What does Crozet need?

As Crozet moves forward, what do we need? Chinese Food? Coffee Shop? Bakery?

What is our community missing that you would use today, if it were here? Please leave your thoughts in the comments.

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40 Replies to “What does Crozet need?”

  1. A totally redone downtown! I know there’s some sour apples about this, but really, its outdated, unattractive, totally NOT pedestrian or traffic-friendly, and just doesn’t make sense. Unfortunately I don’t think the new sidewalk plan will accomplish much. I think the “Square” could totally be improved, it’d be great to have the lumber property sold to the county!….dreaming….Also, the strip with Subway and Crozet Pizza shoud be demolished and rebuilt about 30 feet back….
    Im sure everyone agrees with me!!

  2. For the most part, I would like the current establishments to have better hours:

    Great Value, how about being opened until 9PM or 10PM every night?

    Hardware stores, how about being opened later than 5PM and opened on Sundays as well?

    I, too, would like a chinese restaurant, as well as a nice bookstore and a clothing store.

  3. I agree a Chinese restaurant would be awesome and have spoken to Faye (owner of Dragon Lady) but was not successful at convincing her to move to Crozet. As for the current stores closing to early, I think that is one of the things that makes Crozet so unique. I’m personally tired of people moving to the area and wanting to change the way life is in Crozet. I know change is inevitable but there are a lot of us out there who loved the small town feel of the “old” Crozet and would like to preserve some of that feeling. Just my personal opinion!

  4. I make it a point of asking management at any Chinese restaurant to consider opening a restaurant in Crozet. There are a few that I think would do much better in Crozet than they appear to be doing in Cville.

    And Mike, I agree with you (with the possible exception of the 30′ setback line).

  5. I would much rather have Thai food than Chinese any day, for Crozet. A good tailor would be nice. A revitalized downtown, though I would be concerned that once Old Trail town center is established, the downtown would die unless it is a pedestrian friendly, somewhat akin to the Cville Downtown Mall, with coffee shops, etc.

  6. I don’t believe the 45 people employed by the lumber yard, nor would the owners think it “great” to have the property purchased by the County, thus taking away their livelihood.

    I don’t believe the merchants in downtown Crozet, frequented by the 45 people employed by the lumber yard, would think it “great” to have the property purchased by the County, thus taking away their clientele.

    The lumber yard has been in Crozet longer than you and I have been here, providing jobs and paying taxes. We should keep it that way.

    The employees and owners of the lumber yard do a lot for the community of Crozet. Which is more than I can say for our County. Totally.

  7. It is sad that a gas station-dairy queen is the most, and maybe only aesthetic element in what we can barely call “downtown” Crozet. The town eyes random (i.e., uncoordinated) and quite run-down, but Crozet is not unique in that respect in a long shot. Even Charlottesville is (still) an eye sore in many areas, no matter its “Little Apple” aspirations. The road under the rail road track is increasingly grid-locked due to the bizarre combination of 4way stop and traffic lights on either side without left turn lanes. As a small village Crozet was undeniably cute, but now in need to accomodate 12,000 inhabitatants it is wholefully inadequate and this “down town” has no way to maintain that role without a total make over (talk about coordinating!). The largest part is now lumber industry, a total non-fit for any down town. Is it possible to relocate that to a peripheral site in a land exchange, still close enough? A revitalized downtonw using that prime space will do much more than compensate for the 45 people who would then be a bit farther away.

    Let us hope that Old Trail fulfills its promise. That way we may be able to enjoy amenities within walking distance (yes, a coffee shop, movie theater should be among them).

  8. I’m trying to figure out why these people moved here in the first place if they’re so dissatisfied with Crozet. Maybe you should be living in Ch’ville or Northern Va. if you demand so much but don’t try to change everything about the Crozet that a lot of us love.

  9. For everyone who’s been in crozet for the past 15 years will all agree that the new traffic and change to crozet hasnt done any good to our community. Everyone saying we need a new grocery store, the lumber company needs to be sold and them putting their 2 sense in about everything in crozet are the ones who are coming here from other places. There the ones bringing the traffic and causing crozet to be over populated and need the new constructions done. Everyone complaining about the older businesses in crozet like the hardware and especially the lumberyard, needs think before they speak and realize how many people in crozet the lumber company employs. and for zack who says the hardware needs to be open later than 5, look at the hrs genious. ITS 6!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. Well Justin is right in a lot of ways. I am one of the new residents to Crozet, but one of the very reasons I moved here after 14 years in Charlottesville was for Crozet’s sense of community and small town feeling. I would not want to see that lost, nor do I want long-time residents to be more resentful than they already are at the newer residents of Crozet transforming the community in not altogether positive ways. Hopefully Albemarle would stick to the Crozet master plan, but we all know that won’t happen. All of Albemarle has succumbed to the will of the developers. Just look at the size of the proposed Harris Teeter. Just what we need, the area’s most overpriced grocery store overwhelming Rte. 250 to satisfy the rich folks.

