around and visit afterward.

Remember, besides the parking space in front or at The Depot, there’s parking behind the Fruit Growers Building, including 16 spaces that were recently paved.
See you there!

Mike Marshall
President, CBT

Temporary Signal at 151/250

via email:

To improve safety, the Virginia Department of Transportation is installing a temporary signal at the intersection of Route 250 (Rockfish Gap Turnpike) and Route 151 (Critzers Shop Road) in Afton, near the Nelson County line.

An advance warning flasher on Route 250 eastbound, which has a steep downgrade, will accompany the signal to alert motorists when the signal ahead is yellow or red.

Beginning this week through late April, motorists should stay alert for intermittent lane closures controlled by flagging.

A more extensive project is in development to convert the intersection to a roundabout. The safety improvement project will address a history of turning-related crashes at the high-volume intersection. Route 250 carries 6,700 vehicles per day and Route 151 carries 10,000 with about seven percent truck traffic daily on both routes. Pending funding approval, preliminary engineering on the project will begin in 2018.

But y’all knew that if you followed RealCrozetVA on Instagram. 🙂



Crozet Trails Add to Crozet’s Connectivity


It’s amazing that you can get from Western Ridge, Cory Farm, Highlands, Westhall … all on paths, on foot or on bicycle, and not in a car.  Thanks to the Crozet Trails Crew.

A few upcoming dates of note



Be Nice to your Neighbors, Please

A friend wrote this at my request after he told me this story. (bolding mine)

I have ridden the roads of Albemarle County on and off for more than 30 years since I was in school here. I have been fortunate enough to ride them again after moving back to the area 2 1/2 years ago. It is clearly one of the most beautiful and enjoyable cycling areas on the east coast and a joy to ride in every day.

So it was last Sunday afternoon despite the ominous weather looming. My family, my wife, my teen age son and I went for a ride hoping to enjoy some of the gravel roads in the White Hall area. Gravel riding has become much more popular in the US in the last 5 years or so and has led to special types of bikes and efforts by cyclists to get off the busy more traveled roads, stay clear of traffic and see areas less traveled enjoying the countryside even more.

It was to my great chagrin then that, after we came off 810 and survived the rolling storm that came through the area as we went up the first hill on Slam Gate, we hit a lot of traffic surprisingly on Slam Gate Road.

Whereas only one vehicle passed us the miles we were on 810, suddenly we had 8 vehicles pass us in the short few miles we were on the gravel section of Slam Gate. But most disarming was the last vehicle.

A (car with distinctive) logo license plates whose owner somehow thought that, despite their distinctive vehicle and plates, they would be anonymous as they incessantly honked their horn from a quarter mile back and continued to honk repeatedly as they passed my wife, my teenager and I all riding in single file, properly spaced out on plenty wide gravel road. Not only was it disappointing to hear the angry honking of the driver but, all the more so to see the shocking anger of their elementary school age child screaming out the front window at these cyclists that somehow were ruining their day by riding on the same road that they were on.

These cyclists pay the same taxes that they do. And yet for some reason, even though the vehicle didn’t have to slow at all, we see all this anger and frustration pouring out of the horn of the vehicle and again out of their younger child.

You are not anonymous when you drive in a vehicle. People can trace license plates. People remember who goes by, who’s polite and especially who’s not. Crozet is still a small enough area that we know vehicles and are all the more shocked and disappointed when we find that they have children that go to our children’s school, that they live close by.

Cyclists need to do what we try to do all the time in Crozet. That is ride single file when a vehicle’s behind, follow traffic laws, wear lights and helmets. Pull off the road if we’re slowing an excessive amount of traffic on a long climb. But people who drive cars also need to remember that people who ride bicycles are their neighbors. Cyclists could be a brother, a sister, a spouse, a son or a daughter, a friend. They are other people in their community trying to enjoy the beauty of Western Albemarle County just like everyone else.




Jim’s note: The vehicle he described had a distinctive license plate that resonated with me. A couple days later when driving my daughter to school, I saw what looked to be the referenced vehicle, we took pictures, sent to my friend, he confirmed, and I figured out who the person is. This isn’t a post to publicly shame someone, but to remind us all that we share the same spaces.

Notably, this person was born in Albemarle –  long enough to know that “sharing the road” isn’t a foreign concept.

We are a small community. We are neighbors, whether that’s next door, next road, or next neighborhood. Many of us shop at the same grocery stores and get coffee at the same places. 

I said last year

“This area’s hard to beat. It’s gorgeous. We stop to take pictures,” said Duncan. “We take time to appreciate where we are. Morning commuters know us because of our headlight power. We stick together as a group. We’re extremely conscientious about safety and sharing the road. We live here and we don’t want to piss off our neighbors.

Also: There is a Close Call Database for cyclists to report dangerous people who drive cars.

Neighborhood Improvement Funding Initiative

Update 9 March 2017:  Please see this Google Form —  Crozet-area Community Neighborhood Project Brainstorm. Sorry for the late notice; this is the first I’ve seen this as I missed the email on 3 March from the County.

via press release:

Crozet’s meetings are:

March 15 & April 19 | 7PM
Crozet Elementary cafeteria

Is there a small-scale improvement, like walking trails or playground equipment, that would benefit your community? Or the need for a planning or design study for a future improvement? The Neighborhood Improvement Funding Initiative is a new, one-time program approved by the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors to drive investment in quality-of-life projects in the County’s development areas.

County residents are invited to participate in a series of community meetings happening in the development areas to identify and then
prioritize projects for your area. Read on to learn more about this initiative.

Development areas are the urbanized portions of the County and include the urban ring around the City of Charlottesville, the 29 North corridor, Pantops, Crozet, and the Village of Rivanna. Each area has a master plan and a Board-appointed Community Advisory Committee to help implement the plan. View a map of the development areas and find the Community Advisory Committee nearest you!

During March and April, the seven Community Advisory Committees will hold community meetings to identify quality-of-life projects (March) and then prioritize them (April). We invite anyone in the community to participate in these meetings in-person (or before the meeting, online).