I ride through Crozet Park all the time and there is a lot happening! So much so that I asked Kim Guenther with the Park to give us an update. She was gracious to quickly email me something and it’s taken me a couple weeks to get around to posting; I’m sorry.
What’s Happening at the Park
If you’ve been by Crozet Park lately, you’ve no doubt noticed the mountains of dirt sitting south of the upper playground. Some have guessed this might be a new BMX dirt bike course or, an obstacle for a Tough Mudder event. Or, just for fun, the Park Board decided to dig up the old pool near the upper playground that was shut down and covered over when the new pool was built in 1996. But no, none of these things are true. Instead, we are redesigning and improving the Park’s parking.
The project kicked off in early July and we’ve pulled together key points into an FAQ. So, if you’re wondering what the heck is going on at your community park, read on…
- Why are we renovating and expanding Park parking?
Surveys of Park users have helped make clear how current parking is not adequate.
Anyone who has been to the Park, especially in the spring and summer, can attest to the many challenges of parking. Park usage continues to increase especially as new amenities – dog park and perimeter trail — are added, resulting in parking that is less than adequate. To put this in context, traffic volume coming into the community-owned 22-acre Crozet Park is second only to the County-owned Darden Towe Park, a 113-acre park in Charlottesville.
- When will this project take place and why do it during the summer?
The project will take approximately 3 months to complete, starting in early July and ending in late September. This timing was chosen to avoid some of the high traffic activities taking place in the Park, namely: Peachtree baseball, July 4th celebration, and the bi-annual Crozet Arts & Crafts Festival in May and again in October. Since the project could not be conducted during the coldest winter months, July through September was selected as the best window for the project, although there is still significant traffic coming into the Park during these months.
- Where should I park while construction is underway?
The Park Board, County and the YMCA will work closely to minimize disruption to Park users by communicating changes as they occur and clearly marking available parking during the project. Each week during the project a new parking map will be issued to show all open and closed lots. The latest parking map can be found at:
- What are the goals for this project?
The parking project has several goals: increase parking spaces with most of the new spaces located in front of the facility, re-pave and line existing parking spaces and improve lighting (using “dark sky compliant” fixtures) and upgrade directional signage.
A key design requirement has been to increase pedestrian safety in front of the facility. The most noticeable change will be to close the current traffic flow between the upper playground and summer swim entrance. This area has long been a safety concern as people enter and exit the pool and playground while cars are coming through this same area. The new traffic pattern will bring cars to the south of the upper playground and then curve around to the back of the facility by the basketball courts. Overflow event parking will continue to take place on the basketball courts and the grassy areas along the main Park exit and around the pond. The area between the playground and summer swim entrance will be changed to pedestrian use only.
- How can I help support this project?
Be patient and travel slowly through the Park. Please pay close attention to the contractor’s orange fencing, pylons and signage. All of these things are in place to keep you safe.
- How can I see updates about progress?
Information regarding parking changes will be distributed via flyers, email, website and social media. Please go to the Piedmont YMCA’s or Crozet Park Facebook pages for updates. Regular updates to the Park’s parking lot map will be posted in the YMCA Fitness Center front lobby/hallway. And, the YMCA front desk staff is able to collect your comments or concerns; they will hand them off to the Park leadership and parking project team.