  11. While I can understand the resentment towards new residents, please remember that at some point in time, YOU too were a new resident that added a car or two to the roads. In addition, if you moved to Crozet 20 years ago (or any time frame for that matter), don’t you think that some of your neighbors who had been living in Crozet for years earlier were resentful that you moved in? I seriously doubt that all of them were jumping for joy. If you want to have an attitude of resentment, that’s your right, but you should also be resentful towards your fellow citizens that decided to sell their land to the developers. If you didn’t try to persuade your fellow citizens to not sell their land, or if you didn’t participate in the public hearings that occurred while the land was in the application process, don’t be too resentful.

    Of course traffic is not good for any town, but I have yet to have a Crozet business owner complain to me that they wished I didn’t live in Crozet. They seem to be happy to take my money, but I could be wrong. I feel everyone’s pain about traffic, construction, etc., but remember that at some point in time, you were the cause of it. I have the same rights to live here as you do, regardless of the length of time you have lived here. Let’s just be respectful and work together.

    Justin, I apologize for being an hour off in regards to the closing time of the hardware store. Whether they agree with my opinions or not, I think readers of this blog understand my point. If you are going to be critical of me for that error, that’s your right, but use a dictionary next time. I think you meant “genius” instead of “genious”.

  12. Wait a second, are we really talking about traffic in Crozet?? There’s really not any – unless you’re talking about being the 4th car waiting at the 4-way stop – and if thats traffic, I’ll take it.
    Also, re: the Harris Teeter – Amen! I really do feel for the Great Value folks, but having an HT in Crozet is something I’m very excited about – its really not a ritzy grocery by any means – what do you want, a food lion??
    Anyway, my 2 cents – I’m sure plenty disagree, and I’m glad this blog is here for us to voice our opinions – but lets keep it civil!

  13. I tend to agree with K.T. I am new to Crozet and I like it the way it is. We moved here to get away from the hordes of yuppies that seem to want to take over nice little towns like Crozet.

    If you want NoVa, please go back.

  14. Interesting comments, and I thought I’d step in for a moment:

    Tom – I understand your sentiment, but Crozet has been a designated growth area for quite some time. We all knew (I’ve only been in Crozet for 5 years) that change was coming.

    John –

    Thank you for the request for civility! Of all the grocery chains in the area, save for Whole Foods, HT is the most expensive of the bunch. It would appear that they are catering to the “new” Crozet.

    Zach –

    As always, thank you for your comments.

    Thank you everybody for the good discussion. Again, this blog was started to provide exactly this forum, so thank you for participating.

  15. I have been a White Hall/Crozet resident for 21 years and live in the middle of downtown Crozet.

    I bought an existing home which has tripled in property assessment value in 12 years (great for me!) and sent my children through the highly desired Crozet Elementary/Henley/Western school system. I have been fortunate to find employment in Crozet throughout the years. I benefited from the true small town atmosphere Crozet had to offer until a few years ago. I never had to worry about schools being overcrowded nor had to be in discussions about redistricting. My children’s school experience was indeed very simple and carefree.

    When new residents refer to us old timers as probably resentful, please don’t include me in that category. Newcomers should be the ones that are resentful that they missed the boat on the small town Crozet. They got here too late. And they paid big bucks for their new nomes that have no character and were built in 3 months full of carpenterial short cuts.

    Farm owners sold their overvalued farms with a heavy heart. They were no longer working farms but they were family owned properties whose taxes became too much to bear. Being offered a few million bucks was probably kind of hard to turn down.

    If you want store hours to be extended to 9 or 10, that’s fine with me. I can’t imagine whatever I wished for at 9:00 PM can’t wait until 7 AM. And I don’t want to garden on Sundays so no need for a hardware store to stay opened on Sundays.. To me gardening is for Saturdays.
    I don’t want to speak for Jean Wagner (that’s the owner of the grocery store that I can’t seem to stop calling the IGA), but if I was in her situation, I wouldn’t lose too much sleep over the Harris Teeter coming to town. The Wagners have also been able to raise their families with the support of the old Crozet residents and retiring may not be an unwelcomed lifestyle.

    A Chinese restaurant would be nice. Ming Dynasty owners told me there is no available or affordable space big enough for a Chinese restaurant . At $1500 a month rent they would have to pay for the square footage required, they just couldn’t imagine selling enough cheap Chinese food to make it worth their while.

    So go ahead and wish for more things, expand roads and build sidewalks, tear down every existing building in the downtown area, and get more trailers for the schools. I’ll use all the new amenities until I move to a new town. But before I move to a new town, I will know exactly its past history, its present status and the projected population growth so I can set my expectations accordingly.

    Welcome to Crozet!

  16. Growth……………to borrow from our pop culture, “It is what it is”.
    I’m a long time resident (over 15 yrs.) and you can either view growth as an inconvenience or an opportunity. Either way, it is inevitable.
    We have not been able to keep what has made Crozet special a secret. We have bragged about its qualities to everyone for a long time. And now its coming back to haunt us.
    I only have one favor to ask of all the yuppies, newbies, and complainers from C’ville and up north who are moving in……please, buy a house in Old Trail so we know where you are at all times.
    Thanks in advance and, “Claudius, we love you”.

  17. Brrr. It’s getting a little cold in here.

    I have lived in Crozet only one year, live in one of the new developments (Parkside), and love it. I love what we have now. I love being able to walk to the pool and to my son’s tee-ball games. I love seeing my neighbors out on the block, gardening, walking dogs, scootering with kids, and talking. I love that the neighborhood all turned out to help us watch the Ohio State game.

    And yet, for us, this is much more “city” than where we were before; we moved from Nellysford (west, rather than north). To have a hardware store, grocery store, hair cut place, pizza place, video store, library, park, pharmacy and multiple restaurants just around the corner is wonderful! It’s pretty idyllic. I feel as if I’ve found the best of both worlds.

    I know my street is slated to become the main street, and I find that pretty exciting and am looking forward to walking to the beautiful new library (if the Master Plan goes through).

    And I know there are many, many people who have lived here longer than I and have attachments to things I might not appreciate or might even take for granted. I appreciate being told about those, and I like learning the history of Crozet from folks willing to share it.

    I’m working for some changes, too, that I think might make this an even better place–such as a recycling center here in Crozet. I am sure someone can find something wrong with that, but I know I just want to make a positive difference.

    I guess I’m a newbie, and I am sure I look like a yuppie to anyone who doesn’t know me, but what I would ask is that we all get to know each other without the labels. I like to make my friends based on who they are, not where they live or for how long they’ve lived there.

    Here is my full name, so that you’ll know me when you meet me. I look forward to it. -Katrien Vance

  18. G –

    thanks for visiting. One thing that I as the editor request is that we refrain from name-calling and keep things civil. Some might call you a newbie. My wife, who is a multi-generational Charlottesville native, calls me a newbie as I have been here for only 20 years.

    Why pick on Old Trail? They are the easy target, but don’t forget the other developments – Grayrock, Grayrock North, Waylands Grant, Bargamin Park, Parkside, Westhall, Cory Farms, Highlands, Church Hill, Western Ridge, Foxchase, etc – they all contribute something to the fabric that is Crozet.

    Sticks and stones, yes, but still, must we stoop to that level?

    Re: “Claudius, we love you,” Claudius Crozet is the namesake for the mess hall at VMI (my alma mater) so I don’t have the same fond memories of the man. 🙂

  19. A Chinese place would be nice.

    When you talk to restauranteurs about coming to Crozet (especially downtown) don’t forget that the new US Joiner building (Crozet Commons next to the Great Value) has at about 40 people who are there every day now. I know a lot of the folks there would gladly go out for lunch every day instead of “packing”… they miss the lunch places back in Waynesboro.

  20. Dear Zach,

    Perhaps your new neighbors would warm to you more quickly if you would drop the condescending tone and snide spelling corrections. Unless, of course, that’s how you want others to treat you. If so, watch out for those dangling modifiers.

    Furthermore, the Crozet business owners who are so “happy” to take your money might change their tune if they heard of your plan to demolish their business sites and relocate them by thirty feet.

  21. Hi,
    My family moved out of Charlottesville to a farm near Crozet 9 years ago. We moved out this way because we could see the way things were changing in the north of Albemarle County, way more traffic, more subdivisions, more shopping centers. I grew up in SC which has been taken over by shopping centers and developments. When one gets run down, the developers move a mile down the road, abandon the first shopping center and build another. There are many abandoned shopping centers around Greenville, SC. It is an ugly, concrete filled, traffic inundated place, that used to be green and lovely until the developers took over. I would hate to see that happen to Crozet. It seems to be already happening in the north of the county.

    I love old Crozet. Yes, it is rundown in some ways, but my kids love watching the train at the old library, I love being able to look for books in the library and still being able to keep an eye on my kids. If the library doesn’t have a book that I want, they will get it for me from another library in the county or in the state. I love that the librarians know my name, and that I know the people in the hardware store, and the pizza and grocery store.

    I really would rather not see the Harris Teeter go in on 250. Our traffic will increase substantially, and where one store goes, others will follow. I make a trip to Charlottesville or Waynesboro once a week for a major shopping trip, what I run out of during the week, I shop for locally.

    I love that I can have chickens, roosters, donkeys, horses and cows and no one complains about the noise, smell, flies, … We live in what is now a rural area. How long that it will remain that way is questionable, but I chose to move here because it was a largely rural area. I think that it is the charm of the area, and keeps it unique. If we add all the things that people want like a movie theatre, Chinese restaurants, more pizza places, more stores, then it will begin to be more like NoVA and less like Crozet. What will make our town unique? We will look like every other place in suburban USA.


  22. So….whats the latest…?

    I moved to Crozet in 1981 when my father worked at the radio stations, WPED 810AM/WCMZ 102.3 ‘The Country Twins’ when they were located at the end of Hilltop, long before ‘Pleasantville’ was built. I went to Henley, graduated from Western in 87′. My brother even went to the original Crozet Elementary and my first job was baggin’ groceries at the Crozet IGA in 1986.

    I left the area in 1993, my parents stayed until my fathers passing in 1997. I still visit Crozet every year as I have fond memories of Crozet, my house on York Drive in Orchard Acres. The appeal being the beautiful countryside and the people including the business’s.

    Change is tough, no doubt. How does one bring it about to not alienate the long-time citizens, but still maintain a positive infrastructure for Crozet to prosper? It seems to be a fine line. I remember the days when the only gossip of ‘new’ development was a ‘Food Lion’ on RT 250. Oh the horror…lol

    The amount of expansion and housing development was practically nil until this decade, so there is definitely two divisions of perception and thought. How much can you change the landscape and yet still retain the feel of old Crozet? The Crozet Shopping Center is unquestionably a dump visually, maybe thats its charm to the longtime locals/shoppers.

    I’ve always considered retiring to Crozet when at that crossroad. For me the question is, what kind of Crozet will it be 20 years from now.

    Curious former local,


  23. Ice cream shop! Right next to Otto’s. I hope one will appear. it kind of cancels out the trips to the gym, but, hey that’s WHY I go to the gym. And barbecue, a la Ashleys on Route 151. I would love a good, local barbecue sandwich. I guess I am hungry right now, but that’s what I’d love to see in Crozet.

  24. Hey, there was a sign at the Crozet Snack shop the other week announcing the coming of “New China”…is it the long-hoped-for Chinese restaurant? Any news?

  25. We most certainly need a Chinese restaurant in Crozet!
    We also need a Fudruckers and Appleby’s restaurants.

    It wouldn’t hurt if we had a GAP, too.

    The other thing I’d like to see is a movie theatre so my kids can go to the movies. Something else that would make Crozet a GREAT place to live would be an Indian restaurants. I love chicken saag!

    If we get these things, Crozet might just be an even better place to live!

    One other thing I’d like to see in Crozet is a J Crew. I love the clothes at J. Crew. And maybe a Target? I know that may be asking a lot, but I think a Target in Crozet would be HEAVEN!

    1. Triple J –

      I guess what we don’t need any more of is sarcasm. Luckily, we have plenty of friendly good humor. I’m excited to get to the new book store and Thai restaurant in the 2 very different parts of Crozet.


  26. More fast food – McDonalds, Burger King, Taco Bell, etc. And another drug store to give the one we have competition.

  27. I know it is likely a dream, than reality, but I would LOVE to have a Ph? or pho is a Vietnamese restaurant. There are none in Charlottesville (there is Thai, but no true Vietnamese. There is nothing like a hot bowl of Ph? on a cold, dreary winter day. It warms the heart and soul! There are so many in the NOVA and Rockville area, and I would love little Crozet to have one as well.

    1. I guess you cannot use special characters – the word is Pho, but it was truncated since I used a special character.

Something to say?